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Engineering in search of ethics

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1 Author(s)
Maxey, M.N. ; Texas Univ., Austin, TX, USA

The debate concerning engineering ethics is reviewed. One party to the debate insists that principles are rooted within private morality and virtue ethics, which instill wisdom accumulated over the past 2000 years. It maintains that the social fabric is woven together and preserved by private decency, honesty, personal responsibility, honor, and the repudiation of cruelty and selfishness. A second school of thought has commenced the search for engineering ethics by taking its point of departure from the sorry state of planet Earth. Engineering professionals have become targets of blame for producing hazardous technologies presumed to be highly polluting and environmentally dangerous, not to mention electronic devices berated as promoters of potential violations of civil liberties. The two points of view are discussed in an historical context.<>

Published in:

Circuits and Devices Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:9 ,  Issue: 1 )