News

04.02.19

Awarded the “University Pearl”

The Future Skills “university pearl”, an award of the Stifterverband (Donors’ Association), will go to Saarland University in January 2019. Teachers of computer science and philosophy have jointly developed the lecture “Ethics for Nerds”, which teaches students of computer science and related courses basic ethical skills and sensitizes them to the social responsibility of computer science. In this way, the lecture raises students’ awareness of possible undesirable developments and enables them to develop morally desirable solutions themselves.

 

“An important topic and a catchy title that appeals very well to the target group,” said the jury of the Stifterverband. “In the process of mechanization and digitization, computer scientists are faced with a rapidly growing social responsibility – it is important that they become aware of this task and learn how to deal with it.”

The background to the lecture, which was initiated in 2015, was the observation that the influence of computer science on our society and our everyday life has increased enormously in the last decade. This raises numerous moral issues, such as decisions made by artificial intelligence in hospitals or on the motorway, and the problem of filter bubbles in social networks. However, these aspects have so far not played a role in the training of computer scientists.

“The Ethics for Nerds project seeks to fill this gap,” says the press release of the Stifterverband, as the lecture conveys knowledge from the fields of moral philosophy, technology assessment, machine ethics and argumentation theory.

Picture: Credits: Sarah Sterz

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