Engineering is not always about technology. The engineering function has traditionally focused on building something using different variations of math and science.
This job was recently transformed into a combination of more business functions. John Hooker's white paper states, "Engineers are increasingly involved in startups where they are making business and technical decisions." The multifunctional team consists of members from engineering, sales, manufacturing, marketing, and warranty.
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Today many engineers have multiple hats to wear and are even referred to as "project engineers." Wikipedia defines project design as "overcoming the boundary between engineering and project management". As the role of engineering has changed over the years, engineers face more ethical choices. Engineers must design and serve customers ethically.
There are many different professional societies that engineers can join. Some of these societies include, but are not limited to, the Institute of Electronics and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Institute of Project Management (PMI), American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), and the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE). Each of these organizations has a similar code of conduct for its members.
Extract from the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) Code of Ethics:
"Engineers in fulfilling their professional duties:
1-Maintain safety, health, and public welfare first.
2- Services only in their area of competence.
3- Make public statements only objectively and honestly.
4- Acting for each employer or customer as a loyal representative or trustee.
5-Avoid Fraudulent Actions.