“Integrity as a Way Forward”, a Mediterranean Conference on Academic Integrity organized by Dr Teresa (Teddi) Fishman, Executive Director of the International Center for Academic integrity (ICAI) and hosted by Deree - The American College of Greece.
Academics, community leaders, scholars, researchers, and students took part in the conference. We had the pleasure to listen to three influential speakers; Venia Papathanasopoulou who is an Attorney-at-Law at the Supreme Court; and Nikos Passas, Professor of Collective Action, Business Ethics and Compliance; and Teddi, who has served as the Director of the International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI) since 2008.
Majd Dowani, Programme Coordinator and Ellen Goldberg, Head of Integrity Education, presented on “Developing Integrity Champions - Integrity Education with Integrity Building”. They talked about how an integrity champion may be a citizen or student who monitors public projects and about engaging young people in contributing to the reduction of corruption and improvement of the delivery of public services.
Through many of our workshops with academics and business people, whether in Greece or almost anywhere else - we pointed out how the students’ newly acquired skills are also marketable skills for future employment. Businesses, in their discussions with academics, look for honest and skilled employees - like our integrity champions – and bring them into the workplace to help strengthen the level of integrity.
Many participants were excited about the work we do, especially the monitoring by students and citizens. They expressed their interest in doing the same kind of monitoring in their own universities and colleges. Most of them were interested in incorporating more of the ‘feeling’ and ‘doing’ approaches into their academic integrity teaching, to encourage students to carry out activities that help them make an emotional connection with the work, and to actually do something ‘real’ that gives the monitor a feeling that they have improved someone’s life.
It was a productive conference where participants shared their own experiences and their own methods and tools in fighting corruption and enhancing Integrity.