Code of Ethics

This Code of Ethics articulates a common set of values upon which peace activists, mediators and conflict managers build their professional and scientific work. The Code is intended to provide both the general principles and the rules to cover professional situations encountered by mediators. It has as its primary goal the welfare and protection of the individuals and groups with whom mediators work. It is the individual responsibility of each mediator to aspire to the highest possible standards of conduct in research, teaching, practice, and service.

The development of a dynamic set of ethical standards for a mediator’s work-related conduct requires a personal commitment to a lifelong effort to act ethically; to encourage ethical behavior by students, supervisors, employers, and colleagues; and to consult with others as needed concerning ethical problems. Each mediator supplements, but does not violate, the values and rules specified in the Code of Ethics based on guidance drawn from personal values, culture, and experience.The following General Principles are aspirational and serve as a guide for mediators in determining ethical courses of action in various contexts. They exemplify the highest ideals of professional conduct.

A: Professional Competence: Mediators strive to maintain the highest levels of competence in their work; they recognize the limitations of their expertise; and they undertake only those tasks for which they are qualified by education, training, or experience. They recognize the need for ongoing education in order to remain professionally competent; and they utilize the appropriate scientific, professional, technical, and administrative resources needed to ensure competence in their professional activities. They consult with other professionals when necessary for the benefit of their students, research participants, and clients.

B: Integrity: Mediators are honest, fair, and respectful of others in their professional activities in research, teaching, practice, and service. Mediators do not knowingly act in ways that jeopardize either their own or others‘ professional welfare. Sociologists conduct their affairs in ways that inspire trust and confidence; they do not knowingly make statements that are false, misleading, or deceptive.

C: Professional and Scientific Responsibility: Mediators adhere to the highest scientific and professional standards and accept responsibility for their work. Mediators understand that they form a community and show respect for other mediators even when they disagree on theoretical, methodological, or personal approaches to professional activities. Mediators value the public trust in sociology and are concerned about their ethical behavior and that of other mediators that might compromise that trust. While endeavoring always to be collegial, mediators must never let the desire to be collegial outweigh their shared responsibility for ethical behavior. When appropriate, they consult with colleagues in order to prevent or avoid unethical conduct.

D: Respect for People’s Rights, Dignity, and Diversity: Mediators respect the rights, dignity, and worth of all people. They strive to eliminate bias in their professional activities, and they do not tolerate any forms of discrimination based on age; gender; race; ethnicity; national origin; religion; sexual orientation; disability; health conditions; or marital, domestic, or parental status. They are sensitive to cultural, individual, and role differences in serving, teaching, and studying groups of people with distinctive characteristics. In all of their work-related activities, mediators acknowledge the rights of others to hold values, attitudes, and opinions that differ from their own.

E: Social Responsibility: Mediators are aware of their professional and scientific responsibility to the communities and societies in which they live and work. They apply and make public their knowledge in order to contribute to the public good. When undertaking research, they strive to advance the science of mediation and to serve the public good.

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