New technologies have the potential to produce positive and unforeseeable (and possibly negative) results; among these are innovations in sustainability, nanotechnology, neurotechnology, and energy technology. By virtue of their expertise, engineers are in a unique position to understand, assess, and shape these technologies, and to inform the public about them.
This project consisted of a 1-day NAE workshop on October 14 and 15, 2003, titled "Emerging Technologies and Ethical Issues." It had three objectives:
- To describe directions of development of these emerging technologies
- To review the state of the art in engineering ethics in search of strategies and tools for addressing these emerging technologies
- To address questions as to what engineers and engineering professional organizations, such as the NAE, can and should do to ensure that these technologies are developed in socially responsible ways.