Monday, June 25, 2012

New Books to Check Out

CSEP Library has just gotten a large batch of news books in that are available to check out...too many to list, but here are some of the highlights.

Engineers of Revolutionary Russia: Iurii V. Lomonsov (1876-1952) and the Railways by Anthony Heywood

Hold Paramount: The Engineer's Responsibility to Society by P. Aarne Vesilind and Alastair S. Gunn. (2nd ed)

Patent Failure: How Judges, Bureaucrats, and Lawyers Put Innovators at Risk by James Bessen and Michael J. Meurer

The Oxford Handbook of Business Ethics by George G. Brenkert and Tom L. Beauchamp

We should be getting another batch in early July, so please be sure to check back for the new titles!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Informed Consent & Use of Information for Other Purposes

A recent article in Nature by Ericka  Check Hayden talks about some of the problems that can come up in the informed consent process when participants in research don't feel very informed by the process. In an age where data about individuals is getting gathered and used on am much larger basis,  participants in research and the researchers themselves are often not entirely clear about how data may be used in the future, or if this data will remain protected. With all this confusion, some people are less willing to participate in research than they used to be, and researchers often feel confused about how they should approach this issue.

So what should we do? The article discusses some better potential models for consent, including the potential for new technology that will allow participants to control and track how their data is used.

Let us know what you think! How can the informed consent process catch up to the reality of research today?

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Boeing Scholars Academy Ethics Bowl - July 5th, 1:30-5 pm

On July 5th, 100 high school students will be participating in the second annual Boeing Scholars Academy Ethics Bowl as part of the Boeing Scholars Academy summer program. During the afternoon, teams of students will discuss a series of two cases directly related to this summer’s theme, “local action, broader impact.” The ethics cases studies were developed based on ideas from a brainstorming session held with Boeing Scholars Academy students on June 19th, and center around the issues of social media, the ethical gathering and use of data, and issues of public health and environmental sustainability.

In an ethics bowl competition, a moderator poses questions to teams of students based on cases they have read and discussed. A panel of judges then evaluates the answers based on the following criteria; intelligibility, focus on ethically relevant considerations, avoidance of ethical irrelevance, and deliberative thoughtfulness.  The Ethics Bowl competition was first started by Dr. Robert Ladenson at IIT in 1993, and has grown in popularity ever since, now encompassing the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl in which over 132 teams of undergraduate students around the U.S. compete in, as well as the newly formed National High School Ethics Bowl which will be holding its first national competition in Chapel Hill in April of 2013.  

The Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions has been working closely with Boeing Scholars Academy program staff to organize this event.  We have a number of distinguished judges who have volunteered to be a part of this event, including Ethics and Compliance Officers from a number of major Chicago-area companies, IIT faculty, and students from IIT’s Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl team. We look forward to an exciting and thought-provoking afternoon, and invite everyone to come and watch the fun!  The competition will be held in the E-1 building from 2:45-3:45 pm, and signs will be posted showing participants and visitors where to go. For more information, please email Kelly Laas at

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Women in Science

The latest edition of Science Careers, focuses on women in science- namely how far we have come, and the places where we still have a ways to go. I was also interested in the review of  Breaking into the Lab: Engineering Progress for Women in Science, which I shall be ordering for the library shortly. 

Summer Hours

The CSEP Library will be open Monday-Friday, 9-5 during the summer session. As we are involved in a number of summer programs, please call or email if you would like to schedule a reference interview, though you can get access to the library by stepping into room 204 across the highway if the library is closed when you come by.