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

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Author: Marc Saner

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 codes, which allow for the combination of the best elements of the compliance and values-based approaches.

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Institute on Governance

Institute on Governance

Founded in 1990, the Institute on Governance (IOG) is an independent, Canada-based, not-for-profit public interest institution with its head office in Ottawa and an office in Toronto. Our mission is ‘advancing better governance in the public interest,’ which we accomplish by exploring, developing and promoting the principles, standards and practices which underlie good governance in the public sphere, both in Canada and abroad.

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