Towards a design science of ethical decision support

Journal of Business Ethics 76 (3):269 - 292 (2007)
Abstract
Ethical decision making involves complex emotional, cognitive, social, and philosophical challenges. Even if someone wants to be ethical, he or she may not have clearly articulated what that means, or know how to go about making a decision consistent with his or her values. Information technology may be able to help. A decision support system could offer individuals and groups some guidance, assisting them in making a decision that reflects their underlying values. The first step towards a design science of ethical decision support is to develop a theoretical base on which first-generation systems can be built. This paper brings together work in cognitive, social and moral psychology, information systems, and philosophy relevant to ethical decision making. Attributes of a system that would support ethical decision making are described.
Keywords Cognition  decision support systems  design science  emotion  ethics  group support systems  philosophy
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