Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date



adjudicative, administrative, Canada, ethics, justice


In this article, I explore both the idea and practice of adjudicative ethics in the context of administrative justice in Canada. This is a large topic and one which is particularly timely as accountability, transparency and conflict of interest are all renewed areas of interest for governments across Canada. Elsewhere, I have suggested it is time to approach administrative justice as a justice system rather than as a disparate set of tribunals and boards. One way in which this coordination can be expressed is through a shared process of accountability for the conduct of adjudicators. My hope in elaborating adjudicative ethics is to provide a foundation for such an evolution of administrative justice.This analysis is divided into three sections. In the first section, I discuss what is distinct about adjudicative ethics (for example, distinguishing this field from the ethics of public servants or judicial ethics). In the second section, I consider some existing schemes which address adjudicative ethics and their limitations. In the third section, I canvass what remains unsettled and the challenges ahead.