Ethics for Everyone: Democratizing Ethics with Discrimination, Inequality, Injustice, and Technology in Mind
This seminar-practicum will invite students to “roll up our sleeves” and deliver concrete recommendations for making ethical decision-making accessible to ordinary citizens rather than just determined by corporate giants, law makers, or even academic experts. We will explore practical approaches to the following questions: How can we make ethical decision-making accessible to ordinary citizens in a complex world of technology, biology and even space exploration? How can we incentivize citizens to care about integrating ethics into their decision-making? How do we each have ethical power in society even where economic and technological control lie with tech giants and lodged in the brains of experts? What, if anything, is different about our sense of moral responsibility in society today (and how has technology contributed to shifting views)? How can we develop an ethics baromet—soliciting the views, and facilitating the influence of, ordinary citizens on key ethical questions (e.g., gene editing) outside of normal channels like voting and individual engagement with social media?
The highly interactive IntroSem will consider a number of cutting-edge topics from Covid-19 to racial injustice. Students can expect writing very short papers and teamwork along the way in lieu of final paper or exam.