CIfA professionals and Registered Organisations have committed to comply with the Code of conduct and to be accountable under the relevant procedures. Effective investigation of alleged unprofessional conduct is essential to protect public and client interest, to safeguard the reputation of practitioners and organisations unfairly accused, and to enhance trust in our profession.
The professional conduct process exists to investigate allegations of unprofessional conduct against accredited CIfA members (PCIfA, ACIfA and MCIfA) and, in the new process, against Registered Organisations. The new process, like the current one, investigates allegations of a breach of the CIfA Code of conduct, giving regard to CIfA Standards and guidance and policy statements.
CIfA’s handling of professional conduct allegations is regularly reviewed by independent external auditors. The two most recent reviews, published in The Archaeologist, have found that while the Institute has acted fairly, the processes have been over-long and thus unkind to the parties involved. The CIfA Board has been alert to these issues, agreeing with the findings, and has approved changes that will streamline the process, will reduce the number of participants in a peer review procedure that depends on voluntary input, and will deflect attempts to frustrate the process rather than provide evidence needed for it to reach a conclusion.
The new procedure is set our in revised regulations, with consequential changes to the Registered Organisations regulations. The Regulations for the registration of organisations (complaints procedure) have been withdrawn.