Professional body

Professional body

A professional body or professional organization, also known as a professional association or professional society, is an organization, usually non-profit, that exists to further a particular profession, to protect both the public interest and the interests of professionals. The roles of these bodies have been variously defined to include: "a group of people in a learned occupation who are entrusted with maintaining control or oversight of the legitimate practice of the occupation;" also a body acting "to safeguard the public interest;" organisations which "represent the interest of the professional practitioners," and so "act to maintain their own privileged and powerful position as a controlling body." [ [ "Professional body" at Analytic Quality Glossary] ]

Such bodies generally strive to achieve a balance between these two often conflicting mandates. Though professional bodies often act to protect the public by maintaining and enforcing standards of training and ethics in their profession, they often also act like a cartel or a labor union (trade union) for the members of the profession, though this description is commonly rejected by the body concerned.

Therefore, in certain dispute situations the balance between these two aims may get tipped more in favor of protecting and defending the professionals than in protecting the public. An example can be used to illustrate this. In a dispute between a lawyer and his/her client or between a patient and his/her doctor, the Law Society of England and Wales or the General Medical Council will inevitably find itself plunged into a conflict of interest in (a) its wish to defend the interests of the client, while also (b) wishing to defend the interests, status and privileges of the professional. It is clearly a tough call for it do both.

Many professional bodies are involved in the development and monitoring of professional educational programs, and the updating of skills, and thus perform professional certification to indicate that a person possesses qualifications in the subject area. Sometimes membership of a professional body is synonymous with certification, though not always. Membership of a professional body, as a legal requirement, can in some professions form the primary formal basis for gaining entry to and setting up practice within the profession; "see licensure."

Many professional bodies also act as learned societies for the academic disciplines underlying their professions.

Legal functions

In countries where the law entitles defendants to a jury by their peers, the general public may not be considered sufficiently knowledgeable in a field of practice to act as a peer in some legal cases. For example, the Professional associations do not always concern themselves with licensure or the equivalent or government regulations. In the United States, journalists seek to avoid government involvement in their work or "official" definitions.


See also

*List of professional organizations
*Professional development
*Standards organizations

External links

* [ Directory of British professional Bodies]
* [ List of Professional bodies in Australia]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • designated professional body — (DPB) A professional body designated by the Treasury under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. Such bodies include the Law Society (England and Wales), the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, the Association of… …   Law dictionary

  • Designated Professional Body — DPB A professional body registered with the Financial Services Authority as having statutory responsibility for regulating its profession. The DPBs are the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, the Institute of Actuaries, the Institute… …   Accounting dictionary

  • Designated Professional Body — DPB A professional body registered with the Financial Services Authority as having statutory responsibility for regulating its profession. The DPBs are the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, the Institute of Actuaries, the Institute… …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • ASET (professional body) — Infobox Company company name = company company type = A registered charity foundation = 1982 location = Sheffield, England homepage = [] ASET is a professional body in the United Kingdom founded in 1982 …   Wikipedia

  • Outsourcing Professional Body of Knowledge — OPBOK (Outsourcing Professional Body of Knowledge®) свод знаний, необходимых для успешной работы в индустрии аутсорсинга, разработанный IAOP, международным сообществом экспертов в области сорсинга и аутсорсинга. Является сводом лучших практик и… …   Википедия

  • Recognized Professional Body — RPB See: Designated Professional Body …   Accounting dictionary

  • Recognised Professional Body — ( RPB) An organisation recognised by the Financial Services Authority. Empowered to authorise ( authorisation) firms to conduct investment business; e.g. The Law Society. Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein financial glossary …   Financial and business terms

  • Recognized Professional Body — RPB An organization registered with the Securities and Investment Board as having statutory recognition for regulating their professions. The RPBs are the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants, Institute of Actuaries, Institute of… …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • Body painting — Body painting, or sometimes bodypainting, is a form of body art, considered by some as the most ancient form of art. Unlike tattoo and other forms of body art, body painting is temporary, painted onto the human skin, and lasts for only several… …   Wikipedia

  • Professional certification — Professional certification, trade certification, or professional designation, often called simply certification or qualification, is a designation earned by a person to assure qualification to perform a job or task. Many certifications are used… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.