First published in 1999. This book will help professions and professionals to identify their contribution to society and to understand the argument in which they must engage if they are to justify their conduct. Because of their specialized expertise and power, the task is both difficult and pressing. The work is divided into two parts. Part 1 discusses the concepts ‘ethics’ and ‘professional conduct’, indicating their dimensions and contested nature. In each case, following examination and analysis of relevant literature, a conceptual framework or model is proposed for locating instances of, in turn, ethics and professional conduct. In part 2, the model of ethical choice is used to discuss the ethical justification of professional conduct in the various forms, locations, and stages provided by its social setting. In this way, it provides grounding arguments for relevant action by professionals and others dealing with professionals. The book concludes with a proposal for a national standing commission on the professions.
Part 1: The Basic Concepts 1. What is Ethics? 2. Dimensions of Ethical Conduct 3. What is Professional Conduct 4. Dimensions of Individual and Collective Professional Conduct Part 2: The Ethical Justification of Professional Conduct 5. Individual Ethical Agendas and Professionals 6. An Ethical Agenda for Government: The Role of Professionals 7. Collective Non-Government Ethical Agendas and Professionals 8. When are Professionals the Relevant Moral Agents? 9. Criteria for Justifiable Policy Decisions by Professionals 10. Professionals in Justifiable Policy Implementation 11. Professionals Assessing Ethical Results and Their Attainment 12. Concluding Comments and a Proposal
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