RCR Event: Sparks Forum

How to Engineer Like an Ethicist, and Do Ethics Like an Engineer: A Conversation

April 23, 11:00-12:00EDT

Registration: https://bit.ly/3tcv6H2 

This session satisfies one hour of the in-person RCR compliance training requirement for trainees funded by applicable NSF or NIH projects. Attendees should register through the link above.  IMPORTANT: Be sure to enter both your first and last name and your email address in BlueJeans when you sign into the session.

Description: To become an engineer is not only to become proficient in mathematics or in theory. It is to become a professional, which involves a relationship of trust with clients, end users, and the wider public. It involves matters of moral responsibility. But what is the relationship between the technical aspects of engineering – design decisions – and the matters of responsibility to the public – ethical decisions? In this panel, an engineer and a philosopher discuss how design and ethics are intertwined in the working lives of engineers and what this implies for the engineering education.

Wade Robison is the Ezra A. Hale Professor in Applied Ethics at the Rochester Institute of Technology. His research focuses on David Hume and on applied ethics. His book, Decisions in Doubt, about environmental ethics, won the Nelson A. Rockefeller Prize in Social Science and Public Policy. His latest book is Ethics Within Engineering. He teaches in the Grand Challenges program in the College of Engineering as well as in philosophy.  

Katherine Fu is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. Her work has focused on studying the engineering design process through cognitive studies and extending those findings to the development of methods and tools to facilitate more effective and inspired design and innovation. 

Robert Kirkman (moderator) is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies for Advising in the School of Public Policy. His research focuses on practical ethics, including the phenomenology of ethical action, the teaching and learning of ethics, engineering ethics, and environmental ethics. 


For more information about the RCR Workshop Series, including additional dates/sessions offered, refer to RCR Workshops and Events and Workshop FAQs.



Event Details


  • Friday, April 23, 2021
    11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Location: Online Video Meeting

For More Information Contact

Judy Willis

RCR Program Administrator