Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research Workshop

 CEES is also organizing a symposium about the workshop for the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics in March 2009.

Click on the speaker's name to access more information about his or her presentation.

AUGUST 25
 
8:00am Continental Breakfast
 
8:30am Welcome
Dr. John Ahearne, Chair, NAE CEES Advisory Group
Dr. Francisco Ayala, Member, OBAS Committee, COSEPUP
 
8:45am Statement of Meeting Goals
Dr. Richard Bissell, Executive Director, Policy and Global Affairs, National Research Council (NRC)
Dr. Rachelle Hollander, Director, CEES, NAE
 
9:00am Meeting Logistics
 
9:10am Introductions of Meeting Attendees
 
10:00am Session I: Needs and Issues for Ethics Education in Scientific & Engineering Research
Investigators and students exist in complex research and learning environments that include academic and other organizations such as professional societies, commercial research laboratories, government funding agencies, and peer-reviewed journals. What do these individuals and groups identify as the main impediments to developing effective responsible research programs? Are there conflicting ideas about what these impediments are and what to do about them?

Moderator: Francisco Ayala
Speakers: Joseph Helble, Deborah Johnson, Michael Mumford, Wendy Williams
Respondents: Paul Citron, Hugh Gusterson, Susan Silbey

Short Break

General Discussion
 
12:00pm Lunch and Role-Play Exercise “Getting Results”
Facilitator: Stephanie Bird
 
1:30pm Session II: Pedagogical Methods and Materials
There is quite a variety of both methods and materials in effect. More than a few consortia provide on-line tutorials; conferences are common. What kinds of contents and range of techniques are in use? What are their strengths and their limitations? Whom do they reach, and with what results? What information do we have that enables us to judge their merits? What’s missing?

Moderator: John Ahearne
Speakers: Julia Frugoli, Kelly Laas, Caroline Whitbeck, Sara Wilson
Respondents: Jason Borenstein, J. Britt Holbrook, Simil Raghavan

General Discussion
 
3:30pm Break
 
3:45pm Session III: Outreach and Assessment
Are relevant and important materials and techniques reaching the appropriate audiences? Who are the appropriate audiences, and are there useful feedback loops from them to the developers of materials, techniques, and guidance? Are the audiences able to adapt or adopt these resources? What efforts might improve access, use, and feedback and improvement? What kinds of assessment have been developed, make sense, or should be encouraged for the future? What have we learned and what do we need to learn?

Moderator: Felice Levine
Speakers: Melissa Anderson, Daniel Denecke, Brian Schrag, Joseph Whittaker
Respondents: Carl Lineberger,Charles Huff

Short Break

General Discussion
 
5:15pm Review of Sessions I, II and III
What can we conclude about how to develop and implement programs, how to export them, and how to assess their effectiveness? What can we conclude about development and use of effective methods and materials? What kinds of research, resource development and dissemination and assessment activities do we need in order to respond more effectively in the future?

Moderator: Mark Frankel
 
6:15pm Break for dinner
 
7pm Working Dinner at the Marian Koshland Science Museum

Speaker: Richard Bissell, On Being a Scientist

Informal conversation and continuation of discussion as needed or desired. The workshop planning group will meet at dinner to discuss meeting’s progress and assign follow-up duties.
 

AUGUST 26

 
8:00am Continental Breakfast
 
8:30 Next Steps
This session will draft an initial version of the meeting summary, based on the previous day’s discussion and attendees’ reflections about it. The workshop summary will identify currently promising materials and practices and provide examples of successful approaches and outcomes, including those that have created bridges between research investigators and scholars and researchers with expertise in relevant domains of science and engineering ethics. It will identify gaps in accessible and useful resources and in the knowledge base, and suggest future research, educational innovations, and outreach and dissemination activities.

Moderator: Rachelle Hollander
 
12:00pm Lunch and Follow-On Assignments
 
2:00pm Meeting Adjourns
 

 

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Melissa Anderson
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presentation Summary

The Contrary Research Environment: What is RCR Instruction Up Against? 

This presentation provides empirical evidence of the relative power of RCR instruction (formal and informal) and characteristics of the research environment to affect scientists'research behavior. It then advocates a more collaborative role for scientists and RCR educators, with behavioral change as its goal.

RCR instruction, in all its forms, is arguably the best hope for promoting research integrity. The catch, however, is that scientists' decisions and behavior are strongly influenced by their immediate research environments. For example, most scientists see their fields as highly competitive, and they tend to attribute bad behavior to competitive pressures. They have a sense of traditional scientific norms, but they see their colleagues violating those norms on a regular basis. Many scientists ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Paul Citron
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

“Ethics: term with enormous scope, breadth, and ambiguity”

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Daniel Denecke
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presentation Summary

The Role of the Graduate School in Promoting and Enhancing Research Ethics and Scholarly Integrity Programs

Over the past decade through dozens of projects (many supported by external funding from the Office of Research Integrity, the National Science Foundation, and ORI- and NSF-sponsored Council of Graduate Schools projects) researchers, educators, and senior administrators have combined forces to create important resources and models for addressing the educational needs of graduate students in the ethical and responsible conduct of research. A national dialogue about these resources and models is beginning to take shape among senior leaders with administrative oversight over graduate education. That dialogue reflects their greater familiarity with: the range of curricular resources; their respective strengths, weaknesses, and costs; and some possible ways in which these could be best adapted ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Julia Frugoli
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

"Pedagogical Materials & Methods: class room experience versus one time workshop”

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Joseph Helble
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

“Ethics Education for Ph.D. Graduate Students in Engineering: Issues and Approach”

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Charles Huff
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presentation Overview

Good Computing: A model of virtuous performance in the profession of computing

  • The puzzle: What is required to be ethical?
  • An inadequate approach: Decision Centered Models
  • Moral integrity in the field: Moral exemplars in computing
  • The PRIMES model
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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Kelly Laas
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Summary of Paper

Building Online SEE Resources: What works, where can improvements be made?

When looking at designing online resources for science and engineering ethics (SEE), developers should consider to what extent their web sites can fulfill the often-cited five goals set by the 1980 Hastings Center Working Group for teaching ethics in higher education. Online readings, case studies, discussion forums, and tutorials should help individuals in: 1) stimulating the moral imagination, 2) recognizing ethical issues, 3) developing analytical skills, 4) eliciting a sense of moral obligation and personal responsibility, and 5) tolerating and resisting disagreement and ambiguity.1 As we look to develop the next generation of SEE online resources, we must consider how new web design methods and technologies can be used to meet these goals.

Current SEE online resources have already met these goals in many ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Michael D. Mumford
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Excerpt from Presentation Paper

Current Issues and Directions in Ethics Instruction for Scientists and Engineers
by Michael D. Mumford and Alison L. Antes of University of Oklahoma

Several key premises regarding the nature of ethical research practices on the part of scientists and engineers serve as the basis of this model. First, ethical research practices arise from decisions about how to respond to complex, ill-defined work problems. Second, tradeoffs exist between various decisions, and the issues underlying these decisions are seldom black-and-white. Third, making a decision involves social implications and depends on predicting likely outcomes for oneself, others, and the work being conducted. Thus, when presented with an ambiguous, high-stakes problem, scientists and engineers arrive at a decision by engaging in “sensemaking” – a form of complex cognition concerning how one ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Susan S. Silbey
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Summary Excerpt

Rotten Apples or a Rotting Barrel

Crises of corporate and professional responsibility have been endemic to American society, at least since the last quarter of the nineteenth century. With each chapter of professional misconduct -- from the robber barons and the Teapot Dome scandals, from the progressive era through the Watergate, Iran Contra, and financial mismanagements of the last quarter of the twentieth century -- the response has been the same: calls for education in ethical citizenship, and specifically training in ethics as part of professional education. The cycle has been so often repeated that one can be surprised only by the paucity of models for providing that education.

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Caroline Whitbeck
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presentation Excerpt

The Three Needs in RCR Education

The Three Needs in RCR Education

  1. The involvement of research supervisors in the education of trainees
  2. Development and articulation of field-specific norms and practices – which requires the involvement of those supervisors
  3. Development and formulation of norms for research in engineering fields – which are quite different research environments from those in the natural science and especially from biomedicine which has been the first focus of education efforts in RCR.
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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Joseph Whittaker
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Summary Excerpt

Outreach & Assessment

Despite significant and unprecedented scientific, engineering and technological advances as well as educational innovations in the past century, efforts directed toward training, outreach and assessment in a world which demands an increasingly complex set of ethical standards of conduct lag significantly behind.

In addressing issues of outreach in Ethics Training, one approach may be to consider the many parallels with ‘knowledge management’, i.e., developing an important and effective strategy of getting the right information to the appropriate audiences at the right time while assisting with dissemination and implementation – in ways that will ultimately improve performance as well as compliance with accepted standards. A wide variety of methods and approaches are currently in use. However, broad-based effectiveness remains undetermined as no ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Wendy Williams
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presentation Summary

Needs and Issues for Ethics Education in Scientific and Engineering Research

Designing Postdoc RCR Training Programs that Emphasize Knowledge Application Rather than Knowledge Acquisition The America COMPETES Act HR2722 requires institutions and investigators requesting funding from the National Science Foundation to provide a description of mentoring activities and a plan for ethics instruction. This act affords us the opportunity to reconsider the effectiveness of RCR training on actual decision-making in crisis situations.

Traditional RCR “training” (which includes mentoring as recommended by NIH) alone is not enough. Current RCR training approaches provide instruction and introduce postdocs to RCR topics but may not be designed to impact the ability of a trainee to make an ethically sound decision or judgment down the road when faced with a dilemma. I suggest that ... More

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Ethics Education Workshop Presentation - Sara Wilson
Workshop on Ethics Education and Scientific and Engineering Research

Presenation Excerpt

Responsible Conduction of Engineering (RCE)

Responsible conduct of research (RCR) classes, web tutorials, conferences, and seminars are becoming common across universities in the United States. Materials for these programs are focused predominately on graduate students and post-doctoral trainees with typically limited involvement of research faculty. For undergraduate engineering students, ABET accreditation requirements mandate material on engineering ethics be presented. These presentations to undergraduates range from classes in ethics given by the Philosophy department to “Engineering across the curriculum” programs embedding ethics exercises into traditional engineering courses. These two levels presentations of responsible conduct are quite different with RCR courses focused almost exclusively on hypothesis-driven, experimental research and undergraduate engineering ethics ... More

August 25, 2008 08:30 AM – August 26, 2008 02:00 PM
The National Academies Keck Building
500 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC