Sustaining Engineering Codes of Ethics for the Twenty-First Century

Science and Engineering Ethics 19 (1):237-258 (2013)
Abstract
How much responsibility ought a professional engineer to have with regard to supporting basic principles of sustainable development? While within the United States, professional engineering societies, as reflected in their codes of ethics, differ in their responses to this question, none of these professional societies has yet to put the engineer’s responsibility toward sustainability on a par with commitments to public safety, health, and welfare. In this paper, we aim to suggest that sustainability should be included in the paramountcy clause because it is a necessary condition to ensure the safety, health, and welfare of the public. Part of our justification rests on the fact that to engineer sustainably means among many things to consider social justice, understood as the fair and equitable distribution of social goods, as a design constraint similar to technical, economic, and environmental constraints. This element of social justice is not explicit in the current paramountcy clause. Our argument rests on demonstrating that social justice in terms of both inter- and intra-generational equity is an important dimension of sustainability (and engineering). We also propose that embracing sustainability in the codes while recognizing the role that social justice plays may elevate the status of the engineer as public intellectual and agent of social good. This shift will then need to be incorporated in how we teach undergraduate engineering students about engineering ethics
Keywords Engineering codes of ethics  Engineering education  Paramountcy clause  Social justice  Sustainability
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11948-011-9310-2
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,182
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Ethics and Intentional Climate Change.Dale Jamieson - 1996 - Climatic Change 33 (3):323--336.
Vestal Virgins and Engineering Ethics.P. Aarne Vesilind - 2002 - Ethics and the Environment 7 (1):92-101.

View all 6 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Professional Responsibility: The Role of the Engineer in Society.Steven P. Nichols - 1997 - Science and Engineering Ethics 3 (3):327-337.
Vestal Virgins and Engineering Ethics.P. Aarne Vesilind - 2002 - Ethics and the Environment 7 (1):92-101.
Engineering, Business and Professional Ethics.Simon Robinson (ed.) - 2007 - Elsevier/Butterworth-Heinemann.
The Professional Engineer: Virtues and Learning.Simon Robinson & Ross Dixon - 1997 - Science and Engineering Ethics 3 (3):339-348.
Internationalizing Professional Codes in Engineering.C. E. Harris - 2004 - Science and Engineering Ethics 10 (3):503-521.
The Good Engineer: Giving Virtue its Due in Engineering Ethics.Charles E. Harris - 2008 - Science and Engineering Ethics 14 (2):153-164.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2011-09-26

Total downloads

36 ( #143,650 of 2,172,037 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #325,336 of 2,172,037 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums