The Partnership Committee of the National University of Ireland, Maynooth (NUIM) has developed this Code of Conduct for all employees. The Code of Conduct takes account of the implications of the Ethics in Public Office Acts, 1995 and the Standards in Public Office Act, 2001 as well as the Universities Act, 1997. A copy of the Code will be available on request from the Human Resources Department. The Code can also be accessed via the university website. Details of all NUIM Policies may be obtained from the Freedom of Information Office webpage on the NUIM website www.foi.nuim.ie/section 16/policies.shtml
1. Intent and Scope
1.1 The Purpose of the Code is to provide guidance to employees of NUI Maynooth in performing their duties as employees having regard to the Ethics in Public Office Acts, 1995, the Standards in Public Office Act, 2001 and the Universities Act, 1997 and the Statutes and policies of the university including those related to Equality; Grievances; Health & Safety; Protection of Employees from Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Harassment; Staff Student Relationships; Ethics in Research, and Engagement of Staff in Consultancy work.
1.2 Building on a tradition of scholarship and excellence in all aspects of its teaching, learning and research activities, within the liberal arts and
sciences tradition, NUIM is committed to being an Internationally recognised research-led centre of teaching and learning, academic discovery and innovation.
1.3 The core values underlying this tradition are honesty, impartiality,
integrity, collegiality and serving the common good. This Code has been
designed to promote those core values and to provide a framework so that all employees can strive to act in the public interest and within the
confines of the law. The Code is accordingly to be read in this spirit at all times and not in any selective or restrictive manner contrary to its intent.
2. General Conduct and Behaviour
2.1 The general conduct and behaviour of NUIM employees in carrying out their work is an important yardstick by which the performance, honesty, integrity, and impartiality of NUIM is judged and public trust maintained. It is important therefore that our core values underpin the day to day activities of the University.
Employees of NUIM should abide by this Code and must maintain the highest standards of integrity by:
• Ensuring their conduct does not bring the integrity of their position or the
University into disrepute.
• Acting in a way that enhances public trust and confidence.
• Not using their position or the resources of the University for personal gain, for the benefit of persons/organisations unconnected with NUIM or for the benefit of competitors.
• Avoiding conflicts of interest.
Employees of NUIM should observe appropriate behaviour at work by:
• Treating colleagues, students and the public with courtesy and respect.
• Dealing with colleagues, students and the public fairly and promptly.
• Promoting equality and inclusiveness in all dealings.
Employees of NUIM should maintain public confidence in performing their work by:
• Performing their duties with diligence, efficiency and courtesy.
• Making impartial decisions based on examination of facts, merits and law relating to each matter.
• Serving the University conscientiously, honestly and impartially.
• Conforming to the highest standards of public service ethics in the performance of their duties.
3. Conflict of Interest
3.1 NUIM employees must never seek to use their position so as to benefit
themselves or others with whom they have personal, family or other ties. Similarly, they must never seek to use or pass on confidential knowledge acquired in the performance, or as a result of, their employment, or official information which is not in the public domain, so as to benefit themselves, or others with whom they have personal, family
or other ties.
3.2 The Ethics in Public Office Act 1995 has specific disclosure requirements for certain categories of employees which must be observed. Details may be found at: http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/1995/en/act/pub/0022/index.html
4.1 The following practice must be followed in relation to gifts:
• Employees should not solicit gifts directly or indirectly.
• Any gift other than a modest token of nominal value should be courteously but firmly declined, and should be reported to the employee’s Head of Department. Gifts of nominal value that are generally considered as common business or social courtesies are acceptable only as long as they are reasonable in type, frequency and value. If an employee has any doubt as to what constitutes a modest token, they may seek the guidance of their Head of Department who will, if appropriate, return the gift on their behalf.
• Employees should not, by virtue of his/her official dealing with a supplier, accept on his/her own or family’s behalf, any special facility, or discount on a private purchase or service from a supplier.
• Employees of the University should not accept cash as a gift under any circumstances.
5.1 In their official contacts with outside organisations or persons, every care
must be taken by employees to ensure that any acceptance of hospitality
does not influence them, and could not reasonably be seen to influence
them, in discharging their functions.
5.2 No objection would normally be taken to the acceptance of what is
regarded as routine or customary hospitality, the most obvious example
being a business lunch, or attendance at a civic, cultural or festive event. Employees should seek the guidance of their Head of Department if in doubt.
5.3 Where hospitality has to be declined, those making the offer should be
courteously and firmly informed of the standards required by this Code.
It is a general expectation of the University that all members of academic
staff will pursue research in their field of expertise. In carrying out their research, all members must abide by the highest standards of ethics, and work in accordance with the terms of the University’s policy.
7. Regard for University Resources
All employees must:
• Show reasonable care for University property, resources, and funds and not use them, or permit their use, for unauthorized or non-official purposes.
• Incur no liability on the part of NUIM without proper authorization.
• Observe in full and at all times the rules governing the making of claims and payments of any kind to them, whether of salary, overtime, allowances (including travel and subsistence ).
8. Attendance and outside employment.
8.1 The University expects its employees to devote their full attention and
energy to official duties during working hours. Employees are obliged to
attend at work as required and not to absent themselves from duty
8.2 Employees shall not engage in any gainful occupation, other than as an
employee of the University, that might impair the performance of his/her duties, conflict with the interests of the University or be inconsistent with the discharge of his/her duties as an employee of the University.
9. Satisfactory Working Relationships.
9.1 During the course of their day to day business, employees engage with
colleagues, students and the public. Underlying these interactions are the
principles of respect for others, collegiality, equality, a responsibility to
maintain a courteous, efficient and impartial workplace and a duty to
uphold the law
9.2 Employees shall carry out such duties as are assigned to them from time
to time in relation to their employment and such instructions as may be
given in relation to the performance of such duties as provided for in their general terms and conditions of employment.
9.3 In dealing with students and the public, employees should treat
individuals equally, with courtesy and in an impartial fashion. Queries should be dealt with in an open and helpful way with due regard to the protection of confidential information where appropriate.
9.4 Employees must also show due respect for their colleagues at work and
should engender a positive working atmosphere.
10. Verification of Qualifications.
10.1 Offers of employment by NUIM are made on the clear understanding that information provided by the candidate in his or her written application and at their interview is correct in every respect. Where this is found not to be the case, the University reserves the right to initiate the disciplinary procedures which may result in dismissal, or take such other action as it considers appropriate in the circumstances. The University reserves the right to require applicants and employees to provide evidence of academic and/or other qualifications at any time.
10.2 Employees, who have been appointed by virtue of a specific professional qualification or licence, must immediately inform the Director of Human Resources in writing of any change in status, withdrawal of or endorsement of such qualifications or licence.
11. Criminal Convictions.
11.1 An employee who is charged or convicted of an indictable criminal offence must report that fact to the Director of Human Resources. In certain circumstances, this could have implications for their employment. Such information will be treated in confidence, insofar as possible, and no record of it will be kept unless the information is considered relevant to the employee’s employment. If the disclosure of such information necessitates an investigation, it will be conducted in accordance with the principles of fair procedures and natural justice.
12.1 This Code applies to all employees whether full-time or employed on an
atypical basis (e.g. temporary, part-time or fixed-term contract etc). It
also applies where relevant to employees on different forms of leave.
12.2 Breaches of the Code may result in the Disciplinary Procedure being implemented, which may result in dismissal.
12.3 NUIM will circulate this Code (and a policy document on disclosure of interests) to all employees for their retention.
12.4 NUIM will review and amend this Code every five years in consultation with the Partnership Committee.