Information Brief on International Risk Management Standards

Described in the Risk Management Reports newsletter as “an intelligent and discerning analysis of today’s risk management”, this brief presents some of the most interesting aspects of key international standards – aspects that are of interest to Canada because they are novel, or represent particularly well-developed international approaches to risk management systems. The paper was commissioned by the Privy Council Office to support discussion on risk management within the current development of a Government Directive on Regulating.

IOG Policy Brief No. 23: Public Service Ethics in the New Millennium: The Evolving Canadian System

This paper provides an introduction to the new and diverse system of public service codes in Canada, and derives six underlying principles from the system. The principles are universal and could be applied to entire ethics programs both in Canada and abroad. The brief also explores the emerging challenge of maintaining coherence in the system overall, and poses timely questions regarding the future development of the Canadian ethics code system.

IOG Policy Brief No. 24: Workplace and Policy Ethics: A Call to End the Solitudes

This brief explores the depth of divergence that exists between workplace ethics and policy ethics. It discusses the benefits of greater integration and puts forth ideas for the implementation of a more integrated system. The key benefit of a balanced system is that it is better able to deliver services to Canadians than a system in which “ethics” is confined to workplace issues.

A Harm-Based Classification of PREPs

This report analyzes Potential Reduced-Exposure Products (PREPs), focusing on a product’s associated harms and benefits rather than its physical and chemical features. The paper includes (a) the definition of “PREPs” and the concept of harm-profiles, (b) a basic classification of PREPs and related products, (c) harm profiles for these product classes, (d) a harm-based classification of PREPs and (e) annotated literature and internet resources.

Report on the Multi-Stakeholder Workshop on Food Irradiation

This report summarizes a workshop on food irradiation, which IOG designed and facilitated at the request of the Health Products and Food Branch of Health Canada in early 2005. Food irradiation is a process that involves using radiation treatment to improve food safety through the elimination of food-borne bacteria, and is currently used in the production of potatoes, onions and flour. In 2002, the federal government proposed amending regulations governing the use of food irradiation in Canada to extend the… Read more

On the Public Controversy Over the Regulation of Risk: Towards A Professional Ethics For Risk Evaluators

Published in Professional Ethics Journal (11:4, pp. 79-85), this paper addresses the interaction between risk assessors and risk managers at the science-policy interface. Organizations are inclined to segregate risk assessors and risk managers to protect the former from political biases and to achieve the ideal of sound science supporting decision-making. This study offers an analysis and alternate management approach, arguing that a dialogue between risk assessors and risk managers over values is not only an essential component of a defensible… Read more

IOG Policy Brief No. 20: Ethics Codes Revisited: A New Focus on Outcomes

There are two very different types of ethics codes: compliance codes and values-based codes, and managers of organizations who want to implement a written ethics code must choose between them. The choice is important, not only because it determines the enforceability of the code and how adaptable it will be in unforeseen situations, but also because it is an indicator for the style of management. This policy brief provides a short evaluation of these considerations and proposes a third option: outcome-oriented… Read more

Lessons from the CropLife Canada Plant Biotechnology Code of Practice and a Comparison to Alternatives

This paper offers a short comparison of the CropLife Plant Biotechnology Code of Practice to the Queensland model and to the BIOTECanada Statement of Ethical Principles. It examines comparative strengths and weaknesses of the CropLife Code, and gives special consideration to CropLife Code’s compliance policy. Investigating this aspect of CropLife’s code facilitates a clearer understanding of the pros and cons of the approaches taken to develop and implement this code of practice and helps to identify implications for a proposed… Read more

Development and Effectiveness of the Queensland Model

There has been considerable interest in the Queensland Code for Biotechnology since its implementation in June 2001. In Canada, the Queensland Code has been considered a possible model for a Canadian Code for Biotechnology. To examine the development and effectiveness of this model, interviews were conducted with a number of stakeholders in Queensland, including representatives of industry, government and academic research. This report presents the results of these interviews and reports on the impact of the Code on biotechnology in… Read more

The Queensland Model from an NGO Perspective

This IOG report expands on a preference analysis conducted in an earlier paper, Is the Queensland Code For Biotechnology a Good Model for Canada? A Preliminary Analysis. Drawing on additional interviews with representatives of NGOs and public interest groups regarding a possible code for biotechnology, it concludes that support for a possible code among this group is, for the most part, conditional and may require a code with a different scope.

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