The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Ethics

Key information

Report wrongdoing

UNOPS takes all reports of alleged wrongdoing seriously. The Internal Audit and Investigations Group (IAIG) has sole responsibility for conducting investigations into misconduct within UNOPS. IAIG is the principal channel to receive allegations of fraud and corruption.

How to report wrongdoing

Contact the Ethics Office

At UNOPS, upholding high ethical standards and acting with integrity guides everything we do – from the policies we implement to the projects we support to the communities we serve.

Our commitment to meeting the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity is fundamental to ensure we successfully deliver on our mission.

Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, we uphold the principles of independence and impartiality at all times. We proactively think about ethical issues across all areas of our work and expect all individuals working with UNOPS to speak up if they see something that is not right.

UNOPS Ethics Office

The role of the Ethics Office is to foster and nurture a culture of ethics, integrity and accountability at UNOPS. We do this to support our colleagues to deliver on our mission to build a more sustainable future and support communities around the world.

UNOPS Ethics Office is independent and impartial, maintaining confidentiality at all times.

We give confidential advice to both management and personnel about ethical issues which arise and how to manage them.

The Ethics Office supports UNOPS personnel around the world by:

  • Developing standards and supporting training and capacity building

  • Providing confidential advice and guidance to personnel

  • Protecting personnel against retaliation for reporting misconduct (OI.Ethics.2022.01 Protection against retaliation)

  • Administering the Financial Disclosure and Conflict of Interest Programme

  • Providing guidance to management to ensure that our policies, procedures and practices are aligned with and reinforce the standards of integrity called for under the Charter of the United Nations

What is retaliation?

Retaliation is when an individual suffers, or is threatened with detrimental action for a good faith report of wrongdoing, cooperating with an audit or investigation, or other fact-finding activity.

Speak Up

When individuals see something that does not meet UN and UNOPS standards, all personnel have an obligation to speak up.

If comfortable, personnel are encouraged to speak directly with the individual causing the concern or talk to a supervisor. Personnel can also report suspected wrongdoing (including illegal, unethical or unsafe acts) via UNOPS Speak Up  – our secure, confidential and independent hotline.

Protection against retaliation

When speaking up about something that is not right, all personnel have a right to protection against retaliation. UNOPS has zero-tolerance for retaliation and the Ethics Office takes its mandate to protect those who speak up very seriously.

Retaliation discourages individuals from speaking up when they see potential wrongdoing or unsafe acts and is a serious breach of our ethical standards. All personnel, on all contract modalities, are entitled to protection against retaliation.

Individuals who believe they may be experiencing retaliation can make a request for protection against retaliation with the Ethics Office.

Contact the Ethics Office

Enquiries for ethics advice to the Ethics Office are confidential. We provide confidential advice on ethical issues and review requests for protection against retaliation for the reporting of misconduct.

Email: ethicsofficer@unops.org


Ethical Conduct

All UNOPS personnel are expected to act in accordance with the Standards of Conduct for the International Civil Service issued by the International Civil Service Commission. Other key documents are:

Human Resources, Ethics and Culture Operational Directive

Protection against retaliation Operational Instruction 

Outside Activities Operation Instruction

Financial Disclosure Operational Instruction 

Gifts and Hospitality Operational Instruction 


Ethical standards of UNOPS suppliers

UNOPS requires its suppliers to adhere to the highest ethical standards, both during the bidding process and throughout the execution of a contract. UNOPS has a zero tolerance policy towards unethical behavior and corrupt practices, including bribery, extortion or coercion, fraud and collusion.

Read UNOPS Procurement Policies for more information