It’s easy for organisations in a wide variety of industries to pay lip-service to ethical practices. In the same vein, it’s easy for entities to think they are operating and conducting business ethically when they just aren’t. When studying, interning or volunteering abroad, sometimes well-intentioned individuals and organisations enter into an unequal power dynamic. In this dynamic, they unintentionally position themselves as the would-be saviours of a “poor” community.
Here at GVI, we don’t want to be guilty of that. We want to be better and try harder.
Ethical best practice has always been at the heart of our work as a social enterprise operating in the international development space. As ethicality in global development continues to evolve, we strive to participate in this process and to constantly develop our understanding of ethical best practice. Where we assess that practices are still the best fit within the local and global contexts where we operate, we work with our stakeholders to apply them.
We haven’t always done everything right. However, we recognise that it is not possible to reach a final point on the ethicality journey. And it has been, and will always be, one that we take.
This badge is a manifestation of our journey of reflection and growth. We call it the Badge of Ethics, and it symbolises everything we believe about ethicality in sustainable development. It was developed through a process of collaboration. It took several months and the intuition, experience and research of many team members to arrive at a symbol we felt could begin to capture the way we see ethicality as an organisation.