Use of the IEEE Codes of Conduct to Resolve Legal Disputes

TitleUse of the IEEE Codes of Conduct to Resolve Legal Disputes
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsAiken, P, Stanley, RM, Anderson, L, Billings, J
Date Published2010
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number0018-9162
KeywordsA , A.0 , AUTOMATIC , Concurrent , Contracts , D.2.0.a , D.2.1 , D.2.10 , D.2.10.e , D.2.10.f , D.2.10.i , D.2.17.d , D.2.9 , D.2.9.m , DATABASES , E , ENGINEERING , enterprise , ethics , Formal , H , H.2 , H.2.7 , IEEE , information , K.5.m.a , K.6.1 , K.7.4.a , Law , legal , LOGIC , Project , requirements , RISK , services , software , standards , technology
AbstractWe describe an important trend: increasing use by the US judicial system of CoCs to resolve disputes. Specifically, CoCs are being used to judge, literally, the performance of non-code subscribers and unaffiliated organizations. We illustrate successful use of an IEEE CoC at arbitration, resulting in a multi-million dollar judgment against an organization having no IEEE members. Our fictionalized 'case' is a compilation of real cases – an ERP system implementation failure. Plaintiffs faced a common dilemma: an inability to determine applicable ‘standards of care.’ These disputes were won as a direct result of using the IEEE CoC to compare and contrast human and organizational behaviors. Although the implications of this factual trend are unclear, use of such a technique has reached a 'tipping point.' We hope to spark discussion leading to more beneficial outcomes for the IEEE Computer Society, the IEEE, our professional community, and for the information technology (IT), business and consulting communities.