How to Implement Engineering Ethics into Everything you Do

The field of engineering is constantly evolving to meet the demands of a changing society. This means that the old ethical rules may need to develop with the times. Staying up to date with engineering ethics is an essential part of furthering your career in this field.

What is Engineering Ethics?

Many fields have a set of ethical guidelines, and engineering is no exception. These guidelines give advice on how a professional should conduct themselves. Engineering ethics create a framework for decision-making and dealing with potential conflicts. If you’d like to refresh your knowledge, please view our code of ethics here.

What Are the Principles of Engineering Ethics?

The most fundamental principle is to prioritize the safety and wellbeing of the public. As professional engineers, it is our job to protect the public by only approving engineering documents that utilize the safest and most ethical practices available. Other important principles include:

  • only acting in areas where you are competent
  • remaining objective and truthful and avoiding deception
  • conducting yourself in a way that will shine the best light on the engineering profession

What if You Face an Ethical Dilemma?

It’s important to have a measured response when facing a difficult situation like this. According to the National Society of Professional Engineer’s ethics study guide, there are nine steps to ethical engineering decisions. You can read about them in detail here, but the overall principles are to:

  • have a clear goal
  • remain objective
  • understand the facts of the situation including legal concerns
  • consider a variety of options
  • seek trusted outside perspectives
  • decide on a clear course of action

Another important aspect of engineering ethics is how to handle an ethical dilemma with your employer. This can be a difficult balancing act, and your options are listed here.

Would You Like To Learn More?

The New Jersey Society of Professional Engineers (NJSPE) is one of the leading experts in this area. If you’d like to advance the discourse on how ethics can be applied to the field of engineering, consider attending our upcoming continuing education course on April 29. We will be offering ethics credits.

We welcome people of all backgrounds and stages of their career. Your unique perspective can help us further the field of engineering ethics. If you also become a member, you’ll have access to a wide range of benefits, from updates on the law to online seminars. Come by our website to learn more.


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