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Serving the profession

Prof David Manning

David Manning (former Professional Secretary) delivers his valedictory address with news of fresh services.

Geoscientist 21.06 July 2011

The last few months have seen two key achievements - the revision of the Code of Conduct, and the introduction of an accreditation process for company training schemes.

The Code of Conduct governs all Fellows, and our understanding of the code and how it affects our professional behaviour is tested when we apply for Chartered status. Professional Committee appointed a working party to review it, and a revised version approved by Council is now available at

The revised code of conduct more clearly articulates the responsibility we bear to those who engage with individual Fellows – as clients, students or colleagues, addressing Relationships, Behaviour, and Public Interest. Importantly, the new Code embeds a commitment to lifelong learning through continuing professional development (CPD). We all participate in CPD – but we are less good at recognising and recording what we do. The revised Code explicitly reminds us of our responsibility to maintain an appropriate level of CPD, at all stages of our careers.

The Code also addresses what we cannot do, especially when dealing with the public or others who rely on us for our professional integrity. We are reminded that we should know the boundaries of our specialist expertise within geology, and not presume that we can pronounce with authority on all aspects of the discipline.

It reminds all those who are not Chartered that they should inform clients and other interested parties of this when taking on work. The designation ‘Chartered Geologist’ or ‘Chartered Scientist’ is a clear public demonstration that an individual has been tested by more experienced peers, and has been shown to possess competencies in his/her chosen field within geology. A Fellow, however senior, cannot make such a claim, if required, without having to produce a bundle of evidence that a client may be unqualified to judge.

We have also introduced a system that allows us to accredit Company Training Schemes in much the same way that we accredit University courses. Full details can be found from the website’s Chartership pages. Accrediting these training schemes allows us to speed up the process of application for chartership.