IEPSL Code of Ethics

Institute of Environmental Professionals, Sri Lanka

  1. Professional Certification

1.1 What is Professional Ethics?

The standards by reference to which preferable conduct relating to a certain area of human activity may be determined.

‘Professional ethics’ is the group of standards relating to the activities of professionals.

1.2 What is a Profession?

Article 14 (1) (g) of the Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, makes it a fundamental right for every citizen to have the freedom to engage by himself/herself or in association with others in any lawful ‘occupation, profession, trade, business or enterprise.’ There are people who on the one hand engage themselves in occupations, trades, businesses and enterprises, and on the other there are those who engage themselves in the practice of professions.

1.3 Professionals Vs Non-professionals

Non-professionals too may belong to work-related organizations such as trade unions. However, there is a difference.  It is this: in the case of a trade union or similar body, the primary or exclusive purpose is to promote the economic interests of its members; whereas in the case of a professional organization, the primary purpose is to advance the goals of the profession, and not personal benefit.

1.4 The Case for Professional Certification for Environmentalists

  • Professional certification means that environmental professionals have demonstrated an appropriate level of education and experience in applying environmental principles and practices in their professional careers. There is an increasing nation-wide demand for certification credentials in the environmental arena.
  • This expertise is provided by environmentalists in academia, government, non-governmental organizations and the private sector.
  • Recognizing this new direction for professional environmentalists, the IEP (SL) provides a certification program for its members.
  • Each certified member also acknowledges adherence to the Code of Ethics of the profession.
  1. Code of Ethics

2.1 Introduction

  • This Code of Ethics is intended to provide guidelines for members of the Institute of Environmental Professionals, Sri Lanka (IEP-SL). It provides a basis for evaluating their professional conduct and work from an ethical point of view.  By heeding this code, members of IEP-SL will help to preserve and enhance public trust in the discipline.
  • It emphasizes the obligations of members to society and to the profession. These obligations provide the organizational structure to these guidelines.
2.2 Goal

To maintain high standards of professionalism by the members of IEPSL, in order to enhance and improve  environmental protection, conservation and management capacity and practices in Sri Lanka.

2.3 Objectives

Environmental professionals are expected:

  • to conduct their professional lives and activities in an ethical manner.
  • to exhibit the highest standards of honesty and integrity.
  • to be dedicated to the protection, conservation and sound management of natural  resources
  • to perform under a standard of professional behavior that conforms to the highest principles of ethical conduct.

2.4 Principles

A commitment to ethical professional conduct is expected of every member of the IEP-SL. Each member shall;

  • Recognize and attempt to reconcile societal and individual needs for natural and cultural resources with responsibility.
  • Ensure that the uses of natural resources are fair, equitable and sustainable and takes into account, the needs of a diverse stakeholder group.
  • Promote and develop policies, strategies, plans, activities and projects that achieve complementarity and mutual support between natural and man-made, and present and future components of the environment.
  • advance the science and practice of environmental protection, conservation and management for the benefit of society
  • Establish and maintain for public benefit, appropriate standards of competence and conduct.
  • Comply with environmental legislative enactments, regulations and standards;
  • Undertake and accept responsibility for professional assignments only when adequately qualified and experienced enough to do so;
  • Provide professional opinions based on adequate knowledge derived from good science, thoughtful deliberations and honest conviction;
  • Maintain competence through continuing professional development;
  • Act with fairness, courtesy and good faith; give credit where due; and accept/give constructive, honest, and fair professional comments and opinions;
  • Conduct oneself honorably, responsibly, ethically, and lawfully, with objectivity and integrity, so as to enhance the honor and reputation of the profession.
  • Avoid conflicts of interest and situations that may imply a conflict of interest.
  • Give credit for intellectual property and honor property rights.
  • Abstain from deceptive acts such as fabricating, falsifying, suppressing, or deliberately misrepresenting research findings, or otherwise committing scientific fraud.
  • Maintain a high standard of professional behavior which will serve as an example to others.
  • Never engage in corrupt practices.
  • Strive to accurately communicate scientific understanding and knowledge, and avoid and discourage dissemination of erroneous, biased, or exaggerated statements.