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2009 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

47. Automation and Ethics

Authors: Dr Srinivasan Ramaswamy, PhD Hemant Joshi

Published in: Springer Handbook of Automation

Publisher: Springer Berlin Heidelberg

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Abstract

Should we trust automation? Can automation cause harm to individuals and to society? Can individuals apply automation to harm other individuals? The answers are yes; hence, ethical issues are deeply associated with automation. The purpose of this chapter is to provide some ethical background and guidance to automation professionals and students. Governmental action and economic factors are increasingly resulting in more global interactions and competition for jobs requiring lower-end skills as well as those that are higher-end endeavors such as research. Moreover, as the Internet continually eliminates geographic boundaries, the concept of doing business within a single country is giving way to companies and organizations focusing on serving and competing in international frameworks and a global marketplace. Coupled with the superfluous nature of an Internet-driven social culture, the globally-distributed digitalization of work, services and products, and the reorganization of work processes across many organizations have resulted in ethically challenging questions that are not just economically, or socially sensitive, but also highly culturally sensitive. Like the shifting of commodity manufacturing jobs in the late 1900s, standardization of information technology and engineering jobs have also accelerated the prospect of services and jobs more easily moved across the globe, thereby driving a need for innovation in design, and in the creation of higher-skill jobs. In this chapter, we review the fundamental concepts of ethics as it relates to automation, and then focus on the impacts of automation and their significance in both education and research.
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Metadata
Title
Automation and Ethics
Authors
Dr Srinivasan Ramaswamy
PhD Hemant Joshi
Copyright Year
2009
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-78831-7_47