INTRODUCTION to the Code of Conduct
Public Affairs professionals are a vital part of the democratic process, acting as a link between the world of business, civil society, and policymakers. These professionals must therefore undertake to observe the highest professional and ethical standards.
The EPACA code of conduct is a 12-point code of best practices for public affairs professionals working in consultancies in the EU sphere. The code ensures that professionals in the EU-facing public affairs consultancies act with the utmost professionalism and in complete transparency. Signatories to the code all commit to abide by it, acting in an honest, responsible and courteous manner at all times and seeking to apply the highest professional standards.
The Code is regularly reviewed and updated to ensure it reflects best practices, extremely important in a fast-moving sector in constant evolution, responding to shifting social, economic and political landscapes as well as new communications technologies. The latest revision, completed in the first quarter of 2013, is the product of an extensive review by the EPACA management committee with independent legal advice. The EPACA Code of Conduct is the basis for all such codes in the EU affairs marketplace.
The full text of the EPACA Code of Conduct follows.
This code of conduct applies to all activities undertaken by EPACA members in the context of their EU Public Affairs work. Our work as public affairs professionals contributes to a healthy democratic process, acting as a link between the world of business, civil society and European policy-makers. The signatories to this code are all committed to abide by it, acting in an honest, responsible and courteous manner at all times and seeking to apply the highest professional standards.
When carrying out the activities described above, public affairs practitioners shall:
(a) identify themselves by name and by company;
(b) declare the interest represented;
(c) neither intentionally misrepresent their status nor the nature of their inquiries nor create any false impression in relation thereto;
(d) neither directly nor indirectly misrepresent links with EU institutions;
(e) honour confidential information given to them;
(f) not disseminate false or misleading information knowingly or recklessly and shall exercise proper care to avoid doing so inadvertently;
(g) not sell for profit to third parties copies of documents obtained from EU institutions;
(h) not obtain information by dishonest means;
(i) avoid any professional conflicts of interest;
(j) neither directly nor indirectly offer or give any financial inducement to any elected or appointed public official, or staff of their institutions and political groups;
(k) neither propose nor undertake any action which would constitute an improper influence on them;
(l) only employ EU personnel subject to the rules and confidentiality requirements of the EU institutions;
All signatories agree that they and all individuals acting on behalf of their companies will adhere to this Code and will avoid actions likely to bring discredit upon the profession or the Association. The signatories further agree to be subject to the disciplinary rules of EPACA (as set out in the Statutes and Internal Regulations, extract attached) in case of alleged breach of the Code. The signatories will meet annually to review this code.
I hereby subscribe to the above code (name, signature & date):
on behalf of (firm):
Download the code of conduct.