1 month, 28 days ago

With Strings Attached

@rachelcoldicutt notes that “Google Docs new grammar suggestion tool doesn’t like the word ‘funding’ and prefers ‘investment’ “.Many business people have an accounting mindset, in which all expenditure must be justified in terms of benefit to the organ…

2 months, 4 days ago

The Road Less Travelled

Are algorithms trustworthy, asks @NizanGP.”Many of us routinely – and even blindly – rely on the advice of algorithms in all aspects of our lives, from choosing the fastest route to the airport to deciding how to invest our retirement savings. But shou…

2 months, 22 days ago

Five Elements of Responsibility by Design

I have been developing an approach to #TechnologyEthics, which I call #ResponsibilityByDesign. It is based on the five elements of #VPECT. Let me start with a high-level summary before diving into some of the detail.


Values

  • Why does ethics matter?
  • What outcomes for whom?

Policies

  • Principles and practices of technology ethics
  • Formal codes of practice, etc. Regulation.

Event-Driven (Activity Viewpoint)

  • Effective and appropriate action at different points: planning; risk assessment; design; verification, validation and test; deployment; operation; incident management; retirement. (Also known as the Process Viewpoint). 

Content (Knowledge Viewpoint)

  • What matters from an ethical point of view? What issues do we need to pay attention to?
  • Where is the body of knowledge and evidence that we can reference?

Trust (Responsibility Viewpoint)

  • Transparency and governance
  • Responsibility, Authority, Expertise, Work (RAEW)

Concerning technology ethics, there is a lot of recent published material on each of these elements separately, but I have not yet found much work that puts them together in a satisfactory way. Many working groups concentrate on a single element – for example, principles or transparency. And even when experts link multiple elements, the logical connections aren’t always spelled out.

At the time of writing this post (May 2019), I haven’t yet fully worked out how to join these elements either, and I shall welcome constructive feedback from readers and pointers to good work elsewhere. I am also keen to find opportunities to trial these ideas on real projects.

Related Posts

Responsibility by Design (June 2018) What is Responsibility by Design (October 2018) Why Responsibility by Design Now? (October 2018)

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