Even though formal codes of ethical conduct for research exist within the scope of individual research institutions, such as research centers and universities, there is no generally accepted ethical code of research for the field of information systems (IS) as a whole. But, should we be concerned about the lack of an ethical code for IS researchers? Is this really an issue of significant importance for the field? Our answer is yes. We do believe that this issue is of vital importance for the field. Given the very nature of research endeavors, few things can undermine the credibility of IS researchers and the IS field as badly as behaviors such as plagiarism and data fabrication, behaviors that most people would regard as unethical. The IS field is made up of a large number of IS researchers distributed in many countries around the world, comprising people with often completely different cultural and social backgrounds. Given this, it is only natural that there exist different practices and beliefs as far as what is ethical and what is not in IS research. Furthermore, there may well be significant obstacles to overcome before all can agree upon an ethical code.
"IS Research Ethics: Defining Ethical, Barely Ethical, and Unethical Behavior" (2000). ICIS 2000 Proceedings. 83.