REGULATION OF ETHICS
UNIVERSITY “FAN S. NOLI”
Chapter I: General Provisions
Article 1: Regulation Draft
This regulation was drafted based on Article 17, paragraph 1 of Law No. 9741, dated on 21.05.2007 “On Higher Education in the Republic of Albania”, amended and Article 16, paragraphs 1, 3, 4 and 5, of the Statute of University “Fan S. Noli” Korce.
Article 2: Subject
This regulation lays down the rules of conduct in relations between members of the University, the procedure to be followed for dealing with violations of these rules and the penalties that can be applied in these cases, as well as the organization and functioning of Council of Ethics.
Article 3: Basic Principles
University “Fan S. Noli” Korce (from now on referred to as UK) is a complex body, whose members have different backgrounds, covering diverse roles and responsibilities and have numerous and varied relations.
The existence of a community implies the recognition and respect of individual rights, as well as the acceptance of duties and responsibilities towards university institution, by all the members and community.
UK urges pedagogues, administrative staff and students, as well as any other member of the institution, to fulfill their duties regarding the roles and responsibilities assumed, both individually, as well as in the framework of the collegial decision taking bodies, to respect, to protect and to promote the fundamental values of university institutions, like:
a) human dignity;
b) refusal of any unfair discrimination and evaluation of merit, and individual and cultural differences;
c) the progress of freedom and fundamental rights;
d) recognition and fulfilling of responsibilities and duties towards the community;
e) integrity and professionalism;
f) recognition, excellence and encouragement of scientific studies and research;
g) justice, fairness, cooperation and transparency.
The values set out in this article require applied conduct standards defined:
a) in the content and interpretation of ethical issues set out in Chapter II and III of this regulation;
b) in the content and interpretation of other ethical issues of importance for activities and university life.
Chapter II: Rules of conduct
Article 4: The refusal of any unfair discrimination
All members of the university have the right to be treated with fairness and respect and equal consideration; they also have the right not to be discriminated, directly or indirectly, because of one or more factors, including religion, gender, sexual orientation, personality and personal convictions, physical aspect and skin color, language, ethnic or social origin, citizenship, personal and health conditions, pregnancy, family choices or age.
Direct discrimination is when, based on any of the grounds specified in the first paragraph, a person is treated less favorably than another individual has been or will be treated in a similar situation.
Indirect discrimination is when, a provision, criterion or practice, apparently neutral, can place the categories of persons recognizable due to factors listed in the first paragraph, in a disadvantaged position, except when it is objectively justified by a legitimate aim.
UK opposes any form of unfair social prejudice, any harassment or disturbance that arises because of any of the reasons listed in the first paragraph, any insulting or humiliating practice or idea of moral superiority or supremacy of one group over another.
It is the duty of the university and its members to encourage initiatives aimed at protecting and evaluating the disadvantaged categories, individual and cultural change.
Article 5: Abuses and sexual harassment
UK does not tolerate abuse or harassment of a sexual nature, understood these as discriminatory behaviors that hurt personal sense of dignity, and provide victims adequate protection, free from prejudice.
Abuse and sexual harassment are defined as requests for sexual favors, and / or proposals for undesirable utility of sexual content, and / or behavior or verbal expression offensive that are subject to the personal sphere of sexuality, addressed to a person, and based on his gender or sexual orientation.
The existence of an unequal position between the harassing person and the victim constitutes an aggravating element of abuse or sexual harassment, as can be verified that:
a) avowal by the victim is a condition for admission, employment or appointment at the university; or
b) acceptance or rejection constitute an evaluation element that is important for the recruitment, appointment, attachment or other career decisions dealing with the victim; or
c) if the purpose or effect of behavior creates a hostile climate, in order to reduce the normal performance of work by the victim.
Article 6: Academic Freedom
UK commits itself to creating an environment that favors the individual freedom and autonomy, in terms of the supposed need for progress, teaching, professionalism, wider research and pursuit of knowledge.
In the exercise of academic freedom, university members must maintain a fair and accountable attitude, to provide the scientific community and society with the methodology, results, staffing and ethical impact of research.
Members of the university should also commit themselves to cooperation and respect on academic decisions of organizational character, in order to be at the service of efficiency, equity, fairness and transparency of university administration.
Article 7: Intellectual property and plagiarism
Members of the university community should respect the norms dealing with intellectual property and plagiarism. Plagiarism is defined as full or partial attribution of words, ideas, research or other findings of the author himself or another, starting from the language in which these are presented or distributed officially, or in the absence of citation of sources. Plagiarism can be intentional or effect of a non-proper attitude.
Article 8: Conflict of interest
There is a conflict of interest when the private interest of a member of the university, with the exception of the student, is truly or potentially inconsistent with the interests, not only economic, of the university. A member of the university that in an action or circumstance has conflict interests with those of the university, shall immediately notify the authority, the responsible person or hierarchically superior, and should refrain from reviews or possible decisions, dealing with it.
Article 9: Nepotism and favoritism
UK condemns nepotism and favoritism, which are contrary to human dignity, the assessment of the individual merit, professionalism and academic freedom, justice, fairness and transparency, and requires teachers and every other member of the University of refraining from such habits and to refer to the Council Ethics cases of such suspicious behavior. Nepotism or favoritism is when a pedagogue or a member of the administrative staff, directly or indirectly, uses his/her authority or ability to give benefits, to favor tasks or appointments, to influence the outcome of contests or selection procedures related in particular, but not exclusively, with the initial phase of training in the university career or in prioritizing children, family or persons living with them.
Article 10: Abuse of position
Any member of the university is not allowed to use, directly or indirectly, the authority of his academic position or his office in order to force other members of the university to provide services advantageous for the first, only in cases it is not envisaged as a legal obligation of both.
Article 11: The use of university resources
Members of the university are responsible for the proper use of resources, so that they can justify the costs and provide the required documentation or account, at the request of the university. No member is allowed to use or allow other foreign individuals or entities to use research equipment, spaces or human, financial or material resources of the university, for the purposes of a personal nature and / or for different purposes from those of the university institution, or in any case not expressly approved by the latter.
Article 12: Use of the name and reputation of the university
All members of the university must respect the good name and not bring harm to the reputation of the university. Unless it is an expressed authorization, any member of the university is not allowed to:
a) to use in improperly way the logo and the name of the university;
b) to use the reputation of the university connected with professional activities, jobs, tasks, or other outdoor activities, and not paid;
c) to express closely personal views using the name of the university.
Article 13: Gifts and benefits
Members of the university must not seek and must reject any non-symbolic offer for gifts or benefits, which influence, even indirectly, the development of university activities. Members can accept offerings of gifts or benefits with symbolic economic value in cultural meetings, visits or public scientific meetings, and always if their admission does not affect, even indirectly, in the development of university activities.
Article 14: Respect of decisions
It is the obligation of all members of the university to comply with all decisions taken by the authorities and the governing bodies of the institution.
The dress code and the proper outlook is an obligation of all members of the university community.
The use of alcohol, drugs and tobacco is prohibited in university campus environments.
Statements, writings or publications of any kind, that undermine or denigrate the image of the university or its staff, are strictly prohibited.
University members are obliged to respect individuals’ rights of privacy and to treat in confidence all the information that belongs to them on this basis.
Interventions in the database of the university, with the aim of unauthorized use or counterfeiting, constitute serious violations of the Regulation of Ethics.
It is the obligation of all members of the University to refrain from behaviors, that may consist of insult, slander remarks disparaging or inappropriate behavior or other similar that are contrary to the norms of ethical-moral society and unacceptable in a university institution.
Chapter III: Supplementary Provisions
Article 21: The Council of Ethics
1. The Council of Ethics consists of four members and is chaired by the Rector. One of the members performs the function of secretary. The Council operates in a collegial manner and takes decisions by a simple majority. Council meetings are called by the Rector, who normally presides the sessions and determines and holds the discussion order of the issues. Council meetings are helt when at least 2/3 of its members are present.
2. The Council of Ethics:
a) has advisory functions, of research, investigation, and control for the implementation and compliance of the provisions of this Regulation;
b) favors, where possible, the amicably resolving of possible disputes;
c) may propose to the Rector disciplinary action against violators of the provisions of this Regulation;
Article 22: Respect and violation of the Regulation of Ethics
In accordance to the general provisions defined and rules of behavior, it is also the duty of pedagogues, administrative staff, students and any other member of the university:
a) to be familiar with the content of this regulation;
b) to be familiar with the standard of conduct included in this regulation;
c) to address the Council of Ethics for advice on the application of this regulation or proper conduct connected with the cases provided by this regulation;
d) to respect this regulation, even by signaling immediately the Council of Ethics for suspicious behavior.
Confirmed violation of this regulation may constitute a motive for the award of punitive measures.
Article 23: Procedures for dealing with violations
1. In case of violations of the Regulation of Ethics, for issues expressly provided on it or other consisting anyway in violation of ethical and moral norms of society, the Council of Ethics commits its members to investigate, mediate and if it is very necessary to set up a Group of Hearing.
2. The council can be driven to action on the basis of a complaint. It keeps a protocol register, in which it lists all the cases of violations that it addresses. The handling way of violations will generally be progressive, based on the nature of the violation and of the circumstances and facts that emerge during the review.
3. When the Council of Ethics receives notification of a violation of the Regulation of Ethics, the Rector appoints one of the members to undertake the role of a mediator and /or bring to light the facts. The appointed member starts working initially by checking if the accused person (member of staff or student) has or not violations recorded in the records of the council register. If there are not prior violations recorded, he contacts the parties involved in the issue, hoping to find the reason for mediation and when from the circumstances it appears that the fault is not too severe, he can try for a friendly settlement between the parties, which will not require the involvement of a Hearing Group. If no agreement is reached, a hearing session it is required, and the appointed member continues to gather facts from all parties involved. In cases when the accused person has prior violations recorded, it is requested a hearing session and the appointed member begins the research for gathering evidence, aiming of preparing the case for the hearing session, at the end of which drafts a written summary, and sends it to the Rector. The Rector contacts even the other members of the Council aiming of calling a Hearing Group. The secretary takes the minutes of the session. The council decision is taken by a majority of votes of the present members and it must be based on clear and convincing evidence.
4. After hearing the opinion of each of the voting members, the Rector decides on the sanctions. The decision must contain a summary of the facts and circumstances of the case, the outcome of the vote, the penalty and is signed by all the members who participated in the voting. It must reflect even the opposite opinions.
5. In cases when the Rector, after hearing the opinion of the members of the Council considers that the evidence is not conclusive or it is insufficient, he can set up a Group of Hearing in accordance with the specifics of the problem, which after examining the case, forwards the result to the Rector. The Rector further presents it to the Council of Ethics for review and voting and then finally decides. Rector’s decision is final and irrevocable.
6. Appointment of sanctions, as a rule will have a progressive character, unless the violations are serious. It will be based on the type of violation, intensity, repeatability and income effects.
Article 24: The sanctions
When ascertaining a violation of the provisions of this Regulation or other circumstances that are not expressively defined on it, but which consist on behaviors which are inconsistent with ethical and moral norms of the society, the Council of Ethics may propose to the Rector the award of punitive measures as follows:
For the personnel of the institution:
a) written warning;
b) dismissal notice;
a) written warning;
b) expulsion from school for a year;
c) expulsion from the university (deprivation of the right to study gain);
d) expulsion from the university.
Article 25: Distribution and implementation of the Code of Ethics
It is the duty of the university to support the wider distribution of this regulation, through reports, meetings, didactic activities and any other means deemed appropriate for this purpose. University intervenes immediately, by any means for the implementation of this regulation, when it becomes necessary.