Code of Professional Conduct
The Executive Board of the Western Economic Association International has adopted July 8, 2020, the American Economic Association Code of Professional Conduct (adopted April 20, 2018), along with the AEA’s Policy on Harassment and Discrimination, as the code of conduct of the WEAI. These codes of conduct are given below.
AEA Code of Professional Conduct (adopted April 20, 2018)
The American Economic Association holds that principles of professional conduct should guide economists in academia, government, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector.
The AEA's founding purpose of “the encouragement of economic research” requires intellectual and professional integrity. Integrity demands honesty, care, and transparency in conducting and presenting research; disinterested assessment of ideas; acknowledgement of limits of expertise; and disclosure of real and perceived conflicts of interest.
The AEA encourages the “perfect freedom of economic discussion.” This goal requires an environment where all can freely participate and where each idea is considered on its own merits. Economists have a professional obligation to conduct civil and respectful discourse in all forums, including those that allow confidential or anonymous participation.
The AEA seeks to create a professional environment with equal opportunity and fair treatment for all economists, regardless of age, sex, gender identity and expression, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, health condition, marital status, parental status, genetic information, political affiliation, professional status, or personal connections.
Economists have both an individual responsibility for their own conduct, and a collective responsibility to promote professional conduct. These responsibilities include developing institutional arrangements and a professional environment that promote free expression concerning economics. These responsibilities also include supporting participation and advancement in the economics profession by individuals from all backgrounds, including particularly those that have been historically underrepresented.
The AEA strives to promote these principles through its activities.
AEA Policy on Harassment and Discrimination
As stated in the AEA Code of Professional Conduct, the AEA seeks to create a professional environment with equal opportunity and fair treatment for all economists, regardless of age, sex, gender identity and expression, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, health condition, marital status, parental status, genetic information, political affiliation, professional status, or personal connections.
The AEA does not tolerate harassment or discrimination in any of its activities. Unacceptable behavior includes, but is not limited to:
Solicitation of emotional or physical intimacy despite expressions or indications that it is unwelcome
Solicitation of emotional or physical intimacy accompanied by real or implied threat of personal or professional harm
Intentionally intimidating, threatening, harassing, or abusive actions or remarks (both spoken and in other media)
Prejudicial actions or comments that undermine the principles of equal opportunity, fair treatment, or free academic exchange
Deliberate intimidation, stalking, or following
Harassing photography or recording
Sustained or aggressive disruption of talks or other activities that undermine free academic exchange
Physical assault (including unwelcome touching or groping)
Real or implied threat of physical harm
Individuals violating this policy may be subject to disciplinary action. The AEA reserves the right to take such actions including, but not limited to, removing an individual from an AEA activity without warning, prohibiting an individual from participating in any future AEA activities, terminating an individual's AEA membership, and notifying an individual's employer. Retaliation against any person who files a complaint, or assists in the investigation of such a complaint, is also a violation of this policy and may likewise be subject to disciplinary action.
The AEA views it as the responsibility of each individual member to be proactive in helping to mitigate or avoid harm when the member witnesses any unacceptable behavior.