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Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson An interactive storyboard This file uses hyperlinked PowerPoint pages to illustrate the proposed design for an online course.

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Presentation on theme: "Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson An interactive storyboard This file uses hyperlinked PowerPoint pages to illustrate the proposed design for an online course."— Presentation transcript:

1 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson An interactive storyboard This file uses hyperlinked PowerPoint pages to illustrate the proposed design for an online course. Even with placeholder graphics and greeked text, it allows a person to interact with the storyboard as a student would interact with the course. For several stakeholders who were new to online learning, this storyboard vividly showed how their expertise with real-world issues would become credible challenges in the course. Click arrow to continue

2 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson About the design This storyboard presents the design for one vignette in a series dealing with ethics and procurement. Material in the storyboard is not necessarily complete or accurate; its purpose is to show how someone would work with the online course. The next screen (not part of the storyboard) shows the high-level design for a vignette. Some screens include a Design notes box. Like the high-level design, these are not part of the storyboard. Click the box to display comments about the screen. Click arrow to begin

3 Make a decision Describe setting Introduce characters What do you want to do? Talk to someone else Check resources 2. Video clip1. Introduction 4. Initial decision High-level design for “interactive storyboard” vignette 3. Learner choice Replay vignette A.Xxxx B.Xxxx C.Xxxx D.Xxxx A.Xxxx B.Xxxx C.Xxxx D.Xxxx 5. Ethics officer feedback 6. Final answer? 7. Final feedback If choice is unacceptable, return to choices. If choice is acceptable, two options: Return to choices (explore other options) Conclude vignette * * * *Note: from any of the “talk to” screens, “resource” screens, or from the initial decision screen, the learner can select any of the main options (talk to, check, or make a decision). Summary for this vignette 3a 3d 3b 3c 8. Conclusion Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson continueback

4 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Sensitive information Mike Dawson is a government contracting employee. Jim Carpenter is an employee of Megafirm, Inc. Mike and Jim have known each other since grad school. They worked at the same company for five years. Then Mike went to work in government procurement, where he’s been for nearly ten years. (Select Continue to view the vignette.) continueback

5 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson (the video, scene 1) (scene one: Mike’s office; Jim drops by) Jim:Hey, Mike – am I interrupting? Mike:Of course not, Jim. What brings you over here? Jim:Oh, I just had a meeting upstairs with one of our project teams. How are things? Mike:You know how it is – too many projects and not enough time. Jim:Oh, yeah, I understand that. (pause) Listen, Mike, can you check something out for me? Mike:Sure, if I can. Jim:Well, one of my guys called me from Phoenix. It seems your office awarded a sole source contract on some further work on the GRIPS project to Broward Industries. You know, Mike, my guys always thought we could compete for that contract. And they can't get any sensible explanation for the sole source from your people. They're talking about protesting, but I don't want to muddy this up if your people have a good reason for what they're doing. Can you find out anything about this for me? Mike:Let me see what I can dig up and I’ll get back to you. Jim:That’d be great. (fade out) Estimated duration: 50 seconds continueback Design notes

6 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson (the video, scene 1) continueback (scene one: Mike’s office; Jim drops by) Jim:Hey, Mike – am I interrupting? Mike:Of course not, Jim. What brings you over here? Jim:Oh, I just had a meeting upstairs with one of our project teams. How are things? Mike:You know how it is – too many projects and not enough time. Jim:Oh, yeah, I understand that. (pause) Listen, Mike, can you check something out for me? Mike:Sure, if I can. Jim:Well, one of my guys called me from Phoenix. It seems your office awarded a sole source contract on some further work on the GRIPS project to Broward Industries. You know, Mike, my guys always thought we could compete for that contract. And they can't get any sensible explanation for the sole source from your people. They're talking about protesting, but I don't want to muddy this up if your people have a good reason for what they're doing. Can you find out anything about this for me? Mike:Let me see what I can dig up and I’ll get back to you. Jim:That’d be great. Estimated duration: 50 seconds The actual course would include video. The storyboard simply shows the planned dialogue onto this screen. The graphic in the upper right is a placeholder for the video clip.

7 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson (the video, scene 2) (scene two: Mike in Karen’s office; Karen led the team that made the sole-source decision.) Karen:(handing Mike a document) Here’s the justification for the sole-source decision we made for Broward. It’s not very long, but I think it’s clear. Mike:(looking at the document) So, what’s the story? Karen:As you can see, we found there was a very strong case for the sole-source. Broward developed the first-generation version of GRIPS. They know it like no one else does. Mike:That’s what this “intimately familiar” language is about? Karen:Exactly. Mike: (reading) And you go on about “expertise with complex details of the software.” Karen:We all thought this was straightforward. We’re looking for some major upgrades in a tight timeframe, and we didn’t see any way another company could deliver them. Mike:Yes, I see this language about “could not reasonably be made by a company that lacked Broward's extensive and long-term familiarity with the product.” (pause) So tell me, Karen – what if another company claimed they could do as good a job as Broward or anyone else? I mean, what if they feel like filing a protest? Karen:Honestly, Mike, if I were some other outfit, I wouldn't bother to protest. They’d spent a lot of time and effort, but I don’t see how they’d win. Speaking only for myself, I think the program office would take it very personally. They’ve got better things to spend their time on. Jim:Well, thanks, Karen. I appreciate your finding this out for me. Karen:No problem. I’m sorry it wasn’t good news. (close-up of document in Mike’s hands, clearly market “source selection sensitive.” Fade out) Estimated duration: 1 minute 25 seconds continueback

8 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson If you were in Mike’s place… What should Mike do now that he knows the reason for the sole-source award? Talk to someone else Check some resources Make a decision See the vignette again Design notes

9 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson If you were in Mike’s place… What should Mike do now that he knows the reason for the sole-source award? See the vignette again The design allows three paths. The learner can: Consult others (as in real life) Check certain resources Make a decision Each path allows movement to the other two paths. Eventually the learner must make a decision. Talk to someone else Check some resources Make a decision Click your choice.

10 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson People Mike can talk to These are people Mike could talk to about the situation: Mike’s Boss Mike’s Wife Joan (coworker) Check some resourcesMake a decision Click someone’s picture to get their opinion. Or:

11 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Resources These are resources Mike can consult about Jim’s request for information on the sole-source award to his competitor: FAR Part 3 (improper practices) 5 CFR 2635 OGE Standards of Ethical Conduct 41 USC 243 Restrictions on disclosure Talk to someone elseMake a decision Click your choice.

12 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson What should Mike do now that he knows the reason for the sole-source award? He can tell Jim what he learned and where it came from. There’s no reason not to. Sole-source happens all the time. It’s no secret that the winners “have unique capabilities.” (click the best response) He should tell Jim, “I couldn’t tell you anything even if I did know. I wish I could, but I can’t.” He can give Jim the highlights, but should avoid any mention of where the information came from. (“This is what I’ve heard.”) He should avoid an awkward situation by referring Jim to Karen, who managed the sole-source decision. Talk to someone elseCheck other resources

13 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Mike’s Boss If I were you, Mike, I wouldn’t let Jim know where your information came from. Just say you checked into things and you heard such-and-such. Mike’s Boss Talk to someone else Check some resourcesMake a decision

14 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Mike’s Wife I don’t think it’s a good idea for you to say anything to Jim. Isn’t there some office he could go to to find out what he wanted to know? If his company doesn’t like the decision, they can stand up for themselves and protest or whatever. You have to keep business and friendship separate. Mike’s Wife Talk to someone else Check some resourcesMake a decision

15 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Joan (coworker) Joan, one of Mike’s coworkers You have to make up your own mind, but this isn’t something I would do. What happens if Jim mentions that you gave him details from the source selection document? I’ll bet he wouldn’t be too happy if his company were sole-source for something and people were divulging information about the rationale to his competition. Talk to someone else Check some resourcesMake a decision

16 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson FAR Part 3: Improper Business Practices FAR Part 3 From FAR Part 3: Subpart 3.1--Safeguards Sec Definitions Source selection information means any of the following information which is prepared for use by a Federal agency for the purpose of evaluating a bid or proposal to enter into a Federal agency procurement contract, if that information has not been previously made available to the public or disclosed publicly: (1) Bid prices submitted in response to a Federal agency invitation for bids, or lists of those bid prices before bid opening. (2) Proposed costs or prices submitted… (in online version, link to full text) Talk to someone else Check other resources Make a decision

17 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Office of Government Ethics / Standards of Ethical Conduct From 5 CFR 2635, Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch Sec Basic obligation of public service … (b) General principles. The following general principles apply to every employee and may form the basis for the standards contained in this part. Where a situation is not covered by the standards set forth in this part, employees shall apply the principles set forth in this section in determining whether their conduct is proper. (1) Public service is a public trust… (in online version, link to full text) 5 CFR 2635 Talk to someone else Check other resources Make a decision

18 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Title 41, United States Code, Section 423: Restrictions on Disclosure United States Code Title 41, Chapter 7, Section 423. Restrictions on disclosing and obtaining contractor bid or proposal information or source selection information (a) Prohibition on disclosing procurement information (1) A person described in paragraph (2) shall not, other than as provided by law, knowingly disclose contractor bid or proposal information or source selection information… (in online version, link to full text) 41 USC 243 Restrictions on disclosure Talk to someone else Check other resources Make a decision

19 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson How does the decision measure up ethically? Go on to the next screen to get advice from the local ethics officer. Your opinion is that Mike can tell Jim what he learned and where the information came from. continue

20 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Federal employees have to safeguard any non-public government information. We can’t give preferential treatment to any organization or individual. And a federal employee can’t disclose source selection information before a contract is awarded. It’s good that Mike can work with his old Navy buddy, but he doesn’t want to seem to tilt in the buddy’s favor. The ethics officer continue

21 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson How does the decision measure up ethically? Go on to the next screen to get advice from the local ethics officer. Your opinion is that Mike should tell Jim, “I couldn’t tell you anything even if I did know. I wish I could, but I can’t.” continue

22 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson It really makes sense not to cut any corners. If Mike’s always aboveboard when talking to contractors, whether he knows them or not, then he’s not running a risk of being called partial. If Jim or his company has a legitimate gripe, there are routes they can take to resolve it. The ethics officer continue

23 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson How does the decision measure up ethically? Go on to the next screen to get advice from the local ethics officer. Your opinion is that Mike can give Jim the highlights, but should avoid any mention of where the information came from. continue

24 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson I think Mike has to look at both the spirit of the law as well as the letter. What does it mean to say that federal employees must safeguard information? Would Mike be violating confidentiality by talking about the reasons for decision even if he doesn’t discuss the source or how reliable it might be? The ethics officer continue

25 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson How does the decision measure up ethically? Go on to the next screen to get advice from the local ethics officer. Your opinion is that Mike avoid trouble by referring Jim to Karen, who managed the sole-source decision. continue

26 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson It’s pretty clear that a federal employee can’t divulge information about source selection. If Mike tells Jim to talk to Karen, who helped make the decision, then Mike isn’t divulging anything. The question is, what can Karen do? Is Mike making a referral or simply passing the buck? The ethics officer continue

27 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Given this discussion, how should Mike decide? (click the best response) He can give Jim the highlights, but avoid any mention of where the information came from. (“This is what I’ve heard.”) He can avoid an awkward situation by referring Jim to Karen, who managed the sole-source decision. Mike can tell Jim what he learned and where it came from. There’s no reason not to. Sole-source happens all the time. It’s no secret that the winners “have unique capabilities.” He should say to Jim, “I couldn’t tell you anything even if I did know. I wish I could, but I can’t.”

28 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Your opinion is that Mike can tell Jim what he learned and where it came from. After all, sole-source happens all the time, and it’s no secret that the winners “have unique capabilities.” This would be an unacceptable decision. It’s not consistent with the general ethical principles in the Office of Government Ethics standards. It violates FAR Part 3, section , which bars disclosure of bid, proposal, or source selection information. It violates 5 CFR 2635, which protects nonpublic information. It violates 41 USC 423, which deals with disclosing information about bids, proposals, and source selection. Return to the choices.

29 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Your opinion is that Mike should tell Jim, “I couldn’t tell you anything even if I did know. I wish I could, but I can’t.” This would be the best possible decision from an ethical standpoint. It’s consistent with the general ethical principles. It avoids any disclosure of information about the sole-source decision. If you wish, you can revisit the choices and see the opinions, explanations, and possible outcomes of a different decision. Otherwise, you can conclude this vignette. Return to the choices. Conclude this vignette.

30 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Your opinion is that Mike should give Jim the highlights of the sole- source decision, but avoid any mention of where the information came from. This would be an unacceptable decision. Mike would still be disclosing information in violation of FAR Part 3, section , which bars disclosure of bid, proposal, or source selection information. 5 CFR 2635 protects nonpublic information. 41 USC 423 disallows the disclosure of information about bids, proposals, and source selection. Return to the choices.

31 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Your opinion is that Mike avoid trouble by referring Jim to Karen, who managed the sole-source decision. This would be a technically acceptable decision, in that Mike is not divulging any confidential information. By not saying anything, he’s not violating any laws or regulations. At the same time, though, he’s placing an unnecessary burden on Karen. Mike should know that she can’t say any more about the decision than he can. One of the other choices would be a better decision for Mike to make. You can return and select another choice, or go on to conclude this vignette. Return to the choices. Conclude this vignette.

32 Copyright © 2004 David Ferguson Summary Federal employees have an obligation to protect non- public information. In procurement, it’s especially important not to divulge information about bids, proposals, or source selection. Principles that Mike could have followed include: Acting impartially Adhering to applicable laws and regulations Avoiding actions that create even an appearance of a violation of ethics. end


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