Responsible Innovation: Ethics, Safety and Technology. MOOC.

Delft Technical University in the Netherlands offer a free online University course on Responsible Innovation that may be of interest to readers with a few hours here and there and a thirst for knowledge that would make even Jarvis Cocker proud.

The course is flexible, you can start whenever you like and run it according to personal needs. I myself have completed it, essays and all, even writing an article about it published in the Journal of Responsible Innovation.

The course offers an overview of some of the starter points for the concept of Responsible Innovation, many of which you might have come across through the previous posts in this series. The trolley problem (the ethical issues around decision-making if damage or danger is unavoidable), the problem of innovation processes becoming difficult to steer once they are in full flow, the need for standards and those proposed on EU and UK level as described in my previous post, risk management, design and frugal innovation, to name just a few.

The course also comes with a free downloadable textbook, so it’s goodbye to roaming the isles of the library hunting for a book that somebody has already taken out.

This course also addresses implementation from a business perspective, which makes for interesting reading. Models of innovation management, including economic models that talk about determinants of innovation are also included (a bit technical for the likes of me unfortunately), and questions of how businesses could address problems of risk are also presented and described.

Case studies related to ethical concerns and risks also appear thoughout the course, addressing nanotechnology, self-driving vehicles, robots, AI smart meters for electricity, autonomous weapons, nuclear energy and CO2 capture and coolants, many of which you find addressed in other posts on this website.

One major section relates to the idea of designing values and trust into processes and their products, a centerpiece of the TU Delft approach.

There are a couple of essays to submit for anyone interested in taking the course as part of their university education, with European Education points offered (ECTS) and a certificate (payment required). You can of course just watch the video lectures too if that’s more your scene.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.