Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Science

2001 Edition
| Editors: Saul I. Gass, Carl M. Harris

Ethics in the practice of operations research

  • Joseph H. Engel
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/1-4020-0611-X_304

Ethics in the practice of operations research is the set of moral standards to which a practitioner of OR/MS should adhere in doing his or her work, so that the analyst can do relevant work responsibly and objectively, and be perceived as doing so.

The OR/MS worker must apply the basic principles of scientific methodology in such a way as to be “transparent” in the way the work is reported. A technically qualified but disinterested party should be able to verify that the work has been carried out in a valid manner, based on data that have been gathered and analyzed correctly.

Operations research, as distinguished from the physical sciences in general, deals with interactions between people and the systems they operate. With this in mind, we will discuss the OR/MS analyst's ethical requirements operationally, in terms of beginning, conducting and reporting a study (as covered in Caywood et al., 1971, pp. 1129–1130).


The OR/MS analyst should discuss thoroughly with...

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  1. [1]
    Caywood, T.E., Berger, H.M., Engel, J.H., Magee, J.F., Miser, H.J., and Thrall, R.M. (1971). “Guidelines for the Practice of Operations Research,” Operations Research 19, 1123–1158.Google Scholar
  2. [2]
    Wallace, W.A., ed. (1994). Ethics in Operations Research, Elsevier, New York.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph H. Engel
    • 1
  1. 1.BethesdaUSA