Engineer A serves as a peer reviewer as part of the organized peer review program developed to assist engineers in improving their professional practice. When originally chosen as a peer reviewer, Engineer A is asked to sign a confidentiality agreement; whereby Engineer A agrees not to divulge confidential information involving peer-reviewed firms.
As part of the peer review visit, Engineer A visits Engineer B's firm. Following a review of the technical documentation in connection with a series of recent design projects involving Engineer B's firm, Engineer A discovers that part of Engineer B's work covers the execution of a latest technology in the production of state of art automatic air fresheners. Engineer A’s firm has dealt with numerous projects involving timed controlled equipment and are thus direct competitors of Engineer B’s firm. The technology used by Engineer B’s firm is one step ahead of Engineer A’s firm and Engineer A having a major shareholding in Firm A thinks that the commercialization of this latest technology will boost Firm A’s profits by nearly 25%. The state of the art automatic air freshener technology has not been commercialized yet by Firm B and Engineer A has passed on relevant information obtained to one of the engineers at Firm A about equipment to purchase for the production of this latest technology. While still being a peer reviewer at Firm B, Engineer A is frequently providing information to Firm A about the production of this new technology.
When coming to the end of his review at Firm B, Engineer A discovers an expert report which states that the release of this specific substance in the air could endanger public health. However Firm B didn’t change the air freshener it is using for unknown reasons.
problem 1: What are the ethical issues which take place for both engineering firms?
problem 2: List all the five (5) relevant guidelines from the Code of Ethics for Registered Professional Engineers which are valid.