Conference Papers  |    |  September 24, 2012

Software Engineering Ethical Decision Making and Professional Responsibility

Conference paper by Peter Oriogun, Olatunji Akinbule, Chinwe Ibecheozor and Zayyad Nyako.
Presented at the 2012 African Conference for Sofware Engineering and Applied Computing.


Software systems cut across miscellaneous spheres including medicine, business, warfare and aerospace. And as thus, the actions of software engineers have a non-trivial effect on software users and stakeholders. Therefore, more than ever, software engineers are faced not only with technical adequacy of software but also with the non-technical concerns, primarily, the ethical impact of their decisions through the software development process. With accountability abounding to varied constituents, professionals are constantly faced with conflicting loyalties or decisions and must make practical and ethically grounded choices. Although, there are codes of ethics in Software Engineering to guide software engineers on ethical decision making, it is not enough because it is general. A more specific approach is necessary as well. This paper proposes to explore practical ethical decision making processes, professional responsibility of software engineering practitioners and also a solution to the generalization of the present code of ethics.