Engineering and Society

Engineering and Society

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Engineers work in an increasingly complex entanglement of ideas, people, cultures, technology, systems and environments. Today, decisions made by engineers often have serious implications for not only their clients but for society as a whole and the natural world. Such decisions may potentially influence cultures, ways of living, as well as alter ecosystems which are in delicate balance. In order to make appropriate decisions and to co-create ideas and innovations within and among the complex networks of communities which currently exist and are shaped by our decisions, we need to regain our place as professionals, to realise the significance of our work and to take responsibility in a much deeper sense. Engineers must develop the 'ability to respond' to emerging needs of all people, across all cultures. To do this requires insights and knowledge which are at present largely within the domain of the social and political sciences but which need to be shared with our students in ways which are meaningful and relevant to engineering. This book attempts to do just that. In Part 1 Baillie introduces ideas associated with the ways in which engineers relate to the communities in which they work. Drawing on scholarship from science and technology studies, globalisation and development studies, as well as work in science communication and dialogue, this introductory text sets the scene for an engineering community which engages with the public. In Part 2 Catalano frames the thinking processes necessary to create ethical and just decisions in engineering, to understand the implications of our current decision making processes and think about ways in which we might adapt these to become more socially just in the future. In Part 3 Baillie and Catalano have provided case studies of everyday issues such as water, garbage and alarm clocks, to help us consider how we might see through the lenses of our new knowledge from Parts 1 and 2 and apply this to our everyday existence as engineers. Table of Contents: Introduction / Throwing Away Rubbish / Turning on the Tap / Awakened by an Alarm Clock / Driving the SUV / Travelling to Waikiki Beachthe Union Army, General William T. Sherman, said that the use of landmines a€œwas not war, but murdera€ (Sherman, 2000). ... One of the most effective anti-personnel types was the German-made a€œbouncing betty, a€ designed to jump from the ground to hip height ... Since 1945, land mines have been used throughout the world in wars ofliberation, civil wars, and local conflicts, with a devastating impact onanbsp;...

Title:Engineering and Society
Author:Caroline Baillie, George Catalano
Publisher:Morgan & Claypool Publishers - 2009-10-08


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