Ethics in Construction Industry

Topics: Ethics, Construction, Business ethics Pages: 17 (4564 words) Published: January 18, 2011


Professional Ethics and Construction5

Professional Ethics5

The case in Ethiopia13

Ethical Issues15

Construction Business and Ethics22



The group would like to take this opportunity to thank our Ethics and Legal Environment Instructor, Dr. Tilahun Goshu, who gave us the chance to explore the ethical issues in the construction industry at present time.


Construction is the largest industry in the world, benefiting all stakeholders. Improved productivity thought virtuous collaborating will help in bringing to the owner a quality facility, in a shorter time, at lower cost. When we look to ethics in the area of construction quality, time and cost are the area of concern to focus. The architect/engineer focuses on the value-added design activity rather than spending effort to resolve a problem arise between the disappointed owners and the contractors. Contractors focus on their strengths of quality of work and efficient building execution in general.

The construction industry today has been built on the needs of the world’s inhabitants to provide shelter, conquer distances, harness energy, create public spaces, protect from natural disasters, and build historical monuments. These basic human needs have not changed over time even though the process and environment in which the designer and constructor operate have become increasingly more complicated. Government regulations, environmental permits, and other bureaucratic controls continue to grow. Projects also continue to get larger and more technical, requiring more specialized people, high-tech equipment, and better control systems. This trend will require that tomorrow professionals have technical, business, organizational, ethical, and leadership know-how to complete their construction projects successfully, the key word being ethical.

In this dynamic world it is easy to lose track of what is right. The way the world is going, it requires a complete and much deserved effort from any business or professional if success is expected. I the midst of the struggle to become the best, there is an opportunity for unethical practices to emerge and hurt the industry. For the building and designing professions, the incalculable value of human life demands nothing less than the highest moral considerations from those who might risk it otherwise. Engineers, architects, project managers and contractors, therefore, have the fundamental right of professional conscience.

Ethics generally constitute

“1. A system of moral principles, by which human actions and proposal may be judged well or bad, or right or wrong.

2. The rules of conduct recognized in respect of a particular class of human actions.

3. Moral principles, as of an individual”, (delbridge etal, 2000).

The general concepts of ethics are applicable in any area of organization, industry or profession. In this paper, we will try to see construction ethics in two major areas: Professionals in the Construction Industry and the businesses in it.

Professional Ethics and Construction

Professional ethics, for any profession is an important subject that describes a profession’s ethical guideline that each member of a given profession follows. Construction is vast field and contains many professionals in it like Civil Engineers, Architects, Contractors, Surveyors, Designers and Drafts Men. Each profession in the construction industry has ethical dilemma that requires due attention. Before describing the relationship between professional ethics and construction, we should fully understand what professional ethics means and thus it is the next point.

Professional Ethics

The professions have always been linked with the notion of 'service'. Thus, a profession has been described as a group of people organized to serve a body of specialized knowledge in the interests...
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