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Integrity - use of values or principles to guide action in the situation at hand.

Below are links and discussion related to the values of freedom, hope, trust, privacy, responsibility, safety, and well-being, within business and government situations arising in the areas of security, privacy, technology, corporate governance, sustainability, and CSR.

An End to the Radwanski Affair, 2.5.04

Final Report to Parliament on Actions Arising from the Auditor General's Report on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

I don't think that I could have come up with a more dry and dull title had I actively worked at it for a week. Yet this report, released this week from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, speaks directly to issues of integrity and privacy.

Anyone likely to be reading this blog will probably be familiar with the unfortunate early termination of George Radwanski's term as Privacy Commissioner after revelations of internal turmoil in the office, and allegations of inappropriate use of funds. The Auditor General report on these issues made a number of recomendations and this report is the new Privacy Commissioner's final response.

Two things are of note here:

The first is that the new Commissioner appears, from the look of the recently revamped OPC web site, to have instituted a much more open process for the office. Approximately $200,000 of an estimated $350,000 outstanding for issues such as inappropriate payouts has been recovered.

The second and more relevant point is that this report speaks directly to both integrity and privacy. There is little doubt that Mr. Radwanski was a strong voice for privacy. We will leave aside disagreements about Mr. Radwanski as a voice for privacy within the privacy community for now. David Zussman of the Public Policy Forum has a nice overview of the some of the lessons learned from this debacle. Most of the reports and statements can be found here.

Integrity and privacy are values that have to be executed from the inside out. Ask George Radwanski, last seen taking an economy fare train out of Ottawa.


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"We shall need compromises in the days ahead, to be sure. But these will be, or should be, compromises of issues, not principles. We can compromise our political positions, but not ourselves. We can resolve the clash of interests without conceding our ideals. And even the necessity for the right kind of compromise does not eliminate the need for those idealists and reformers who keep our compromises moving ahead, who prevent all political situations from meeting the description supplied by Shaw: "smirched with compromise, rotted with opportunism, mildewed by expedience, stretched out of shape with wirepulling and putrefied with permeation.
Compromise need not mean cowardice. .."

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, "Profiles in Courage"


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