Past Projects & Events
For more information about past CSEP news and events, please check out the CSEP Blog.
NanoConnection To Society
Principal Investigator; Vivian Weil, Director The Center participated in a five-year project to develop the NanoEthicsBank, an electronically accessible database containing codes, policies, reports, and scholarly work relating to ethics and nanotechnology. The NanoEthicsBank is part of the larger Harvard-based database NanoConnection to Society which is an important resource for researchers, scholars and the general public on current and potential effects of nanotechnology on society. The NanoConnection to Society database is part of the Nanotechnology in Society Project, funded by the National Science Foundationand the National Nanotechnology Initiative. NSF Award # 0531146
Ethics in the Details
Principal Investigator: Michael Davis, Senior Fellow, CSEP Kathryn Riley, Chair, Humanities
This 3-year grant, funded by the National Science Foundation, looks at developing a new way of effectively integrating ethics into the graduate engineering classroom. Through a series of one-day workshops taught at IIT and Howard University, faculty and graduate-student teaching assistants are taught how to develop "micro-insertions" of ethics, or small ways to rewrite technical problems to include ethical issues. The grant team is accessing the effectiveness of this method in graduate courses and a nanotechnology research lab. In addition, the grant will support development of a Web-based "Ethics In-Basket" to disseminate ethics problems to engineering faculty worldwide. For more information please visit the IIT Magazine coverage of the "Ethics in the Details" grant published in January of 2009.
Ethics Research in a Nanotechnology Facility
Principal Investigator: Vivian Weil, Director
The objective of this project ws do do research on the ethical and social implications of nano research and development in the nanotechnology research facility at the University of Chicago. The project broght a philosophy of science predoctoral student into the UIC research facility who interacted with researchers using the facility and developed a questionaire for staff and users about the impacts and implications of their work. An article published by Julio Tuma, the embeded philosopher at the UIC facility was published in the December 2013 issue of Science and Engineering Ethics. NSF Award #9514780
Summer Engineering Research Experiences for Undergraduates
For over nine years, the Center has worked with IIT's Armour College of Engineering to develop a weekly colloquium on research ethics as part of the Research Experience for Undergraduate programs. In this course, students work in groups to research a topic in research ethics and present their findings to the class. Colloquium discussions revolve around ethics cases and relate back to the students' work in the lab. NSF Award #1157041, #0552896, #0852048
Research Experience for Teachers
Co-Principal Investigator: Vivian Weil, Director
In this three-year project, the Center provided ethics traing workshops for a "Research Experiences for Teachers" program at the Illinois Institute of Technology. The workshops helped introduce participants on how to recognize ethical issues in the courses they taught and how to integrate ethics into the educational modules they developed as part of the program. NSF Award # 0502174
Ethics Across the Curriculum
Principal Investigators: Vivian Weil, Director, Michael Davis, Senior Fellow, Robert Ladenson, Center Fellow
Through a series of grants from the National Science Foundation, CSEP developed a success approach to help integrate ethics into technical courses throughout the science and engineering disciplines. Over a period of eight years, the Center held a number of seven-day faculty workshops that helped participants develop specific materials to use in class and the skills and confidence to use them. The workshops included faculty from throughout the U.S. as well as international particpants, and the content of the workshops is available online in the Ethics Across the Curriculm website. NSF Award #9985813 and #9601905
Online Codes of Ethics Collection
Principal Investigator: Vivian Weil, Director
Begun in 1996, this project sought to make the Center's massive paper code of ethics collection online. The Center has continued to add new codes of ethics to the collection on a regular basis, until now it is the largest collection of its kind in the world. NSF Award #9514780
Development of a Code of Ethics for Software Engineers
Principle Investigators: Vivian Weil, Director, and Michael Davis, Senior Fellow
In 1995, CSEP received a grant from the National Science Foundation to become a participant observer in a project aimed at the development of a code of ethics for software engineers. As part of this project, CSEP faculty monitored followed the delibrations of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineering (IEEE) Computer Society and the Association for Computing Machinery as they formed a Joint Steering Committee for the Establishiment of Software Engineering as a Profession and set about developing a code of ethics. The project represented a rare opportunity to study a technical profession come into being. The final product of this project is the Software Engineering Archive which includes all of the emails from members of this project as well as drafts of the code of ethics and interviews with main participants in the project. NSF Award# 9523650 and #0117471
This summer,Dr. Vivian Weil and Kelly Laas helped run a weekly ethics meeting for the Engineering Research Experiences in Diabetes REU taught by Dr. Eric Brey. During the summer, students met weekly and participated in student-led discusions on various topics in research ethics.
This summer,Dr. Vivian Weil and Kelly Laas helped run a weekly ethics meeting for two Research Experience for Undergraduate programs, the Hybrid Electric and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles REU taught by Dr. Alireza Khaligh, and the Engineering Research Experiences in Diabetes REU taught by Dr. Eric Brey. Students met weekly to discuss major research ethics topics suc has student/advisor relationships, authorship & peer review, conflict of interest, and other topics relevant to the resarch the students were participating in during the summer session.
On October 30, 2010, nine teams participated in the third annual IPRO Ethics Bowl Competition. After two morning rounds, the two highest scoring teams, IPRO 305 and IPRO 353 went on to the final round, where they discussed case studies looking at international responsibility for deforestation in Kenya, and privacy issues and the social networking site Facebook. After a well-argued match, IPRO 305 won the final match. Congratulations to all the teams who participated!
In Fall 2010, a new course is being offered that brings together engineering, science, computer science, and philosophy of science students to engage in a joint research project where they will work to address ethical issues as they naturally arise in the research process. This course is being made available through a grant from the National Science Foundation. To read more, please see the description of the grant available through the National Science Foundation web site.
This summer,Dr. Vivian Weil and Kelly Laas helped run a weekly ethics meeting for two Research Experience for Undergraduate programs, the Hybrid Electric and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles REU taught by Dr. Alireza Khaligh, and the Engineering Research Experiences in Diabetes REU taught by Dr. Eric Brey. You can read an article about the Hybrid Electric Vehicles REU and its ethics component in the Fall 2010 edition of the IIT Magazine on page 7.
October 2009 Please visit the beta version of the new Ethics Education Library, a database of articles, case studies, syllabi, and best practices in teaching professional and research ethics. This database is part of a joint project with the Center for Ethics, Engineering and Society at the National Academy of Engineering and the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions at the Illinois Institute of Technology to develop a series of web resource for Principal Investigators (PIs) and university administrators looking to incorporate an ethics component in National Science Foundation grant proposals.
CSEP has been awarded a NSF Grant to develop a new graduate course for science, engineering and philosophy of science graduate students to engage in joint research and address ethical issues as they naturally arise in research. Principal Investigator Dr. Vivian Weil will work with colleagues from universities in the Chicago area to design a course to prepare students for joint research across disciplinary boundaries and to enable students to identify and fruitfully address ethical issues arising in the natural course of their research. For students in each area, the course provides fresh perspectives from the other two areas and practice in addressing ethical issues that they identify in the course of their research.
April 23, 2009
Dr. Vivian Weil and Dr. Michael Davis participated in the Spring 2009 College of Science and Letters Teaching Enrichment Workshop focusing on academic honesy and acting responsibility in academe. The workshop featured Professor. Donald L. McCabe of the Rutgers Business School and a panel of IIT faculty members, administrators and student representatives in a discussion about student motivations for cheating, discuss faculty and institution-wide responses to academic dishonesty, and suggestions on how to enhance campus principles of academic integrity.
March 5, 2009
Congratulations to all 32 teams who participated in the 15th Annual Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl Competition in Cincinnati! Taking place the day before the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics, the teams competed in a a series of three morning matches to see which eight would continue to the quarter-finals that evening. Audience members of the final match between Indiana University and Clemson University were struck by the clarity of each team's response to the question about their case, and by the cooperation between members of both teams in answering the judges' questions. Congratulations to Indiana University who won the 2009 competition, and thanks to all the team members, coaches, sponsors, judges and moderators who participated this year. If you are interested in participating in the Ethics Bowl, please visit the web site for more information.
January 21, 2009
The Center would like to announce the release of its first online publication, Code Making: How Software Engineering Became a Profession, by Dr. Michael Davis. During the period of 1993-2000, CSEP fellows and staff were participant observers in a joint project of the IEEE Computer Society (IEEE-CS) and the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) f to help organize software developers and engineers into a profession. One of the main goals of this project was to develop a universal code of ethics for software engineers. Dr. Davis was a participant observer throughout the drafting of the Software Engineering Code of Ethics and afterwards wrote a detailed account of how the code was developed by the ACM and IEEE-CS committee. “Code Making” gives insight in how the profession of software engineering was formed and wrote its own code of professional ethics, and also looks at this project as a case study to see how other professional societies can better go about drafting and revising their own codes of ethics. The entire book is available for free download under a Creative Commons license.
December 18, 2008
The Ethics Bowl was mentioned in a special end of the year issue of the U.S. World & News report, in an article entitled “50 Ways to Improve Your Life-Learn Philosophy.” Founded by IIT’s Dr. Robert Ladenson in 1993, the Ethics Bowl has grown to include over 93 colleges nationwide, and a number of professional organizations and high schools have started holding their own competitions. The Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl National Championship will be held on March 5, 2009 in Cincinnati, at the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics. Best of luck to all participating teams!
An article describing the process of developing IIT's Code of Ethics can be found in the Summer 2008 issue of the journal, New Directions for Higher Education by Michael Davis.
February 22, 2008
Dr. Vivian Weil, Director of CSEP, led a panel discussion, entitled “Is Nanoethics Anything in Particular?” at the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics Seventeenth Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas. CSEP fellows Robert Ladenson was also a panelist in the panel, “Engaging Ethics in American Archaeology, and Michael Davis in the discussion, “Ethics Education for Graduate Programs in Geographic Information Science and Technology.”
February 21, 2008
Thirty-two teams, representing different colleges and universities, participated in the IEB National Championship Competition, which took place in San Antonio, in conjunction with the Annual Meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics (APPE). The team from Clemson University (SC) emerged as the winner in a superb final match with the runner-up team from Wright State University (OH).
December 1, 2007
The IIT Ethics Bowl Team placed second in the Upper Midwest Region Ethics Bowl. Team members Elena Davis, Linda Goldstein, Tim Nuccio and Julia Rybakova will be continuing to the National Competition on February 21, 2008 in San Antonio, Texas. For more information, see the IIT Today announcement.
October 4, 2007
Michael Davis began the Western Michigan University's Center for the Study of Ethics in Society's fall lecture series with the talk, "Of All Professions Begging is the Best: Some Problems in the Study of Professions." For information on this talk and others in the series, see the article, "Fall Ethics Lecture Address Wide Range of Issues" that appeared in WMU News.
August 9, 2007
President Bush signed the America Creating Opportunties for Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education and Science (COMPETES) Act. This act requires institutions recieving awards from the National Scienc Foundation to provide training in the responsible conduct of research and research ethics to undergraduates, graduate and postdoctoral students. For more information, see the U.S. Office of Research Integrity's September 2007 newsletter.
Vivian Weil's presentation, "Public Engagement and Public Trust" presented on February 6, 2006, was included as further reading in the major report, EPA and Nanotechnology: Oversight for the 21st Century by J. Clarence Davies of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholar's Project on Emerging Technologies.
CSEP has made the full text of the Module Series in Applied Ethics available for interested students, scholars, and instructors. The series was produced by the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions in under a grant from the Exxon Education Foundation. This series is intended for use in a wide range of undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education programs in such areas as science and/or technology public policy, and professional ethics courses in engineering, business, and computer science.
May 1, 2007
Launch of the NanoEthicsBank: CSEP has recently launched the NanoEthicsBank, a resource for researchers, scholars, students, and the general public who are interested in the social and ethical implications of nanotechnology.
The CSEP web site was mentioned in an article entitled "Smart Stops on the Web" in the March 2007 issues of the Journal of Accountancy as a source for finding codes of ethics for various professions, learning how to write a code of ethics, and for sample business ethics cases. (p.25)
February 23, 2007
Director Vivian Weil moderated a panel discussion entitled "Is NanoEthics Anything in Particular?" at the annual meeting for the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics in San Antonio Texas at 10 a.m.
February 22, 2007
The IEB National Championship Competition took in place in Cincinnati, in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics (APPE). The team from the University of Miami (Coral Gables, FL) emerged as the winner in a friendly but intense competition of the top thirty two teams from eight regional ethics bowls that took place throughout the United States in the fall of 2006.
February 15, 2007
Director Vivian Weil has received an invitation from the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). As a previous member of the technical advisory group (TAG) appointed to inform PCAST in its review of the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) in 2005, she has been invited to continue service as an expert resource in preparation for the 2007 review of the NNI. The new nanotechnology technical advisory group being assembled is known as nTAG, and consists of experts representing a range of disciplines, such as bionanotechnology, drug delivery, biosensors, MEMS, sensing, chemistry, physics, business, commercial and government.
February 8, 2007
CSEP celebrated its 30th anniversary with members of the IIT community. John Rowe, Chairman of the IIT Board of Trustees; and Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Exelon spoke on his experiences as a participant in public controversy over energy and environmental policies. The lecture was followed by a short demonstration of Ethics Bowl, an intercollegiate tournament invented at CSEP by Robert Ladenson. Thanks to the many people who attended this event!
January 19, 2007
Robert Ladenson, Faculty Associate of CSEP and founder of the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl, was selected by the American Philosophical Society and the Philosophy Documentation Center as the winner of the APA/PDC 2006 prize for Excellence and Innovation in Philosophy Programs. The thirteenth annual Ethics Bowl national competition will be held at the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics in Cincinnati on Thursday February 22, 2007. Please see the Ethics Bowl homepage for more information.
December 2, 2006
IIT Ethics Bowl Team placed second in Midwest regional competition of the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl, and will be going to the national level competition in February of 2007. The IIT Ethics Bowl team members are: Vaibhav Agrawal, Waseem Ahmed, Robert Brozyna, and Elena Davis. The team sponsor is IIT Philosophy Professor Robert Ladenson For more information, see the article in the December 7th edition of IIT Today.
A 3-year National Science Foundation grant for $238,663 has been awarded to IIT with PI Michael Davis (CSEP/Humanities), and co-PIs Vivian Weil (CSEP/Humanities) and Kathryn Riley (Chair, Humanities). The grant will be administered by CSEP. "Ethics in the Details" will involve collaboration with engineering faculty and graduate students at IIT, UIC, and Howard. The grant will fund workshops that teach faculty and students to develop "micro-insertions"--small ways to add ethical issues to problems in the graduate engineering curricula. The grant team will also assess this method in graduate courses and a nanotechnology research lab. In addition, the grant will support development of a Web-based "Ethics In-Basket" to disseminate ethics problems to engineering faculty worldwide.
As part of the NSF funded project, NanoConnection to Society, CSEP released a pilot version of the NanoEthicsBank, an electronically accessible database containing codes, policies, reports, and scholarly work relating to ethics and nanotechnology. Please visit the test version of the NanoEthicsBank and give us your feedback.
CSEP Director Vivian Weil was interviewed in IIT Magazine's Spring 2006 issue cover story "A Matter of Scale" on the possible social, ethical, and legal impacts of nanotechnology research and development. The full article can be read by clicking here.
6 March 2006
Forty colleges and universities from across the United States participated in the Twelfth Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl that took place in Jacksonville Florida in conjunction with the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics annual meeting. The Ethics Bowl was started by Professor Robert Ladenson in 1997. Teams for the 2007 national competition will be selected through a series of regional competitions.
3 March 2006
CSEP's Codes of Ethics Online collection was mentioned in a Colorado Springs Gazette story about web sites that include information on business ethics.
23 January 2006
CSEP Director Vivian Weil was invited to be on the Nanoethics Group Advisory Board, a network of notable experts who seek to study the social and ethical implications of nanotechnology.
Winter 2005-Summer 2006
CSEP begins building the NanoEthicsBank, an electronically accessible database containing codes, policies, reports, and scholarly work relating to ethics and nanotechnology. The NanoEthicsBank is part of the larger Harvard-based database NanoConnection to Society which, when completed, will be an important resource for researchers, scholars and the general public on current and potential effects of nanotechnology on society. The NanoConnection to Society database is part of the Nanotechnology in Society Project, funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Nanotechnology Initiative.
CSEP announced the launch of a new portion of our web site dedicated to the examination of ethical issues in emerging technologies. The section includes a bibliography on ethics in biomedical engineering, specifically regarding the development of a neural visual prosthesis. It also includes a section on print and online resources that examine ethical issues in nanotechnology.
IIT hosted colleagues in institutions across the country, and even internationally, for the Ethics Across Curriculum summer workshops, which were generously funded by the National Science Foundation.
CSEP's librarian, Elizabeth, received a grant from the Chicago Library System to hold two workshops for the newly formed Chicago Area Solo Librarians(CASL) group. Please visit our site!