Teaching Engineering Ethics across National Borders

  • Published : 2007.06.30

Abstract

Recently there has arisen an increasing world-wide emphasis on teaching ethics within the engineering curriculum. Much of the teaching has relied on the use of an American model emphasizing autonomy and professional identification. This paper argues that this model is inadequate when engineering is seen in a global perspective, because different cultural values are dominant throughout the world, some of which stand in sharp contrast to traditional Western values based on the primacy of the individual. A new global engineering ethics thus needs to be constructed which takes into account a variety of different cultural values and local circumstances, but which is able to serve as a uniting ethical foundation for engineers throughout the world. The paper suggests that the development of a global code of engineering ethics would be a fruitful way to pursue such a strategy.

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