Navigation Links
Engineering textbook promotes social justice
Date:6/28/2010

BINGHAMTON -- Imagine you're an engineer charged with designing an SUV to sell in a third-world country. What sorts of questions might you consider before creating a prototype?

This is a case study from Binghamton University faculty member George Catalano's latest book series, Engineering and Society: Working Towards Social Justice. The books, which Catalano co-authored with Caroline Baillie of the University of Western Australia, encourage engineers to think about the long- and short-term implications of their projects.

"Engineers tend to be good employees," Catalano said. "If people need things designed, we tend to just design them without giving a lot of thought to their applications."

For example, in the SUV scenario, a typical engineer might consider gas prices, current supply and demand, cultural preferences and regional geography to make the product marketable. But Catalano, a professor of bioengineering, believes that it's not enough to consider only such practical factors.

"Our goal is to present a different kind of paradigm for making decisions one that includes all the different parts of society, including the environment, that too often are ignored," he said.

In the case of the third-world SUV, the book asserts that a responsible engineer would ask himself, "Will having SUVs make the citizens more or less able to live their lives freely? Will SUVs affect native or other subpopulations? Will the increased congestion, pollution and dependence on fossil fuels be acceptable? And how will SUV production and use impact ecosystems?"

By considering such questions, Catalano and Baillie write, engineers can create the greatest good for the greatest number of people.

Engineering and Society is a three-book series published this year by Morgan & Claypool as part of a larger compilation of books dealing with engineering and society. The books' authors are leading an effort to emphasize humanity and social as well as environmental justice in engineering decision-making.

The movement began in 2004 when Catalano became concerned about the use of engineered devices in the Iraq war, the impacts of engineering on the environment and the lack of very much attention paid to alleviating poverty in the world. Catalano joined with Baillie, then at Queens University, who had been having similar concerns about engineering.

Since then, Catalano has written two other ethics-related books, called Engineering Ethics: Peace, Justice, and the Earth (2006) and Engineering, Poverty, and the Earth (2007).


'/>"/>

Contact: Ryan Yarosh
ryarosh@binghamton.edu
607-777-2174
Binghamton University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. IEEE-USA engineering mass media fellow begins reporting on sci-tech at Voice of America
2. Dean of the UM College of Engineering to receive 2010 IEEE Richard M. Emberson Award
3. $400,000 NRC grant to develop nuclear engineering faculty at Clemson
4. Engineering wheat arabinoxylan for new applications
5. Research & Entrepreneurship Day 2010: Engineering Innovation
6. Ultrasound pioneer receives highest award in engineering profession
7. Scientists create artificial human skin with biomechanical properties using tissue engineering
8. Michael Betenbaugh wins 2010 Cell Culture Engineering award
9. Convergent evolution in lignin biosynthesis: Tools for re-engineering biomass composition
10. Tissue engineering, imaging neuronal circuits featured in Cold Spring Harbor Protocols
11. Clemson researcher receives grant to study engineering enrollment of women, minorities
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/28/2017)... 28, 2017 The report "Video ... Monitors, Servers, Storage Devices), Software (Video Analytics, VMS), and ... Global Forecast to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market ... is projected to reach USD 75.64 Billion by 2022, ... The base year considered for the study is 2016 ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... , Mar. 23, 2017 Research and Markets ... Market Analysis & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" report ... ... at a CAGR of around 8.8% over the next decade to ... report analyzes the market estimates and forecasts for all the given ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... March 20, 2017 PMD Healthcare announces the ... and Wellness Management System (WMS), a remote, real-time lung ... 2010, PMD Healthcare is a Medical Device, Digital Health, ... dedicated to creating innovative solutions that empower people to ... intent focus, PMD developed the first ever personal spirometer, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... ... LabRoots , the leading provider of scientific trending news and interactive ... a new textbook scholarship, the second scholarship in the LabRoots program. , This ... pursuing a degree in one of the life sciences. The scholarship will provide one ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Patient Monitoring ... with Wi-Fi connectivity to reduce the amount of wiring in a healthcare facility ... compact mobile devices including infusion pumps, heart and hypertension monitoring, glucose monitoring, and ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... ... May 23, 2017 , ... Genedata, a leading provider of ... occasion with a strong presence at Bio-IT World Conference & Expo 2017 in ... invitation to all attendees to view posters on the entire range of ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... Kathy Goin is joining myClin ... brings years of expertise in establishing and leading clinical operations at Sponsors including ... occupational therapist, through a variety of leadership roles in Clinical Operations, to her ...
Breaking Biology Technology: