Science and Engineering Ethics 26 (2):851-870 (2020)

Ethical, legal and social implications are widely regarded as important considerations with respect to technological developments. Agile Worth-Oriented Systems Engineering is an innovative approach to incorporating ethically relevant criteria during agile development processes through a flexibly applicable methodology. First, a predefined model for the ethical evaluation of socio-technical systems is used to assess ethical issues according to different dimensions. The second part of AWOSE ensures that ethical issues are not only identified, but also systematically considered during the design of systems based on information and communication technology. For this purpose, the findings from the first step are integrated with approaches from worth-centered development into a process model that, unlike previous approaches to ethical system development, is thoroughly compatible with agile methodologies like Scrum or Extreme Programming. Artifacts of worth-centered development called Worth Maps have been improved to guide the prioritization of development tasks as well as choices among design alternatives with respect to ethical implications. Furthermore, the improved Worth Maps facilitate the identification of suitable criteria for system evaluations in association to ethical concerns and desired positive outcomes of system usage. The potential of the AWOSE methodology has been demonstrated in the context of a technical system that supports elderly and people with particular handicaps.
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DOI 10.1007/s11948-019-00133-z
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