Ethics Articles

Deepen your knowledge of myriad topics on ethics and the practice of project management including personal decision-making and responsibility, leadership, organizational behavior, trust and more.

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    Individual Decision-Making

    • Bullying at Work: An Ethical and Leadership Dilemma for all Project Managers

      By Paul Pelletier, LL.B., PMP Bullying can be as harmful in the workplace as it is in schools and other areas of society, causing emotional impacts, plus a long list of challenges for project managers and the organizations where…

    • Project Bullies: Are You a Victim?

      By Paul Pelletier, LL.B., PMP Bullying is a tactic used by the perpetrator to get ahead in the workplace. The bullies are often highly skilled workers who are socially manipulative, targeting those who threaten their career path…

    • Not Every Unpleasant Project Conflict Involves Bullying or Disrespect

      By Paul Pelletier, LL.B., PMP Not every unpleasant or challenging conflict with people at work or in a project is disrespectful or bullying – on the contrary. Conflict is a normal part of life and, as you know too well, conflict…

    • Ethical (and Sustainable) Decision-Making

      By Rich Maltzman, Dave Shirley PMI’s Ethical Decision-Making Framework implicitly supports sustainability in project management and is a “green lens” that aids your own decision-making.

    • A Matter of Choice

      By David Schmaltz Should experienced project managers put up with irrational orders even if the objectives can’t be delivered? What constitutes the ethical responsibilities of project work?

    • Acknowledging Blindness

      By David Schmaltz Like Socrates, “know that you don’t know.” For every assignment, seek a way to pursue it with “personal purpose.” And always “extend trust” but count the cards.

    • Project Ethics Part III

      By David Schmaltz “Interpret generously” to simplify controversy. “Work the system to make it work” instead of compliantly complaining. “Sit comfortably with the mess” for a while in order to understand its true…

    • Informed Choice

      By David Schmaltz The series concludes with a plea for “maintaining mindfulness,” especially when it seems you don’t have a choice. Bad things happen — in life and on projects — when we go on autopilot.

    • You are "it" placeholder image

      how global are your ethics?

      By Wong, Barbara J. Until recently ethics was viewed as one of those intangible virtues that was expected to exist in organizations with little conscious effort on the part of its leadership. The recent scandals…

    • Ethics considerations for the project manager in professional services placeholder image

      By Schweriner, Jeffrey H. To effectively manage projects, particularly those projects involving specialized professional services, project managers must often coordinate their efforts with those carried out by their…

    • Utilizing the ethics of project management in the healthcare field placeholder image

      By Gray, Emily Ethical codes are a hallmark of mature professions and organizations. This article compares PMI?s ethical code to the organizational ethical code used at Children?s Hospitals and Clinics of…

    • Really--are you a "professional" project manager? Workshop placeholder image

      By Kindermans, Chris F Professional behaviour or "professional conduct" is a mandatory component to any profession: The credibility and reputation of any profession are indeed shaped by the collective conduct of…

    • The Ethics of the PMO

      By Mark Mullaly, PhD, PMP PMOs in many companies can reflect the worst of matrix organizations: responsibility without accountability, while having at least two masters to serve — project managers and senior management. To…

    • How Not to Leak Company Secrets

      By Elizabeth Harrin Practical tips to avoid releasing the confidential and proprietary information that is often hidden and/or embedded in your organization’s documents.

    • Challenges presented by the RFP layout and content

      By Craig Curran-Morton, PMP Project managers are often required to write and release Request for Proposal (RFP) documents to acquire products or services from outside vendors. Both the writer and the receiver of the RFP face a…

    • Vendors challenges with RFPs from point of awareness through bid submission

      By Craig Curran-Morton PMP Requests for Proposals (RFPs) can help vendors to gain business, but they can also be a challenge to understand and respond to. In this article, the author examines the process from receipt of the…

    • Comprehension placeholder image

      how to build an ethical project framework

      By Setti, Stefano From their investigations on the ethics in projects (a neologism--"ProgEtica/ProjEthics"--has been suggested in order to describe this type of research in one word), the authors have explored the…

    • Project Management Central

      By Discussion thread initiated by Vaslij Petrovic An SME sends an email to a project manager criticizing his work. The SME blind-copies the email to their supervising manager — is that action ethical?


    • Great project leadership placeholder image

      five essentials how leadership and ethics sank along with the Titanic

      Using the sinking of the Titanic as an example and contrasting it with the story of the Shackleton expedition to Antarctica, this paper describes how project managers can take specific leadership…

    • Follow the Leader?

      By By John Ikeda If you’re a project leader, you must teach team member what is important to the project and to you. Taking that step will increase your ability to trust team member decisions and reduce the need for…

    • De la teoría a la práctica: ética, cultura, negocios internacionales y liderazgo placeholder image

      From theory to practice: ethics, culture, international businesses and leadership

      By Buchtik, Liliana Most project managers working at globally competitive organizations know that they must possess the skills and knowledge to work with individuals from an array of cultures. What many may not know is…


    • A Question of Credibility

      By Steven Starke Data suggests that product development teams may too often be working on priorities that are not strongly aligned with organizational strategy, and leading to individualist behavior. Project…

    • Project Management Central: International Project Management

      By Discussion thread initiated by Paulette Brown When undertaking projects in a developing country with lower quality and safety standards, should you adhere to your own country's standards or apply the local standards? Is this an ethical issue?

    • How Do You Look Yourself in the Mirror, Hypothetically Speaking?

      By Miriam Ziemelis What do you do when you are torn between business ethics and moral ethics, and should there be a difference? What if you were privy to advance knowledge that your company would be closing? How would…

    • Ethical issues in project management placeholder image

      a case study of a novice project manager

      By Lindsey, Patricia E This paper involves ethical issues, which can be found in the project management work environment. A short overview of ethics will be covered along with a group participation exercise to develop a…

    Organizational Ethics

    • The interrelationship of governance, trust, and ethics in temporary organizations placeholder image

      By Müller, Ralf This paper addresses the variety of ethical decisions that managers in temporary organizations must make. The study investigates how these decisions are influenced by the governance structures of…

    • Degrees of trust placeholder image

      By Logue, Ann C. Organizations thrive or die as a result of the decisions devised by its employees. Such decisions also provide a snapshot for understanding the ethical behavior endorsed by an organization's culture…


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