Procurement affects and is affected by the public sector organization as a whole, and the community it serves, whether at the local, state, or national level. Therefore, participation in the collaborative development and adoption of Public Procurement Values and Guiding Principles by all stakeholders is desired. As a way to show support for this collaborative initiative, professional organizations may join as a Supporting Organization. There is no time or financial commitment to becoming a Supporting organization. It simply means that the organization supports NIGP’s collaborative efforts to develop public procurement values, principles, and standards of practice. If the organization can share the word about the project with its members, that would be very valuable.

For more information, or to be added as a Supporting Organization, please contact Tina M. Borger, CPPO, Research Director for NIGP at


Values are enduring beliefs or ideals shared by public procurement and our stakeholders about what is and what is not good or appropriate in our actions. Values exert major influence on the behavior of an individual and serve as broad guidelines. We depend on values to construct the frameworks of our professional lives. Values influence how we make choices, what choices we make, and how we are to be judged on our actions by the stakeholders. The proposed Values, listed in alphabetical order, are:


  1. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    Excellent job, Task Force! The 3 pillars, and the 6 values are right on the mark. I strongly support them all, and plan to publish them within my agency immediately. Congratulations on bringing this project to completion!

  2. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    Transparency and Impartiality (or Fairness)are excellent Values. I would suggest that an additional value of Openness be added. With Integrity, it is not just about doing the right thing, it is being seen doing the right thing. Except in matters of security the policies and procedures must be fair, open and transparent to all.

  3. Please consider elaborating on ethical standards. It is briefly mentioned under "Integrity", but its worth expanding to a subsection of its own. From personal experience, folks are constantly asking for clarity on when does conflict of interest apply. I stress "when" because folks need assistance in drawing the line of when certain conditions constitute or are perceived as a conflict of interest.
    Apart from this, I congratulate you on an excellent job.
    Esmeralda Soto

  4. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    Ethics should stand alone as an ideal. Ethical action or reaction must be the guiding principle when politically motivated pressure comes to bear. Political influence needs to be addressed somewhere in these principles and practices.

  5. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    I agree with the posters regarding ethics. Ethics and Integrity are tied together but I think that Ethics need a more predominant explanation.

  6. Liza HankeMay 12, 2010

    Great job but I agree ethics needs to play a leading role

  7. Ethics are important, I agree, but transparency, accountability, impartiality are equally important. The difficulty is really that they are so very interdependant.

    This list overall seems to capture all the key values.

  8. Rick LottMay 12, 2010

    Regarding 'Ethics' and 'Integrity'. I have been in the Supply Chain field for more than 35 years, mostly in the private sector and now the public sector, and have seen many rules and guidelines aimed at Ethic development and behavior. Bottom line is that your belief in Ethics is based on how you are raised, your persnal beliefs, what your are taught, etc. etc. My personal rule regarding Ethics is this: If you have to ask yourself if what your are doing or what is being done is ethically correct, then it probably is NOT. This is where integrity comes in - DO THE RIGHT THING. And as indicated at the end of the second pillar (Public Service); 'as stewards of the public trust, and as servants of the public welfare, procurement practitioners must consistently pursue their professional standards even at the expense of their personal beliefs'. I also believe with the previous comment that Ethics should be the 'more predominant explanation' with Integrity tied into it. If you don't want you or your organization making the evening news or newspaper for doing something unethical, DON'T DO IT.

  9. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    I think the difference between integrity [adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty] and ethical [being in accordance with the rules or standards for right conduct or practice, esp. the standards of a profession] is inappreciable.

  10. Ed MedynskiMay 12, 2010

    Being accountable to the public is a value that encompasses most all others. I like the 6 values and would live by them.

  11. AnonymousMay 12, 2010

    All these values are great. Just to elavorate on Ethics and Morals.

  12. Cheryl MillerMay 13, 2010

    I think you did a great job on these values.Excellent work

  13. ACCOUNTABILITY. I would not call this out separately, in part because Integrity, Impartiality and Service cover all of what is defined for this value. Also, as a separate value, it doesn't fit perfectly with some realities. For instance, many of the substantive decisions in procurement are made by other gov't officials, and my job description does not require or allow me to take accountability for their decisions, so you may want to highlight that distinction. Even for my own actions, while I am personally very motivated to be accountable, if I create a problem, my state government has a legal structure (laws & policies, chains of command & procedures, case law) that will govern how problems I create get cleaned up, much more than an NIGP professional value will. So, this statement uses great words that I believe in, but doesn't seem to be strongly needed. Alternatively, change the word for this value and redefine its meaning - the draft principles under Accountability speak more to a label like Responsible Procurement and Good Value (they don't match the dictionary/plain meaning of "accountable").

    TRANSPARENCY and INTEGRITY and IMPARTIALITY and PROFESSIONALISM. Love 'em pretty much as-is (although I can respect that commenters have a lot to say about ethics and would like you to do some word-smithing). Integrity is a concept that has many aspects (you really should see online Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy entry, despite its intellectual style), but simple is good here.

    SERVICE. As with all of them, I love the words, but wonder what is really meant - this one is a little too ambiguous for me. One thought I have is that while I look for a job applicant's personal disposition to service when hiring employees, beyond that, our obligations to "assist stakeholders" and "meet public needs" are inherent in our employment, our job descriptions. I don't see how listing it as a professional value adds anything missing or distinctively different or important. I think maybe this one should not be called out separately - when I look at the drafted principles under it, I see too much overlap between the ones for Service and Professionalism, and think they could all fit better just under Professionalism.

    ONES TO ADD. As proposed by Aidan on the Project History tab, I agree that Continuous Improvement and Sustainability should both be added as values. Thanks.

    Jon Walton, J.D. CPPB
    State of Oregon

  14. I like the way these values are outlined and I agree with the previous posts that ethics should be mentioned in conjunction with or as the primary objective instead of integrity. Personally, I feel that the difference between ethics and integrity are exemplified by the differences between morals and laws. Both shape our actions, but you are more likely to be held accountable for breaching the latter than the former.

    Also, I agree that Continuous Improvement of processes and self should be incorporated. We need to drive the advances in our field instead of being forced to adapt to or adopt the changes made in other parts of our organizations. It is one way to ensure that we are seen as value added instead of a hindrance.

    Amanda Phillips, CPPB, JD

  15. Good job on this team.

  16. I find these to be excellent yet I wish there was a separate value to encourage continuing education. It's important to better our profession and to do our work in the best interests of the taxpayer and our other stakeholders. Please consider this. Ann

  17. AnonymousMay 17, 2010

    While this section is to the point and is excellent - there needs to be more to the statements. I agree with others ethics stands alone.

  18. I think the values are right on target and will serve as a foundation for how public procurment professionals should and must conduct themselves. I agree that ethics must stand's far to important. I would suggest that consideration be given to adding "Innovation" to the list of values. Without innovation we stand still and opportunity is missed.

  19. AnonymousMay 18, 2010

    Concur - Ethics stands alone

  20. AnonymousMay 18, 2010

    Thank you. I support this list of values. In a worse case scenario, however, we could be exemplary with a process that misses the mark. I suggest an additional value: compassion. Compassion is empathy for others' suffering that prompts taking action to relieve the suffering. Invited to the table, we cannot afford to be apathetic about taking action. Customers expect it and decry its absence. Compassion is necessary to bring about changes for sustainability, health, economic stimulus, disaster response, and other public policies.

    Karen Hartley, J.D., CPPO, State of Oregon

  21. AnonymousJune 04, 2010

    Thanks for your hard work. I would like to add the following as suggestions as far as the summary notes:
    Professionalism should also include Upholding high technical and ethical standards through personal development and education.

    Service: Obligation to assist stakeholders through legal and ethical means to support the public good.

    Great job