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Every one of us, every single day, is faced with ethical conundrums that test our ability to act with integrity. Ethical problems are especially rife in sectors that are on the cutting edge of technology and science, where progress and innovation often go directly up against human rights and responsible (individual and corporate) behavior. 

If you work in the tech sector you’re probably familiar with some of the common ethical problems of the day (data rights and privacy concerns being two that quickly come to mind), but there are many more than you might realize, of both a technical and interpersonal nature. 

One particular area of emerging tech—artificial intelligence—raises almost as many questions as technical problems it solves, and interpersonal relationships with vendors can also be ethically confusing when gifts and favors are proposed. It’s those topics that are featured in these two TechRepublic Premium downloads, which are summarized for you below.

Artificial Intelligence Ethics Policy

Modern AI can do some amazing things, and it has the potential to vastly change our world in the near future. Vast potential comes with vast potential for misuse as well, making the ethics of implementing AI and using it in the business world a minefield that must be deftly navigated and planned for well in advance. 

This Artificial Intelligence Ethics Policy exists to act as a set of guidelines for any organization creating or using AI and machine learning software. It contains broad policies meant to clearly spell out what AI and ML can’t be used for, such as discriminating against certain types of people and disseminating false information, as well as covering ways that organizations can make sure their implementations are as ethical as possible. 

What this ethics policy doesn’t do is tell you how to make sure your organization is acting in an ethical manner. Consider meeting the standards of this policy a destination, with the journey on the way entirely up to your organizational needs and practices. 


Ethics Policy: Vendor Relationships

IT professionals, and leaders especially, are a hot commodity to tech companies. They’re the gatekeepers to entire enterprises worth of IT hardware and software—not to mention the trove of data they have at their fingertips. CIOs often have control over purchases and budgets that sales people will run down the competition to get a piece of; with that kind of money in the air, ethical concerns are sure to pop up.

Expensive gifts, free travel and food, “demo” products that are never asked to be returned, and other seemingly small things can add up to one ethically compromised IT professional: Who doesn’t want free tech and VIP treatment?

It’s issues like those that are the reason for this TechRepublic Premium Vendor Relationships Ethics Policy. Everyone in an organization needs to know what’s acceptable, how to keep proper records, when to say no, and how they’ll be punished if the policy is violated. Like the AI ethics policy above, this is an overview of vendor ethics considerations that can be used as a framework and added to or subtracted from as your organization sees fit.