Work of engineers in the real life
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The impact of the work of engineers in the real life of the public is significant. Usually, the engineers practice their profession starting from being a team member and the team is managed by Senior engineers who further guide them to improve the accuracy and effectiveness in their work. Senior engineers are usually concerned with the management of plenty of human resources and the leadership including any aspect they may have control on. It could be people, materials or finance.
While they focus on these things, they let the team members who are junior engineers to deal with the technical aspects of the job. The technical directions usually come from the middle-level managers present in the organizational structure. The management expects the responsibility and Engineering Management from these employees and as a professional engineer, it is the candidate's responsibility to have a proper sense of control over the resources and community he handles. Unlike other professional engineering is unique as all the aspects involved in this profession is of crucial importance.
Skills of an Engineer
The engineer is expected to have high-level up skills and update himself various other skills related to his industry for career advancement. An engineer is expected to have a strong motivation to provide service because anything and everything he does, may have a crucial impact over the public in one way or the other (Lynch, and Kline).For an engineer, the entire public could be the ultimate clients while the other professions do not have such an intense impact.
Ethics and Professionalism in Engineering
Engineering is closely involved with the human relation and then the aspects of business and Commerce, it has a significant impact. Ethics include not just law and morals but also an extra focus on the rightness. An ethical code is a set of rules that states the criteria for brightness in a broader scope and in the detailed perspective to ensure engineer makes use of professional conduct in his profession.
The essence of professional codes is that they keep the engineer worthy with the help of conduct and the trust that the community and his colleagues places upon him. These codes help the engineer to be confident enough to be able to act in any given situation. If the professional attitude is lagging then the ethical problems will automatically arise.
The loyalty of each engineer to his job reflects his identity as a professional engineer. The loyalty does not only lies towards the organization rather it should also lie in the effort put in their jobs.
When an engineer is ethical he has no place for an instrumental view, which is usually expecting something in return that is of tangible form. The value system of a man who is professional does not look for anything instrumental which may potentially affect his professional status.
Engineers and Society
The engineers are responsible for their own image and if they expect the public to appreciate the work they have done then there is no other choice than excelling in their job. The engineers must be aware of the technological advancements more than the information technology people do you only to ensure that they are being implemented in the designs.
Their involvement in the research and development is critical and that contributes to the personal ethics of an engineer. This profession is closely related to innovation and that is why an updated knowledge becomes mandatory.
Now that the engineer has the relevant technical knowledge updated and the expertise in the job already, the effort and commitment it must be in the limelight.
Code of Ethics
In every profession, there are various positive qualities involved in the code of ethics. Qualities like dedication, honesty, and diligence are some common set of components in ethics. That would be the first set of ethical codes while the second set of policies framed with respect to the particular job occupation.
On the other hand, the third category of professional ethics is related to moral awareness and social awareness of how the job may impact the community and environment. In this case, as discussed earlier, the contribution of an engineer to a broader audience is high as compared to the other jobs.
The skills that are mandatorily required for engineering ethics include the following.
Moral awareness is the proficiency of an engineer to recognize the moral issues with respect to the engineering concepts and its implementation.
Cogent moral reasoning is about understanding, evaluating and clarifying the issues that are present on the opposite end of moral issues.
Moral coherence is another quality that ensures the engineer is able to form a consistent perspective based on the facts regarding a concept.
Moral imagination is about discerning the other options that can act as responses to the moral issues to coming up with Creative Solutions for practical issues.
Moral communication is making use of a common ethical language or a skill to support moral views.
Further, the ability to be reasonable and tolerate the diversity E and respect the culture including appreciating the possibilities of moral hope is some must for an engineer to be ethical.
Bodies for Ethical Codes
There are bodies like IEM Code of Ethics, Board of Engineers’ Code of Professional Conduct, Association of Consulting Engineers, Malaysia (ACEM) that list out the setup ethical rules and engineer must follow (VORST).
In an industry that focuses on designing the society itself, there is a need for liabilities. Engineers can create pretty much anything that can drive the world and most of the equipment we use is created by engineers. As a result, the maximum of their works can impact the lives of many people and if it is done wrong it could impact then harmfully. This is why the engineers are expected to have certain qualities to ensure an effective product or project is delivered.
There are several engineering societies apart from what is been listed above that developed codes that the engineers must look into when it comes to ethics and Standards and these rules help them how to efficiently work. These codes also ensure the safety of society that is impacted by the work of an engineer.
One important ethical behavior an engineer must have is the responsibility. The idea of responsibility and how it is being applied to the profession of Engineering is clearly stated by the IEEE. The code present in the IEEE state that an engineer must accept the responsibility of the decision taken during the job and ensure that the decisions are consistent and in compliance with the safety and welfare of the public.
In addition, the engineer is supposed to disclose the factors that might, in fact, the public are the environment. This particular code is closely related to the honesty component because if honesty is the core idea, it requires a person to be responsible initially.
The engineers must accept the fact that their projects might involve sudden actions are components that might result as potential harm to the people and to maintain the safety a sense of responsibility is required. Given the fact that an engineer is trained to look into all these aspects, it is important for him to take control of the situation as well. They have an obligation to do their job as it is meant to be perfectly completed.
If anything goes wrong in between, then the accountability is also expected from the engineer and they must find ways to improve the design and fix the design flaw how to make sure no future problems occur.
In the event that these faults are not addressed and the design process to the end stage, then the end product is definitely harmful to the community. Understanding the impact, the engineer must be diligent and attentive throughout each stage of the process to ensure the job is done properly.
Another important aspect of engineering ethics is that the engineer must be hard working. The profession contains tasks that are sometimes very challenging to be completed properly. The engineers might be required to put in all their efforts to insert the project turns out as good as it is planned.
Value of Professional Integrity
The ethical codes present in the engineering profession commonly state the fact that engineering is one is the most important and learn the professions of all and as a member of this profession, the engineers must show highest standards of integrity and honesty.
Professional integrity is one of the appreciated values of an engineer and it is achieved by practicing the profession while building value hierarchy regarding ethical conduct. This has to remind in harmony with each other. When such harmony is achieved, a person will be able to resolve the moral contradictions or conflicts that may arise during the professional conduct. Without making use of such resolutions for conflict or values, the person will not be able to achieve harmony and may end up with certain illogical or contradicting actions which will impact the ethical position of the engineer.
The ethics handbooks present today do not emphasize the educational aspect of practicing moral virtues. On the contrary, the ethical theories are emphasized more. The handbook presumes that if a person has these virtues then their degree is responsible for it. However, their real-time experiences and diligence contribute to the person acquiring these virtues.
Also, these virtues could be learned eventually even if the engineer does not have it naturally. Ethics handbooks or not based on on the perspective that an engineer practices his profession and relating it to the concept of professional engineering ethics.
Professional Obligations Vs. Social Obligations
Professional obligations of an engineer include Dealing with conflict of interest and finding ways to properly deal with the situation. Maintaining the confidentiality of the customer details or anything of that sort would also come under professional obligations.
On the other hand, social obligations include keeping the society informed about the potential dangers are compromises that could come along. If a project is taking up search shape, then and the community must be informed of the safety measures that they can take.
For example, that is considered a bridge is being built and it would require the people from the neighborhood to vacate the place for a while to ensure no casualties occur. If that is the unavoidable case, it should be communicated to the people how to make them aware of the situation.
Also, when it is being built, a board must be kept to indicate that the bridges under construction and no other vehicles may use the bridge. These are some basic duties of an engineer that he must know and follow.
To understand the impact of Engineers work and the need for being ethical, let us consider an example of a civil engineer constructing a bridge. Without focusing the reasons as to why the engineer must be ethical, an emphasis on the negative impact of the lethargic attitude on the lack of ethical behavior can be laid. If the bridge collapses, the consequence could not be easily fixed nor can it be tolerated.
Like these, there are a certain set of obligations for the engineer to check and differentiate to ensure the project is completed smoothly. Without an understanding of specifics like these, it would be hard for an engineer to ethically complete his job.
Being capable of completing the job is not the only aspect an engineer must be focusing on. He must have knowledge of the potential impact of his job to understand the importance of ethical practices in his profession. Having an ethical code to follow and being diligent with the design and implementation of a concept is extremely critical for an engineer since he might be dealing with a lot of lives actually. Every job has its own set of ethical codes to be followed. It is a must for a professional to follow these ethical guidelines.