Podcasts


1. Matthew Townsend responds to question about what happens when you are forced to work to standards that are less than desirable.
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2. Charles Meredith responds to concern about the influence of clients' constraints of price on reducing quality of work.
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3. Charles Meredith responds to question about when it appropriate for the courts to decide outcomes. Alhough they are not always in a position to make a correct technical judgement, by and large they get it right and the precedents are very helpful. VCAT decisions in Victorian net gain are an example of a positive influence of the courts on ecological process. Murray Raff adds that discussion of ethics and standards is not limited to the courts. Groups like EIANZ are just as capable of reaching a concensus of understanding on a matter and that can also have influence.
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4. Matthew Townsend comments on wind farm guidelines that promote wind energy but do not provide any consistent best practice guidance for ecological consultants.
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5. Matthew Townsend responds to comments on short-comings of the legal model.
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6. Charles Meredith comments on setting of standards by the industry. Engineers have never been shy about doing this where they do not exist elsewhere. Ecologists tend to sit around ask when government are going to set standards. We as professionals, have a good idea what they are, can produce them ourselves and publish them e.g. as the EIANZ standards. Decision makers will measure decisions against those until something better comes along.
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7. Charles Meredith comments on some examples of trying to set standards for consultants without involving the profession and the problems this causes.
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8. Alan Chenoweth responds to a question from Matthew Townsend about the structure of EIANZ's accreditation and training processes, explaining the way that the Certified Environmental Practitioner process works and the role of the policy and practice committee.
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9. The discussion proceeds on the ramifications of having an ethical conduct committee where consultants could be charged for unethical conduct.
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10. EIANZ is establishing an alignment with the St James Institute for ethics but the discussion continued on the subject of EIANZ's own role in supporting ethical conduct and training amongst peers. Matthew Townsend continued by describing the process established for barristers, which includes senior mentoring and formal ethics advice, which is used often by those in the legal profession. A second model was suggested by Alan Chenoweth based on mentoring by people specifically appointed to individuals.
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