When people out of altruistic motives openly speak up against illegal, unfair or otherwise ethically doubtful practices that they have heard of or experienced while doing their duties in their jobs or public offices, "whistleblowers".
Whistleblowers, in general, stir up public attention to legally or ethically dubious practices of the powerful, practices that might inflict harm on the community of citizens or the general public.
Two cases that have particularly had IALANA's attention are the Nikitin case and the Vanunu case.The German affiliate of IALANA, together with the Association of German Scientists and the International Network of Engineers and Scientists to Promote and Protect Ethical Engagement have even awarded the first ever Whistleblowing-Award to Alexander Nikitin. The Award is meant as an expression of our high regard for a person who:
acts without any thought of personal interests, but solely out of the benefit of the public;
shows a great degree of civilian courage by critically giving her or his opinion on dangerous events or developments, or
refuses to cooperate on activities because of intolerable dangers or risks out of ethical reservations or other conscientious reasons,
risks serious disadvantages and detriments for his or her personal or professional career, or even jeopardizing personal freedom and life.