HUM-384 / 2 credits

Teacher: Rochel Johan Robert

Language: English


Summary

This course enables students to sharpen their proficiency in tackling ethical challenges linked to robots. Students acquire the competence to define a robot and identify ethical and legal questions linked to technology and to the increased use of robots in society.

Content

Keywords

robots, ethics, law, innovation, responsibility

 

POLY-perspective :

  • interdisciplinary perspective
  • citizen perspective

https://www.epfl.ch/schools/cdh/cdhs-vision/

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the student must be able to:

  • Define the concept of robots
  • Define the different contexts in which the concept is used
  • Assess / Evaluate the distinct thematic challenges raised in specific contexts of the uses(or applications) of robots: military, medical, service, transportation, and logistics
  • Systematize these contexts with explicit design requirements and their ethical justifications
  • Identify the broader justice issues raised by the wide deployment of robotic technology
  • Assess / Evaluate the different senses/conceptions/interpretations of agency, autonomy and responsibility in the context of robots
  • Interpret current social/legal challenges

Transversal skills

  • Demonstrate the capacity for critical thinking
  • Write a scientific or technical report.
  • Take account of the social and human dimensions of the engineering profession.

Teaching methods

The course will be organized as an interactive and participative course. Students have to read texts for each session and to be ready for critical discussion.

Expected student activities

weekly reading of preparatory texts

active participation in class

writing of papers 

 

Assessment methods

Students will be assessed twice :

-        One-pager including the key elements of a preparatory text – 30% of the grade 

-        Short paper on a freely chosen issue (or topic) (5-7 pages)  - 70% of the grade

 

Supervision

Office hours No
Assistants No
Forum No
Others by appointment 

Resources

Bibliography

Lin, P., Abney, K. and Bekey, G. A. eds., 2014. Robot Ethics: The Ethical and Social Implications of Robotics. London, MIT Press

Ford, M., 2015. Rise of the Robots: Technlogy and the Threat of Jobless Future.  New  York,  Basic Books.

 

Ressources en bibliothèque

In the programs

  • Semester: Fall
  • Exam form: During the semester (winter session)
  • Subject examined: The ethics of robots
  • Lecture: 2 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks

Reference week

 MoTuWeThFr
8-9     
9-10     
10-11     
11-12     
12-13     
13-14     
14-15     
15-16     
16-17     
17-18     
18-19     
19-20     
20-21     
21-22