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This module is designed to teach students about rights by presenting a framwork for justifying rights claims and then grounding them in everyday practice. Students learn the framework; key elements are summarized in this module. Then they are assigned a right claim which they validate and contextualize using this framework. This module is being developed as a part of an NSF-funded project, "Collaborative Development of Ethics Across the Curriculum Resources and Sharing of Best Practices," NSF SES 0551779.

Module introduction

Preliminary Draft distributed at APPE, 2005 in San Antonio, TX

Engineers and other professionals work in large corporations under the supervision of managers who may lack their expertise, skills, and commitment to professional standards. This creates communication and ethical challenges. At the very least, professionals are put in the position of having to advocate their ethical and professional standards to those who, while not being opposed to them, may not share their understanding of and commitment to them.

This module is designed to give you the tools and the practice using them necessary to prevail in situations that require advocacy of ethical and professional standards. In this module you carry out several activities. (1) You will study the philosophical and ethical foundations of modern rights theory through a brief look at Kantian Formalism. (2) You will learn a framework for examining the legitimacy of rights claims. (3) You will practice this framework by examining several rights claims that engineers make over their supervisors. This examination will require that you reject certain elements, rephrase others, and generally recast the claim to satisfy the requirments of the rights justification framework. (4) Finally, in small groups you will build tables around your reformulation of these rights claims and present the results to the class. This module will help you to put your results together with the rest of your classmates and collectively assemble a toolkit consisting of the legitimate rights claims that engineers and other professionals can make over their managers and supervisors.

For more background on rights theory and the relation of rights and duties see (1) Henry Shue, Basic Rights: Subsistence, Affluence, and U.S. Foreign Policy , 2nd edition, Princeton, 1980 and (2) Thomas Donaldson, The Ethics of International Business , Oxford, 1989. This exercise has been used in computer and engineering ethics classes at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez from 2002 on to the present. It is being incorporated into the textbook, Good Computing: A Virtue Approach to Computer Ethics by Chuck Huff, William Frey, and Jose Cruz.

What you need to know...

    Problematic right claims

  • El derecho para actuar de acuerdo a la conciencia etica y rechazar trabajos en los cuales exista una variacion de opinones morales.
  • El derecho de expresar juicio profesional, y hacer pronunciamientos publicos que sean consistentes con restricciones corporativas sobre la informacion propietaria.
  • El derecho a la lealtad corporativa y la libertad de que sea hecho un chivo expiatorio para catastrofes naturales, ineptitud de administracion u otras fuerzas mas alla del control del ingeniero.
  • El derecho a buscar el mejoramiento personal mediante estudios postgraduados y envolverse en asociaciones profesionales.
  • .El derecho a participar en actividades de partidos politicos fuera de las horas de trabajo.
  • El derecho a solicitar posiciones superiores con otras companias sin que la companis en la que trabaje tome represalias contra el ingeniero.
  • El derecho al debido proceso de ley y la libertad de que se le apliquen penalidades arbitrarias o despidos.
  • El derecho a apelar por revision ante una asociacion profesional, ombudsman o arbitro independiente.
  • El derecho a la privacidad personal.
  • Rights claims come from: Bill W. Baker. (2004) "Engineering Ethics: An Overview," in Engineering Ethics: Concepts, Viewpoints, Cases and Codes , eds. Jimmy H. Smith and Patricia M. Harper. Compiled and Published by the National Institute for Engineering Ethics: 21-22.
  • Translated into Spanish and published in: Etica en la Practica Profesional de la Ingenieria by Wilfredo Munoz Roman published in 1998 by the Colegio de Ingenieros y Agrimensores de Puerto Rico and Universidad Politecnica de Puerto Rico

Questions & Answers

Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
Ernesto
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
hi
Loga
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Corporate governance. OpenStax CNX. Aug 20, 2007 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col10396/1.10
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