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.
- Why does ethics matter?
- What outcomes for whom?
- 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.