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Ethics and Standards of Practice

The Ombuds adheres to the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. This means that the Ombuds' services are:


The Ombuds conducts her work independent from any other office or department at Stanford.  In order to effectively carry out her role, the Ombuds works hard to merit the trust of all members of the Stanford community.


The Ombuds is “neutral” and not an advocate for any party in a dispute, regardless of their association with Stanford. The Ombuds considers the interests and concerns of all parties and seeks ways to create mutual understanding and resolve disputes with the purpose of helping to achieve a fair and equitable outcome.


Ombuds' services are informal and “off the record.” The Ombuds has no formal authority to change any decision or policy at Stanford, nor does she conduct formal investigations. The Ombuds will explain and clarify the formal processes available at Stanford, but she does not have a role in them. Talking with the Ombuds does not put Stanford “on notice” of any potential legal claim or policy violation. If you wish to let Stanford know of a potential ethical, policy or legal violation, the Ombuds will work with you to find the proper channel for making that complaint.


Confidentiality is essential to the work of the Ombuds. The Ombuds will not identify you or discuss your concerns with anyone without your permission. The only exception to confidentiality is if the Ombuds believes that disclosure of information is necessary in order to prevent an imminent harm.