Ethics Index 2019

The Ethics Index surveys more than 1,000 people with various political and socioeconomic backgrounds about their perceptions of ethical issues and conduct.  This is the fourth year of the study. This year's results found that the Australian society is operating at a ‘somewhat ethical’ level. 

Download the results for information on different sectors, organisations, occupations, issues and influences. 

High-level results 

Action on climate change

  • Nine in ten Australians want the Federal Government to take action on climate change, and a similar number say organisations must also take action  even if it impacts profits and job losses.
  • The study also found that 53% of people believe Australia has an urgent ethical obligation to transition to renewable energy.

Nurses, paramedics and firefighters are seen to be the most ethical

  • When all occupations across all industries measured by the index are amalgamated, the most highly rated ethical professions are ambulance services, nurses and fire services, while federal politicians are seen to be the most unethical, followed closely by state politicians and real estate agents.

Download the 2019 Ethics Index results

DOWNLOAD the report

Previous Ethics Index results

Members can download past results below:

Download the 2018 Ethics Index presentation

Download the 2017 Ethics Index presentation

Download the 2016 Ethics Index presentation

About the Governance Institute Ethics Index

This research was conceived by C3 Content and is conducted by independent global market research firm Ipsos in October 2019. The sample size of around 1,000 was drawn from across the country and spanned the political spectrum. This fourth annual study has been extended to include questions regarding climate change, renewable energy and artificial intelligence.

Media enquiries

View our media release. To receive the Governance Institute Ethics Index, please email 

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