GENN001 FALL2013 Session #7 the engineer as a professional
HumanitiesLecture (7) The Engineer as a Professional
Definition of Engineering “It the profession in which knowledge ofmath. and natural sciences gained by study,experience and practice is applied withjudgment to economically utilize thematerials and forces of nature for the benefitof mankind”
Characteristics and Responsibilities ofProfessional Engineers 1- The engineer’s primary responsibility is to place safety of the public above all else. 2- Professional engineers possess education, knowledge, and skills that exceed those of the general public. 3- They must be abreast of discovers and technological changes by participation in professional meetings and continuing education. 4- They must be willing to advance professional knowledge, ideals and practice.
5- They have to share their knowledge with their peers. 6- They must have a sense of responsibility and service to society and to their employers and clients. 7- They must act honorably in their dealings with others. 8- They must be willing to follow established codes of ethics for their profession. And to guard their professional integrity and ideals.
National Society of Professional Engineers subscribe to this creed: I pledge …- To give the utmost of performance- To participate in none but honest enterprise- To live and work with highest standards of professional conduct- To place service before profit- To place honor of the profession before personal advantage- To place public welfare above all other considerations In humility and with need for Divine Guidance, I make this pledge
Egyptian Engineering SyndicateEgyptian Society of EngineersEgyptian Engineering Authority
Professional Registration Registration Requirements : In Egypt: Only B.Sc. is required. Some states in USA require: - B.Sc. - Not less than four years of appropriate experience in engineering work. - Pass two 8-hour written exams.
In case a registrant violates the rules of professional conduct, one of the following actions may be taken against him: 1- He may be reprimanded. 2- His license may be suspended for a specified time. 3- His license may be permanently revoked.
Engineering Ethics Engineering ethics represent the attempts of professional engineers to define proper conduct in their dealings with each other, with their clients, their employees, and with the general public. Engineering ethics involves the study of moral issues and decisions.
What makes certain actions morally rightand others morally wrong?There are four types of moral theories: 1- Utilitarianism: The action is right if it is for the benefit of a majority. 2- Duty ethics: It maintains that there are duties to performed ( to be fair, to be honest, …) even though they may not produce the most good.
3- Rights ethics: An action is morally right if it doesnot violate the rights of other people.4- Virtue ethics: An action is right if it supports goodcharacter traits (virtues) and wrong if it manifests badcharacter traits (vices).
Illustrative case A county executive had the authority to awardcontracts for public works projects to engineeringfirms. Two consulting engineers made secret payments(5% of their fees as kickback or bribe) to the countyexecutive to receive contracts for public-works projects.Why this is wrong?
- Other firms were harmed by not having the chanceto obtain the contracts. The system removed thebenefits of the healthy competition (lower costs, betterproducts ) for the public. Discovery of this kickbackled to a loss of trust in public officials.- The action violated at least two basic principles ofduty : “Avoid deceiving others” and “Be fair”.
- People of other firms acquire a right to unbiasedconsideration of their contract proposals. Thekickback violated this right. Also public’s rights to thebenefits of fair competition were violated- The county executive displayed unfairness,dishonesty and greed. The engineers displayed moralweakness, dishonesty and deceptiveness. Both thecounty executive and the engineers committed vices.
Codes of Engineering EthicsThe National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) code of ethics :Fundamental CanonsEngineers shall;1- Hold paramount the safety, health and welfare of the public.2- Perform services only in areas of their competence.
3- Issue public statements only in an objective and truthful manner.4- Act for each employer or client as faithfully.5- Avoid deceptive acts.6- Conduct themselves honorably, responsibly, ethically, and lawfully so as to enhance the honor, reputation, and usefulness of the profession.
Examples of unethical behavior Bribes to get business Not giving credit to others Implying that others do not provide proper service Covering or not admitting a significant mistake Changing commitments to employers or clients Disclose information concerning clients or employers Attempting to deceive others
Case Study 1 At the urging of the Mayor, the City Council approved to build another runway at the city Airport. A local engineering firm submitted to the Mayor a letter of interest in furnishing the engineering services. The following week, a meeting held at the City Hall. It was attended by the President of the firm, the Airport Engineer and the Mayor’s Executive Assistant. The Assistant informed the engineers that in order to obtain the work a specified contribution would be required. The engineers thanked the assistant and left. After consulting with partners, the President of the firm withdrew from the project.
Comment If the engineer accepted to pay the contribution to get the work, this action would clearly be unethical and illegal.
Case Study 2 Jack, a professional structural eng.. Was asked to investigate an existing structure supporting two condensers, to study the possibility of adding a third condenser to the structure. The structure had been designed two years earlier by a group of engineers under Jack’s supervision. Jack didn’t review the original design. In checking the design, he discovered that the reinforcing steel is not adequate for earthquake loading!!
Jack has three options to choose from:1- Should he say nothing about old error and report that the structure is not capable of carrying the new load?2- Should he work out a system of reinforcement that both rectify the old error and provide a support for the additional new load?3- should he admit the original error and suggest to the owner that repair be done so that the structure would be safe if an earthquake occur?