Code of ethics



B:SM, a Barcelona City Council public company, has been working since its creation to harmonise the features which characterise public-integrity and good-governance models and does its utmost day after day to strengthen these, only too aware of the responsibility it takes on at the service of the community.  

The drafting and approval of the Code of Ethics came from the wish to establish an ethical infrastructure covering everything from the basic legal and institutional instruments at the community’s disposal to a whole series of features making up our institution’s system of integrity: leadership and ethical organisational culture, transparency and accountability and mechanisms for detecting and responding to improper conduct, among other things. In this regard, the B:SM Code of Ethics is becoming a benchmark guide for the conduct expected of professionals in the exercise of their duties and relations with stakeholders and acts as the keystone in the system for ensuring integrity.   

We need to be aware, however, that the drafting of the Code of Ethics is no guarantee in itself that the desired conduct will automatically occur. A whole series of ongoing internal and external information, training and awareness-raising initiatives need to be deployed. 

Hence, among other examples, the creation of the Code of Ethics Committee, as a body for supervising and monitoring its implementation and compliance with the code as well as proposing updates, to ensure the Code of Ethics is aligned with any new needs and requirements that may arise given the dynamics of the institution and the social and economic context. 

The B:SM Code of Ethics aims to play more than a merely declarative role, to become a real and direct application tool, and in this regard, besides establishing an automatic opt-in system, it envisages a system for monitoring and taking action, where necessary, in response to any breaches. 

The B:SM Code of Ethics takes as its benchmark the Spanish Constitution, the Statute of Autonomy of Catalonia and the rest of the State’s legal framework; the United Nations Global Pact; the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the Guidelines of the OECD; the Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), Recommendation No. R (2000)10 on Codes of Conduct for Public Officials adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the European Council of May 2011; the United Nations Convention against Corruption of October 2003; Act 19/2013, of 9 December, on Transparency, Access to Public Information and Good Governance, and the Human Factor Foundation’s Manifesto of 30 April 2013. 


1. Subject matter and scope of application

The Code of Ethics outlines the identity of Barcelona de Serveis Municipals, SA, and therefore the company’s essential features, values and ethical position. 

It represents a commitment undertaken by B:SM in the orientation of the business activity and social intervention that the entire organisation is involved in. The Code of Ethics is live and is intended to evolve in parallel to the organisation and its environment, to be revised and updated whenever necessary. 

The aim behind the B:SM Code of Ethics is to have a set of clear principles and rules on how we relate to each other and our stakeholders, and to serve as a guide for conduct so that the people in our organisation act in accordance with B:SM’s values. 

All the organisations professionals and collaborators, irrespective of their hierarchical level and the position they occupy, are under an obligation to know, abide by and adapt their actions to the guidelines established in this code and more specifically:

  • The individuals exercising the highest levels of responsibility in the company, who have to familiarise themselves with the Code of Ethics when they propose and implement projects, in carrying out operations linked to activities and services, in addition to doing this in the actions and investments necessary for increasing the company's value in the long term. 

  • The managerial team and senior executives, in the practical application of the Code of Ethics’ values and principles, promoting knowledge, consultations and monitoring. Among other functions any guideline must identify risk areas and weak points in terms of integrity, and establish preventive, control and detection measures for preventing or minimising their consequences. 

  • All B:SM professionals and collaborators, who have to align their actions and behaviour with the principles, goals and commitments set out in this Code. 


6. Functions of the Code of Ethics Committee

  • Fostering the dissemination and knowledge of and compliance with the Code of Ethics. 

  • Interpreting the rules stipulated by the Code of Ethics and overseeing their implementation. 

  • Establishing and managing the queries and suggestions channel through the email address: 

  • Receiving queries and suggestions on the Code of Ethics and replying to those concerned. 

  • Periodically revising the Code of Ethics and proposing any relevant amendments for the purposes of adapting its requirements to the needs of the organisation and its relationship with the environment and stakeholders, considering the suggestions and proposals raised by B:SM professionals. Any revision or updating of the Code of Ethics will require the approval of the B:SM' Board of Directors. 

  • Proposing recommendations to the people to whom the Code of Ethics applies and any stakeholders on compliance with and implementation of the Code of Ethics. 

  • Preparing an annual activity report for following up the Code of Ethics.

Codi Ètic

3. B:SM’s action principles

These are the principles that guide our behaviour and on which the basic conduct of every professional should be modelled.

3.1 Commitment to human rights and people

B:SM is committed to respecting and safeguarding the human rights and public freedoms recognised in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the main international agreements, ensuring that the principles established there are present in its policies. The principal goal of this commitment is respect for human dignity. 

The B:SM’s Steering Committee subscribes to the Ten Commitments of the Human Factor Manifesto of 30 April 2013 and undertakes to disseminate them and integrate them into its policies. 

3.2 Non-discrimination and equal opportunities

There is a principle of equal opportunities that prevents any form of discrimination on the grounds of birth, race, sex, religion, opinion or any other personal or social condition or circumstance. Relations between people must be mutually respectful, with equal treatment and opportunities. B:SM therefore prohibits any manifestation of violence, abuse of authority and any type of harassment (physical, psychological or moral), as well as any other form of conduct that may create an intimidating, offensive or hostile work environment for individuals, and has a specific procedure for acting in those cases. 



We work with expert knowledge, actively listening and developing talent to create the best experiences for our city residents/clients.



We are accountable for consistency, responsibility and transparency.



We are passionately involved with citizens / clients, colleagues and the environment. 



We anticipate and innovate to improve, every day, everything we do.



We base our relationships on confidence, collaboration and respect.


2. B:SM's mission, vision and values

The definition of the purpose, vision and values as guiding and strategic features is carried out on the bases of criteria established by Barcelona City Council undertaking its organisational capacity with the aim of giving value to municipal policies and services the management and implementation of which B:SM is tasked with. 


3.3 Los comportamientos deseados

De nuestros valores y principios éticos se derivan una serie de comportamientos deseados.

Véase el anexo I del Código Ético

Codi Ètic

3.3 Collaboration and dedication

B:SM promotes a cooperation and teamwork environment to make better use of all its capacities and resources. Every professional must act in a spirit of collaboration, providing the other organisational units and individuals that make up the company with the knowledge or resources that help to ensure the company’s goals and interests are achieved. 


All B:SM professionals must work efficiently during the working day, account for the time and resources that the company puts at their disposal and attempt to bring maximum value to every process they take part in. 

B:SM respects the personal lives of its professionals and understands the balance between personal and working life. That is why it fosters measures and implements initiatives that help to ensure the comprehensive development of its professionals

3.4 Responsible and cooperative relations with the environment

We at B:SM understand Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as a company commitment. We voluntarily implement management and operational policies which incorporate community perspectives and the needs and expectations of stakeholders. We engage in social action through promotion and participation in initiatives for the benefit of society and in collaboration with non-profit organisations. 

3.5 Protecting health

The Commitment Charter, as the basis for prevention in the entire company, defines and unifies preventive policies by establishing a high level of safety in work processes and instructions. It provides a safe and healthy environment, complying with current regulations in force, while working to go above and beyond the legislative framework. B:SM likewise ensures its suppliers, contractors and collaborator companies in general comply with the current preventive measures for occupational risks. 

B:SM provides its professionals with the resources and training needed to enable them to carry out their duties in safety and in a healthy environment. For their part, all its professionals are under a duty to know and comply with workplace health and safety rules and to ensure their own and others’ safety through compliance with any preventive measures adopted.

3.6 Protecting the environment

B:SM is committed not just to carrying out its activities in a way that minimises any negative environmental impact but also to making efficient use of energy in its facilities and activities for the purposes of preserving natural resources, reducing atmospheric emissions and helping to mitigate the effects of climate change.

We at B:SM are only too aware of the how important it is to value the environment, which is why we feel responsible for the environmental impact of our activities and attempt to maintain an overall balance, over and above our legal obligations. As a responsible and committed company, we work to incorporate best management practices and make the proper use of available resources. Every activity is carried out in accordance with B:SM’s environmental policy, which incorporates strategic areas, values and commitments.   

  • Reducing water and energy consumption and costs, making rational uses of resources and establishing energy-saving and efficiency initiatives. Correctly managing waste to keep it to a minimum, reuse and recycling. 

  • Acquiring environmentally friendly products and services that offer the requisite quality and service and which also have a smaller impact and greater social benefit. 

  • Seeking out the best techniques available and opting for the introduction of clean energies, thereby committing ourselves to the fight against climate change and to adapting the city to this global phenomenon. 

  • Working in anticipation of environmental risks and impacts, while promoting the principle of prevention. Opting for environmental management systems such as ISO 14001. 

  • Fostering this culture by involving the company and suppliers and users of its services and facilities, through communication, awareness raising and transparency. 

3.7 Anti-corruption and conflict of interests

We apply the principles of good governance and reject any practice of corruption, understood as an abuse of office or position for private benefit, be it economic, social, political or any other type, whether or not its effects are immediate or future, to one’s own or a third party’s benefit 

B:SM rejects bribes and prohibits its professionals from providing third parties with or receiving from third parties undue services, favours or payments of any kind or gifts or hospitality beyond the usual, social or courtesy uses or which, owing to their value or features or circumstances, may reasonably alter or determine the development of the commercial, administrative or professional relations that the Company’s various units are involved in. In any case, courtesy gifts or hospitality that have an ordinary market price above 50 euros must be returned and sufficient evidence of that provided.    

B:SM also rejects any practices that its members may carry out for the benefit of our competitors or for their own personal benefit.  

Conflicts of interest arise whenever a circumstance or situation occurs where the individual or family interests of persons with links to members of the Board of Directors, managers, executive and other professionals diverge from the company’s interests.

Every action or decision that a BSM individual takes part in must be aimed at maintaining the company’s continuity and irreproachable reputation.

Significant interest in the companies that B:SM maintains commercial relations with must be avoided. A significant interest is considered to exist when a BSM professional or a family member of that professional up to fourth degree kinship or second degree of affinity has a share in the company's capital or can obtain profit, be it financial or in kind. Where such a circumstance occurs, the professional must communicate this immediately to their superior who will arrange and guarantee their absence or non-participation in the related decision-making and management processes.


3.8 Legislative compliance

All B:SM’s professionals are under an obligation to know and comply with the legislation and rules that apply to their duties and maintain an attitude that cannot negatively affect the company. In addition, every professional in charge of a team must assume the additional responsibility of ensuring that their staff know and comply with the Code of Ethics and set an example through their behaviour.

B:SM will promote periodic communication and training initiatives related to the Code of Ethics and internal implementing rules. 

3.9 Integrity

Professionals shall adapt their conduct to the criteria of professionalism and integrity. 

  • Professionalism is diligent, responsible and efficient action aimed at excellence, quality and innovation. 

  • Integrity is acting loyally, honestly and in good faith, objectively and in accordance with the interests of the company, the City Council and society in general. 

  • Self-control in actions and decision-taking, so that any action that is adopted takes four basic premises into account: that it is an ethically acceptable action; that it is legally valid; that it is desirable for society and the company and, finally, that the professional is prepared to assume responsibility for it. 

3.10 Confidentiality and right to privacy

B:SM respects the right to privacy of its professionals in all its manifestations and especially with regard to personal, medical and financial data.  

In the case of personal data, whether from its professionals or its clients, B:SM guarantees data protection through the periodic performance of audits and the adoption of appropriate measures and, in accordance with the current legislation in force, to ensure their maximum security. 

Workers undertake to make responsible use of the communication media, computer systems and, in general, any other medium that the company makes available to them, in accordance with the policies and criteria established to this end. 

3.11 Resources and means for performing professional activities

B:SM undertakes to put at the disposal of its professionals the necessary and appropriate resources and means for performing their professional activity. Professionals undertake to use them responsibly. 

B:SM is the owner of the property and of the use and exploitation rights of the IT programs and systems, equipment, manuals, videos, projects, studies, reports and other works and rights created, developed, perfected or used by its professionals, within the framework of their work activity or based at the company’s IT facilities.  

Professionals shall respect the principle of confidentiality regarding the features of the rights, licences, programs, systems and technological knowledge, in general, the property or exploitation or use rights that fall to B:SM.  


3.12 Responsible relations with third parties


8. Term of validity

The B:SM’s Steering Committee approved this Code of Ethics at its meeting of 25 November 2014. The Code of Ethics came into force on 1 December 2014. It was last updated on 28 March 2019.