Ethical Behaviour and Morality


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Explains the meaning of two interrelated but distinct concepts of ethics and morality,states its need for public servants and the ways a public servant should pursue his career by following ethical principles of behaviour

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  • A vegetarian posted in a livestock department or a pacifist judge posted in a country where death penalty is permitted
  • Ethical Behaviour and Morality

    1. 1. Shahid Hussain RajaIndependent Consultant-Public
    2. 2.  Introduction What is morality What are ethics Why need them What they entail Conclusion
    3. 3.  Ethics and morality are two interdependent but distinctconcepts at conceptual as well as at practical levels They are the basic foundations of any individual, anorganization or a civilization for survival and growth. Greek –character is destiny aptly describes thisfundamental truth If you cannot stand for something, you will fall for anything
    4. 4.  Personal norms and values about good and bad, yourbeliefs about fundamentals Your own behaviour and the one you expect fromothers Product of your life experience, knowledge andtraining Can differ from person to person even in one socialsetup However there are certain moral values which areuniversal
    5. 5.  Norms and values of an organization, normallyformalised in the shape of codes Expected conduct and behaviour of the membersof that group Can differ from personal moral values but notsubstantially from universal morality in case ofethical organizations Up to a certain level, ethics and morality are thesame-honesty, integrity, transparency, fair playare the universal norms
    6. 6.  It is the highest value which distinguishes humansfrom animals, a basic denominator not the highestpedestal. It is also a legal requirement -you signed an affidavitto remain honest throughout your career. It is also a social obligation-society expects highestmoral standards from its paid servants. It is constitutional duty- you took an oath under aconstitution and all the service framework is basedon constitutional provisions, underpinning ethicalbehaviour
    7. 7.  1.Ethical standards for public service should be clear 2.Ethical standards should be reflected in the legalframework 3.Ethical guidance should be available to public servants 4.Public servants should know their rights andobligations when exposing wrongdoing 5.Political commitment to ethics should reinforce theethical conduct of public servants 6.Decision making process should be transparent andopen to scrutiny
    8. 8.  7.There should be clear guidelines for interaction between the publicand private sectors 8.Managers should demonstrate and promote ethical conduct 9.managemen policies,procedures and practices should promoteethical conduct 10.public service conditions and management of human resourcesshould promote ethical conduct 11.adequate accountability mechanisms should be in place within thepublic service 12.approprite procedures and sanctions should exist to deal withmisconduct(OECD Guidelines for Public Service )
    9. 9.  Giving best of you Ends do not justify means Conflict of Interest and roles Confidentiality of state secrets Application of merit principle Transparent public dealing Personal morality vs. organizational ethics Financial prudence and integrity
    10. 10.  Public service is a trust; not putting in your bestefforts is a breach of trust Working according to job description is yourduty, working beyond is ethics Work is honour; salary is not its compensation Life long learning is must to improve yourcompetency and giving best of you
    11. 11.  Yes, they don’t ! Never fall prey to shortcuts Only self-alienated person mixes the both Do not rationalise your procedural lapses bysuccessful execution of a plan Do go for positive interpretation of rulesprovided the spirit of the legislation is intact
    12. 12.  Do not deal with any case where your own, oryour friends or family’s interest are involved. Do not accept any assignment which conflictswith your job description If you want to do business/consultancy, seekpermission and take leave
    13. 13.  There may be certain moral values which you preferbut if they are in conflict with the organization, thenyou have to follow these. It is ethical behaviour You are bound by the rules of the game not by yourown moral values how high they may be In case of conflict between your personal moralityand organizational ethics, the latter will be yourguiding principles not your own set of values
    14. 14.  You are bound by the law to keep state secrets toyourself Access to Information Act is applicable to non-classified information only Loose talk about cases you deal is unethical Giving off-the-record information to press isalso unethical and immoral Settle your score by writing dissenting notes onfiles ,not through press leakage
    15. 15.  Always apply the merit principle-whetherrecruiting, posting or appointing a person Or making any decision about a career,contract or award without any fear or favour Non-discrimination-on the basis ofgender, religion, caste, except where bound bylaw Besides being right in itself, in these days ofjudicial activism, media exposure and civilsociety intrusion, your career and reputationdepends on your being ethical
    16. 16.  Transparency in public dealing is the essenceof ethical behaviour Withholding information with mala fideintentions is as criminal as taking bribe There is a thick red line between transparencyand confidentiality-the intention
    17. 17.  Acceptance of gifts by public for any reasonis totally forbidden Deposit them with the concerned ministry incase given by the foreigners Elaborate rules exit for purchasing these giftsif you feel a fancy for any gift Misusing public funds for personal gain oruse-avoid it
    18. 18.  Ethical behaviour is contagious Your example will be quoted and followed Leave better examples to be followed