Code of conduct

A Code of Conduct appropriate to all members practising across the breadth of the Institute's range of interests has been approved by the IOM3 Council. This Code also meets the requirements of the Institute's Royal Charter, and of the bodies with which the Institute registers its members.

The Code of Conduct and respective Disciplinary and Appeals Procedure are detailed in the attachments at the bottom of the page.


The duty upon members of the Institute to behave ethically is, in effect, the duty to behave honourably; in other words, ‘to do the right thing’. At its most basic, it means that a member should be truthful and honest in dealings with clients, colleagues, other professionals and anyone else the member comes into contact with in the course of their duties. Being a professional and a member of a professional body, such as the Institute, is a badge of probity and good faith, and members should do nothing that in any way could diminish the high standing of the profession. This includes any aspect of a member’s personal conduct which could give a negative impact upon the profession.

Members should always be aware of the overriding responsibility to the public good. A member’s obligations to the client and other stakeholders can never override this, and members should not enter undertakings which compromise this responsibility. The ‘public good’ encompasses care and respect for the environment, and for humanity’s cultural, historical and archaeological heritage, as well as the primary responsibility members have to protect the health and wellbeing of present and future generations.


To enable members to conduct themselves properly in the performance of their professional duties, the Institute is obliged to provide a Code of Professional Conduct to lay down, both for its members and for the general public, the ethical standards by which its members should abide. The Code will apply to all its members, irrespective of their grade, the professional role they fulfil or the country in which they practise. The Code contains, first of all, the specific rules of conduct to which members must adhere. The rules cover, in plain language, those basic things that members must do. Where appropriate, there are Guidance Notes to help members interpret and apply the rules. The Guidance Notes do cover the main areas of professional activity in which members are likely to be involved. An act which seriously breaches one of the Guidance Notes will probably breach the Rule for Professional Conduct to which the Guidance Note applies.

Further, more general guidance can be sought from the ‘Good Practice Advice’. This is given in a series of guides published by the Engineering Council to support professional engineers and technicians in meeting their professional obligations; the Institute endorses this as being applicable to all practitioners within its membership regardless of whether they are engineers or not. This includes a Guide on Whistleblowing, which should be read alongside the Code of Conduct. The latest versions of these guides can be downloaded at the bottom of the page. A member will not be considered to have breached the Rules for Professional Conduct solely because they have not followed the ‘Good Practice Advice’.

Many, perhaps most members will pass through their professional lives without ever having to consider whether their actions are in accordance with the Code of Professional Conduct. However the Institute is anxious that any member, who is troubled by an ethical problem, particularly if they are worried about breaching the Rules for Professional Conduct, should be able to discuss their concerns with one or more of the senior members of the Institute.

Anyone seeking further information should contact Ian Bowbrick, Director, Professional Development & Membership on or tel +44 (0)1476 513893 or through our online enquiry form.

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