ACM Updates Code of Ethics

July 17, 2018

ACM has updated its Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct. The revised Code of Ethics addresses the significant advances in computing technology and the growing pervasiveness of computing in all aspects of society since it was last updated in 1992. ACM’s Code of Ethics is considered the standard for the computing profession, and has been adopted by computing professionals, organizations and technology companies around the world.

The ACM Code of Ethics is a collection of principles and guidelines designed to help computing professionals make ethically responsible decisions in professional practice. It translates broad ethical principles into concrete statements about professional conduct. This update of the ACM Code of Ethics expresses the experiences, values, and aspirations of computing professionals around the world, and it captures the conscience of the profession. It affirms an obligation of computing professionals, both individually and collectively, to use their skills for the benefit of society.

“The best professional organizations make ethical conduct the foundation of their service to the community, and the most tangible expression of that commitment is a code of ethics,” said ACM President Cherri M. Pancake. “Because computing is now inextricably linked into almost every aspect of society, the actions of computing professionals have more impact than ever before. It is imperative that everyone in our field act responsibly.”

“The Code has not been designed as an algorithm for solving ethical problems; rather it serves as a basis for ethical decision making,” explained Donald Gotterbarn, Co-Chair of ACM’s Committee on Professional Ethics (COPE) and Professor Emeritus at East Tennessee State University. COPE led the project to update the ACM Code of Ethics via a transparent, two-year process, seeking input and direction from computing professionals around the world.

Read the ACM news release.