Penn Purchasing Logo Image with Penn Shield
About Ethical Guidelines
Code of Ethics

All purchasing activities conducted on behalf of the University of Pennsylvania, whether performed by Purchasing Services or other University employees, must be in compliance with the following ethical standards:

  • Avoid the intent and appearance of unethical or compromising practice in relationships, actions, and communications.

  • Demonstrate loyalty to the University of Pennsylvania by diligently following the lawful instructions, using reasonable care and only the authority granted.

  • Refrain from any private business or professional activity that would create a conflict between personal interests and the interests of the University of Pennsylvania.

  • Refrain from soliciting or accepting money, loans, credits, or prejudicial discounts, and the acceptance of gifts, entertainment, favors or services from present or potential suppliers, which might influence, or appear to influence procurement decisions. Supplier-paid site visits or training for University employees are not permitted unless stipulated as part of a formal supplier contract that was reviewed and approved by Purchasing Services.

  • Handle information of a confidential or proprietary nature to the University of Pennsylvania and/or suppliers with due care and proper consideration of ethical and legal ramifications and governmental regulations.

  • Promote positive supplier relationships through courtesy and impartiality in all phases of the procure-to-pay cycle.

  • Refrain from reciprocal agreements, which restrain competition.

  • Know and obey the letter and spirit of laws governing the procurement function and remain alert to the legal ramifications of purchasing decisions.

  • Demonstrate support for socially responsible purchasing to include economic inclusion initiatives and sustainable purchasing programs.

  • Do not use University of Pennsylvania procure-to-pay systems for personal purchases, or use University of Pennsylvania buying power for personal benefit.

  • Conduct international procurement in accordance with the laws, customs, and practices of foreign countries, consistent with United States laws, and University of Pennsylvania financial policies and procedures and the above ethical standards.