The Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) is the peak body for Australian non-government organisations (NGOs) involved in international development and humanitarian action. ACFID aims to lead and unite its Members in action for a just, equitable and sustainable world.

The ACFID Code of Conduct is a voluntary, self-regulatory sector code of good practice. It was developed in 1997 and comprehensively revised in 2010 and 2016. The Code aims to improve international development and humanitarian action outcomes and increase stakeholder trust by enhancing the transparency, accountability and effectiveness of ACFID Members. In conjunction with other aspects of ACFID’s work, the effective delivery of the Code will contribute to the realisation of human rights and the delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Code sets standards for practice rather than standards for results. It goes beyond the minimum standards required by government regulation and focuses on good practice. It articulates ACFID Members’ understanding of good organisational and development practice for NGOs involved in international development and humanitarian action. This articulation is informed by member’s own experiences, the Istanbul Principles for Development Effectiveness, the Core Humanitarian Standard (CHS), the Global Standard for Civil Society Organisations (GS), the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and ACFID’s vision, purpose and values.

The Code applies equally to organisations working in development responses and humanitarian responses. While it does not replace the need for Members engaged in humanitarian responses to adopt and be assessed against the Core Humanitarian Standard, the Code is aligned with the approaches and style of the CHS and the GS. This enables interoperability and ease of interpretation across these other codes.

The Code provides assurance to all ACFID Members’ stakeholders by enabling high standards of practice. A suite of compliance mechanisms is designed to ensure that all Code signatories are compliant with its requirements. It also contributes to continuous improvement through guidance for good practice and a range of professional development opportunities.