By Dr Paul Vorster
This year the AEPF is implementing their first Ethical Practices Survey which aims to measure the perceptions of professionals regarding the ‘state-of-ethics’ in society, organisations and professional institutions in South Africa. Since the AEPF’s inception in 2014, it has endeavoured to provide support to professionals who may be the victims of intimidation for exposing corruption in the workplace. Consequently, the AEPF provides advice and support to whistle-blowers in the governance, accounting, auditing, business, risk management and related fields on how to report unethical behaviour safely and responsibly and root out corrupt and unethical business practices.
Part of the AEPF’s work is to better understand and report on the state-of-ethics in the key professions mentioned and better understand how professionals report unethical behaviour. This year the AEPF intends to meet this objective by surveying a large proportion of its professional members to better understand the perceptions of ethics in South African society, organisations and professions. Additionally, the AEPF also aims to survey personal experiences of whistle-blowing amongst professionals.
Some of the key questions the survey aims to answer include:
- To what degree do professionals view South African society as ethical/moral?
- To what degree do professionals view South African organisations as ethical/moral?
- Do professionals view their professional bodies as ethical/moral?
- How willing are professionals to report unethical behaviour?
- What are the personal experiences of whistle-blowers in their respective professions? Is this good, or bad?
- Is anything done when misconduct is reported in organisations?
- To what extent are professionals intimidated/supported when reporting unethical behaviour?
Results of the AEPF Ethical Practices Survey will be released on the 15th of May 2017 at the Ethics Institute 7th Annual Conference which is taking place at Gallagher Estate in Johannesburg.