It is true that we cannot coin a definition of ethical performance in public administration that could be uniformly applied and enforced. It is also difficult to set standards for judging what is ethical and what is not, although a laid down list of unethical activities is already available for reference books changes in IAS. We even subscribe to the view that morality and ethics are relative terms. Still, a responsible public administration is imperative for any democratic set-up and it should include ethical functioning. We cannot simply bifurcate the two by saying that ethics deals with morals and values while public administration is about actions and decisions. A broad definition of ethics would be ‘A systematic enquiry into human conduct in order to discover both rules that ought to govern our actions and the goals we should seek in life’. In other words, ethics aims at developing the standards for human conduct. According to Terry L. Cooper, “Ethics involves ultimate ends” Though ethics is the science of morals, a theoretical examination of morality, it is not just confined to the right rules of conduct Test Series for IAS, now it is widely being associated with professional standards rather than being merely debated at a philosophical plane. The different ideas on ethics can help define administration if concentration is shifted to meaningful research.
In public administration, ethics focuses on how the public administrator should question and reflect in order to be able to act responsibly. Ethics requires inquiry and contemplation into truth, that is seeking the right answer to one’s question with the help of ethical deliberations, the administrator questions the ‘adequacy’ and ‘meaning’ of proposed action in the light of obligations to the organization as well as to the public. In the words of Gibson Winter, “Ethical reflection means that ethics looks to the future, it is concerned with the constituted social identity only for the sake of the project being constituted, it looks to the past for the sake of the future. It judges the past because the future bears new possibilities’. All about study material for best IAS Coaching Center in Delhi.
In the present administrative set-up, these types of guidelines governing ethical behavior are conspicuous by their absence. There is also no mechanism to ensure that the administrators function in a situation that can help them in making appropriate decisions, keeping in view the interests of the people, the environment and the overall objectives of national policies. Such an atmosphere would denoted and organization that can help them in participating in ethical deliberations without being conditioned by external pressures, a workplace which can facilitate conflict resolution by attaching right priorities to the given values and obligations and, finally and ambience that can assist them to tackling every type of behavior and rules deviation without much difficulty. This is very essential if administration has to be made more responsive and accountable.
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