APSC 450

Week 3



Professionalism requires a set of attitudes and behaviors that may be related to:

Generally the role of engineers is to demonstrate professionalism and adhere to code of ethics. Specifically engineers: protect the public and serve public interest. Where “public interest” means the benefit to the general public — net benefit vs costs to the public.

To protect the public, engineers minimize risk of failure that impact public safety. To serve public interest, engineers reduce negative society, environmental, and economical impact.


EGBC regulates engineering practices in BC. They uphold and protect public interest with respect to engineering.

Self regulation is regulation of a profession by members themselves. In BC, engineering is self-regulated. The alternative is direct regulation by government bodies.

EGBC, along with other associations make up Engineers Canada which includes Canadian Engineering Accredidation Board (CEAB) for accreding engineering programs and Canadian Engineering Qualification Board (CEQB) for developing national guideines for engineering qualifiations and standards.






Recall from week 2, engineers-in-training status are granted to graduated people working towards P.Eng. Experience requirement is under P.Eng supervision.

Iron Ring

A ritual to serve as a reminder of the obligations, ethics, and humility associated with the profession.

Conflict of Interest

A conflict of interest arises when a professional has a special interest that influences their professional duties.

Special interests typically consists of:

Professional duties typical consists of:

COI could result in:


Types of COI

We want to avoid any of these cases.

Cause of COI

Fundamentally COI is a battle between self-interest against interest of others. Self-interest is from automatic mental processes, which leads to latent biases such as:

Automatic processes are opposite of controlled processes. They are done subconciosuly and its influence on decision-making is difficult to eliminate, i.e. COI is inevitable.

Automatic processes Controlled Processes
Fast (parallel processing) Slow (serial processing)
Effortless Effortful
Involuntary Voluntary
Inaccessible to introspection Introspective
Acts on self-interest Acts on professional duties

Since automatic processes cannot be eliminated, if we foresee COI, we must: