Code of Ethical Conduct

Engineering ethics are founded on professional competence, personal integrity and social responsibility. Setting ethical standards helps build public trust in our profession. IPENZ takes ethics and professionalism very seriously, holding our engineers to account on behalf of the New Zealand public.

A new Code for engineers

A new Code of Ethical Conduct came into force on 1 July 2016. This Code is the backbone of what it means to be a professional engineer in New Zealand. It sets out professional engineers’ duty to the public and to each other.

The Code guides both IPENZ members and Chartered Professional Engineers (the Code of Ethical Conduct for Chartered Engineers can also be seen on the Registration Authority website). IPENZ members include professional engineers, technologists and technicians.

We have spent three years developing and consulting on the new code and it has support from the wider engineering profession.

Read the Code of Ethical Conduct

Download a printable version of the Code (PDF 349KB)

Differences in the new Code

The new Code includes some changes from our previous Code of Ethics:
  • Engineers now have an obligation to report adverse consequences. This means that you must take action if you observe an engineering matter of concern.
  • Engineers are now required to report significant breaches of the Code by other engineers.
  • The new Code makes explicit engineers’ obligation to keep your knowledge and skills up to date, and to treat others with respect and courtesy.

Read our frequently asked questions about the new Code

How do engineers put the Code into practice?

Our Practice Note Engineers and Ethical Obligations goes through each of the eight principles of the new Code of Ethical Conduct and provides interpretative guidance. It helps you understand why ethics is at the core of engineering practice and why ethical practice is key to your reputation.

Read the practice note

Continuing professional development

We are running half day 'Ethics for Engineers' courses around the country from June.

If you would like to arrange an in-house course, please contact us directly on

Resources for employers

We encourage employers to promote the new Code. You can download the following resources:

Who does the Code cover?

The Code binds IPENZ members undertaking any engineering activities, including professional engineers, technologists and technicians. The IPENZ Code of Ethical Conduct is the Code of Ethics prescribed by the Board in accordance with Rule 4.2 of the Rules of the Institution. The obligations in this code are identical to those for Chartered Professional Engineers as contained in Part 3 of the Chartered Professional Engineers of New Zealand Rules (No 2) 2002 Amendment Rules 2016.

Former Code of Ethics

The current Code of Ethical Conduct replaced the former Code of Ethics on 1 July 2016.

Read the former Code of Ethics (PDF 160KB)