Code of ethics Opera Ballet Vlaanderen


A code of ethics is a framework that indicates how an employee acts with integrity within his/her professional environment. The code constitutes a guideline for all employees. Clear rules promote clarity and reduce ambiguity. Opera Ballet Vlaanderen vzw (hereafter referred to as "OBV") expects that all employees will act with integrity in their professional environment. Directors, executives and managers all have a role-model function in this regard.

Both the Corporate Governance Decree of the Government of Flanders and the Management Contract oblige OBV to draw up a code of ethics for its personnel.

This code of ethics has a broad application: both personnel members in a permanent or temporary employment relationship and independent collaborators fall within its scope.

Part of the code of ethics is the code of conduct, whose purpose is to create an optimal working environment for all personnel members and external collaborators of OBV.


— Personnel members: employees who are bound by an employment contract with OBV (unlimited term, limited term, seasonal contracts, etc.)

— Third parties or externals: persons who are directly bound to OBV by a collaboration agreement (as self-employed or freelance) or indirectly via an organisation, business or company that has concluded a collaboration agreement with OBV on this.

— Persons who work on a temporary employment basis for OBV (e.g. ushers) also fall under this code of ethics.

This document will use the term "employee(s)" to cover personnel members, third parties or externals, and persons who work for OBV on a temporary employment basis.


This code of ethics is based on the core values of OBV. It is expected of all personnel members that they will work in accordance with common values and standards. This leads to an upright organisation where employees treat not only one another, but also visitors, suppliers and third parties correctly, equally and with a concern for quality.

An upright employee is honest, sincere and incorruptible. Such an employee possesses inherent reliability, says what he/she is doing, and does not harbour any hidden agendas.


Inspiring: We empower one another and others to be innovative and creative. We inspire one another and are proud that we can offer our unique contribution to each other and to OBV so as to enable Opera and Dance to excel. Our enthusiasm turns OBV into an exciting and powerful story.

Playing together: Our daily goal is to connect with one another and with our environment. We feel solidarity and concern for one another, and seek our strength in diversity and a multiplicity of voices. We find the path to sustained collaboration in active and transparent listening and communicating. We take tradition and innovation by the hand in order to generously offer Opera and Dance, and create enthusiasm for art and artistic experience. We bring the world outside of opera in, while at the same time sallying forth into the world.

Pioneering: Our choice is to explore new paths. We pioneer by following our own artistic impulses and, as an organisation, we want to become stronger and better. We constantly strive for growth, development and innovation. We are critical and explore the limits of our artistic domains. We dare to differ from the established houses with regard to both programming and working method. We embrace challenges and make time for experimentation.

OBV wants to make these values flourish within the organisation. They express who we are and what we want for the future of OBV.


Employees act in the interest of the organisation. They deal carefully, ethically and responsibly with the organisation's people and resources.

Employees endorse and promote the organisation's objectives as they are expressed in the mission and vision and in the Management Contract, in the interest of and with a view to the sound continuity of the organisation.

Employees refrain from statements and actions that might harm or compromise the position or the reputation of the organisation, the Board of Directors or any of its members.

Employees know and respect the legal framework and the articles of association of the organisation and support compliance with them.


Employees see their mission and function always as a common mission for everyone together. To fulfil this mission, everyone strives for a smooth collaboration wherein the interest of the organisation is central. Together the employees want to create and maintain a professional working environment and atmosphere that are also enjoyable. There is respect for one another within the organisation. There is no place for discrimination.

Employees are polite and friendly and do their best to help their colleagues.

They also work together loyally, openly and constructively with management. As soon as a decision has been taken, employees rally around it and implement it quickly and efficiently.


In the collaboration with colleagues, one works in an open dialogue and a constructive atmosphere so as to achieve results. Any disagreements are discussed with one another. Managers and/or the internal or external confidential advisors can be called in as necessary.

Managers are approachable and loyal to the employees of the organisation. They put the right people in the right places so that everyone's abilities are optimally utilised. One will communicate openly and clearly about what is expected from employees. The managers give the employees the resources that are necessary in order to achieve the objectives and ensure that they can rely on an honest evaluation.


Information relating to the organisation that employees know (or should reasonably presume) is confidential shall be treated as such and used solely in the exercise of their function.

Teleworking and modern IT possibilities often obscure the limits between work and private life. The employees are aware of this and shall protect confidential business information.


A flexible but efficient internal operation and a professional appearance are only possible if each employee adopts correctness as a guideline in the execution of his/her job. This entails honesty and respect in dealing with others.

An employee does not do or say anything that someone else could regard as a violation of his/her dignity. Any form of transgressive behaviour such as bullying, aggression, racism, discrimination and unwanted sexual behaviour, whether by means of words or by actual actions or behaviours, is prohibited. In a positive working environment people take account of one another's limits. What is acceptable for one person may not always be so for another. Every employee shall have understanding for this.

The organisation wants to play an exemplary role in the area of equal opportunities. No distinction is made between people on the basis of individual differences.

If an employee is affected by a form of discrimination or transgressive behaviour, in the first instance this matter is raised with the person involved. Then the manager will be informed. The manager will inform the HR Manager, who in turn will involve the board if necessary. The confidential advisors can be contacted at any time.


Employees shall watch over the careful (and thus also economical) management of the resources that the organisation has at its disposal for fulfilling its objectives.

Employees shall not only deal with these resources prudently, but also be prepared to answer for their use. All of the organisation's resources are always used with a view to efficiency and effectiveness.

During work, in whatever form, an employee devotes himself/herself entirely to his/her job. There shall be no unauthorised use of the organisation's equipment or material for private purposes.


The employees shall report any integrity violations and conflicts of interest at the earliest possible stage so as to avoid any undesired conflict of interest. They guarantee that they will deal transparently and carefully with any conflicts of interest.

The legal coordinator is the first contact point in such situations. He/she will handle all reports with discretion and confidentiality.

Professional integrity entails that employees shall not accept any gifts or advantages (such as meals, accommodations, etc.) from suppliers, visitors or other external relations, as this could influence the relationship. If an employee nevertheless has received such a gift or advantage, in whatever form, the employee shall inform his/her manager thereof. The purpose of this rule is to prevent any kind of undue influence or conflict of interest and to protect employees against wrongful influence by third parties/externals.


Personnel members shall always inform both their manager and the HR Manager if they, in addition to their employment contract at OBV, take up any other position, whether in the form of secondary self-employment or in an employment relationship. Should there be any potential conflict, OBV may refuse to allow the two positions to be combined.

Members of the board and the management shall report mandates and management positions in other organisations so that the organisation is informed of potential conflicts of interest. In such cases the concerned member of the board or management cannot be involved in certain decisions so as to avoid any suspicion of conflict of interest.


Employees who note abuses that are in violation of this code or others always have the possibility of reporting it. In the first instance these employees can contact the legal coordinator who will deal with these reports with full discretion and in complete confidentiality. The confidential advisors within OBV can also be consulted at any time.


This code of ethics and the code of conduct (and any updates) will be published as follows:

— Internally: on the OBV intranet

— Externally: on the website

The Works Council as well as the Workplace Prevention and Protection Committee have taken knowledge of this document and its contents.


Contact person

If you have any questions or comments about this code of ethics, please contact the OBV legal coordinator. His/her contact details can be found on the intranet and on the OBV insite.

Document owner
Legal coordinator

Update 15/01/2024

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