In all evaluations, there needs to be clarity about what will be considered ethical practice. That is why CES developed its Ethics Guidance.
The Guidance promotes ethical behaviour and decision-making in evaluation. It is intended to facilitate evaluators’ values-based reflection so they make ethically sound decisions in every situation and context.
The Guidance starts from the certainty that, above all, evaluators value doing their work well. It is then anchored on the CES’ three core professional values, which members are expected to abide by to do their work well.
To express this value, members:
a) Value and uphold the well-being of persons and Peoples through respect, privacy, confidentiality, fairness, beneficence, inclusion, protection from harm, disclosure of risks, promotion of social justice, and reduction of inequity.
b) Protect and promote fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, including legal rights to life, liberty, security, and equality.
c) Recognize Indigenous sovereignty and the protocols and governance of distinct rightsholders; address colonial and systemic oppression and resulting inequities, according to recommendations from Indigenous Peoples, including: UNDRIP principles, TRC Calls to Action, and MMIWG Calls to Justice.
d) Protect all of nature by promoting ecological justice and addressing factors underlying environmental racism, biodiversity loss, and climate change.
a) Seek accurate, complete, and valid evidence, as defined in context.
b) Are honest, authentic, and transparent, including about their own competencies and conflicting values.
c) Consider and declare any potential or perceived conflicts of interest in their evaluation work.
a) Demonstrate professionalism in their conduct, maintain independence of thought, and behave with integrity.
b) Are accountable and manage resources responsibly.
When values conflict, evaluators must decide which are more important in the particular situation and context (see Appendix 1: examples of ethical dilemmas). To help guide, reflect on, discuss, develop, and document the rationale for their values-based ethics practices and decisions, evaluators should consider the following:
To help them answer the questions above, evaluators must discuss with others involved in or affected by the evaluation and/or seek advice in the evaluation community.