Ethics

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Decisions about how to configure and live within the built environment have ethics dimensions that are sometimes hard to see. It is nevertheless the duty of planners to ensure that political goals for building development and the provision of public service are implemented without being influenced by pressure by special interests and their superiors. They must be attentive to the public and must explain their actions to their political masters.

Description

The primary obligation of urban planners is to serve the public interests and recognize the comprehensive as well as long-range nature of planning decisions. Planners should as well avoid conflict of interests and not seek or offer other favours and benefits. To respect the professional code of ethics includes also maintaining the public confidence through not using confidential information for financial gain. Protection of personal data (that urban planners could have from participatory activities with citizens, including use of questionnaires, etc.) and of sensitive data is another issue, as is proper consideration of gender aspects. While the public interest is a question of continuous debate, both in its general principles and in its case-by-case applications, it requires a conscientiously held view of the policies and actions that best serve the entire community.

Entry points for ethics aspects in security-related urban planning

Footnotes and references