– Code of Conduct and Ethics Administrative Guidelines –

Trade Knowledge and Intellectual Property

Defining the Conflict

The general position is that products or technology developed by employees in the course of their employment are the property of the Government.

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Examples - Trade Knowledge and Intellectual Property

  • A systems analyst is in violation of the Code if he tries to market a software package which was developed for government use on government time.

  • An employee would be in violation of the Code if she provided information about a confidential process to her outside employer while still employed by government.

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Compensating Employees

There may be unique situations in which a Deputy Head may consider compensating employees for their role in the development of a product or technology. Some factors to consider might include:

  • whether the project was employee or employer initiated

  • the role of the employee in the development

  • the relative benefit of marketing the product to the department, Government, the employee and the public.

In these circumstances, departments should consult with the Public Service Commissioner's office.

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About this Guideline

Authority:   Code of Conduct and Ethics Regulation
Application:   Organizations Under the Public Service Act
Effective Date:   March 18, 1998
Contact:   Labour Relations

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