Tuesday, November 5, 2019

New Publication on Ethical Issues in Brain-to-Brain Interfaces

Dr. Elisabeth Hildt, director of the Ethics Center, has a new publication out exploring ethical issues raised by brain-to-brain interfaces. Check it out!


Multi-Person Brain-To-Brain Interfaces: Ethical Issues

  • Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, IL, United States
While the idea of a network of brains directly communicating via brain-to-brain interfaces (BBIs) may sound like science fiction to some, it actually is not. BBIs allow for technology mediated direct communication between two brains without involving the peripheral nervous system. They consist of two components: a brain-computer interface (BCI) that detects neural signals from one brain and translates them to computer commands, and a computer-brain interface (CBI) that delivers computer commands to another brain....

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Invitation to Participate in a Study on Emotional Attachment to Virtual Assistants

The Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions would like to invite Illinois Tech students who are interested in participating in an interview study regarding the investigation of the perceptions and emotional attachments to commercially available virtual assistants. The interview will take approximately 30 minutes and participants will receive a $10 gift card for taking part in this study. 

If interested, please email us at csep@iit.edu for more information. 

Friday, May 31, 2019

Call for Applications: Training STEM Faculty New to Teaching Ethics

The National Academy of Engineering Online Ethics Center (OEC) of the Center for Engineering Ethics and Society will hold a 1½-day workshop on Training STEM Faculty New to Teaching Ethics. Applications are invited from STEM faculty who wish to identify opportunities to integrate ethics and responsible conduct of research (RCR) guidance in their courses and research environments. Workshop presenters and participants will explore a variety of hands-on tools and approaches, both formal and ad hoc, including the use of the OEC as both a teaching tool and resource for materials. Participants will consider their own classes and research projects as well as the approaches and materials presented to create or enhance a learning activity, such as a class plan, course syllabus, or laboratory practice. This workshop is designed to help faculty and others seeking to fulfill (a) NSF and NIH requirements for providing RCR instruction and (b) ABET ethics education expectations.

The OEC is looking for faculty, researchers, and/or administrators who are eager to develop strategies and plans for incorporating ethics in their courses or research environments. Some spots will be reserved for individual attendees. Applicants are sought who will broadly represent a range of STEM disciplines, including the social sciences; graduate and undergraduate instructors; and a variety of academic institutions (e.g., liberal arts colleges, large public universities, institutions serving underrepresented populations, private research institutions).

The workshop will be held October 22–23, 2019, at the National Academies’ Keck Building in Washington, DC. There is no fee for workshop registration. Participants are expected to cover their travel costs. Limited funds are available for travel assistance in cases of financial need. 

Please share this announcement with those you think would be interested.

The application deadline is Monday, July 15, 2019. 


To apply and for more information: 



Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Lori Andrews and Ethics and the Double Helix: April 1, 2019, Wishnick Hall Room 113

Please join QED: The Ethical Debaters for a fantastic talk by Lori Andrews titled Ethics and the Double Helix on April 1, 2019, 12:45-1:45 in Wishnick Hall, Room 113

Genetic technologies make it possible to assess and even alter a person’s genome, raising a wealth of ethical questions.  Should insurers be able to deny coverage to a healthy person whose genome indicates he or she will be at a higher risk of cancer later in life?  Should police be able to use ancestry DNA databases to find suspected criminals?  Should parents be able to edit their embryo’s genome, possibly added traits from other species, such as to give their future child the running speed of a cheetah?  What are our responsibilities as scientists, ethicists, and members of the public in the design of the next generation?

Lori Andrews is a University Distinguished Professor of Law at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law and Director of IIT’s Institute for Science, Law and Technology. She’s written 14 books, including three mysteries involving a female geneticist. Her latest non-fiction book is I Know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did: Social Networks and the Death of Privacy.  She chaired the federal advisory committee to the Human Genome Project, advised the Chicago Historical Society on the ethics of testing Abe Lincoln’s DNA, and counseled the science ministers of twelve countries on the issues of embryo stem cells, gene patents, and DNA banking. Lori’s path-breaking litigation about technologies caused the National Law Journal to list her as one of the “100 Most Influential Lawyers in America.” The American Bar Association Journal describes Lori as “a lawyer with a literary bent who has the scientific chops to rival any CSI investigator.”  She received her B.A. summa cum laude from Yale College and her J.D. from Yale Law School.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Invited Speaker: Responsible Research Practices, April 5, 2019

The Office of Research Compliance, in partnership with the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions, has announced that it will offer a lecture titled “Responsible Publication Practices” on Friday, April 5 from 2–4 p.m. A brief abstract of the lecture is included below. The lecture is a part of Illinois Institute of Technology’s Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Policy, and will feature a presentation by Associate Professor Emily E. Anderson, Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics & Healthcare Leadership, Stritch School of Medicine at Loyola University Chicago. Anderson earned a Ph.D. in health care ethics from Saint Louis University and an M.P.H. in community health sciences (health education/health promotion) from the University of Illinois at Chicago. The event will take place at Wishnick Hall, Room 113, and will include light refreshments.
Abstract: “Publication of your scientific work is not just necessary for career advancement, it is a professional ethical obligation. While writing and submitting a paper for publication may seem straightforward, there are many challenges, and potential missteps that may ultimately result in research misconduct. This session will review best practices for determining authorship, citing references appropriately, avoiding plagiarism, and navigating the process of selecting a journal and peer review process.”
The RCR is a required program for all sponsored researchers. Federal regulations require researchers supported by a funding agency to complete RCR training. In order to ensure that RCR requirements have been fulfilled, all Illinois Tech-sponsored projects, regardless of funding source, must follow the university policy.
Illinois Tech’s RCR policy comprises three distinct parts: (1) completing one RCR training course through the CITI Program, (2) attending at least one in-person RCR lecture/workshop, and (3) participating in face-to-face RCR instruction led by the faculty investigator for the project.
Ongoing lectures and workshops covering topics in ethical research with a focus on RCR themes will be offered. All researchers on an Illinois Tech-sponsored project must attend at least one lecture or workshop. Check the Office of Research Compliance website for upcoming lectures and workshops.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Registration open for Informed Experiences, Designing Consent Symposium on April 6th

Designs, whether implicitly or explicitly, cite core values that drive their development and marketing. Efficiency and profit are two common principles that push design.

Informed Experiences, Designing Consent offers a space to consider centering consent as a core value of design. We invite creative individuals, researchers, ethicists, and designers, especially those with burning questions, critical theories, and insightful projects about design practices and consent, to join us for this one-day event on April 6, 2019 at Illinois Tech’s Downtown Campus (565 W. Adams). While we are talking about design and consent, we welcome people working on theoretical, reflective, and reception/audience perspectives of these concepts and encourage interested people to register for this event!

This symposium will use a “Learn, Make, Reflect” Model to interrogate the intersections of consent and design of interactive media and technologies. Here, we use panels, workshops, and discussion for attendees to prototype designs that center on consent and iterate on this process. We will provide simple prototyping materials for groups to collaborate on exploring the intersections of theory and practice in our maker-sessions.

Informed Experiences, Designing Consent is hosted by the Illinois Institute of Technology Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions and the HASTAC Scholars fellowship program. It is organized by Michael Anthony DeAnda, Elisabeth Hildt, Kelly Laas, and Leilasadat Mirghaderi with generous sponsorship from the Coleman Foundation.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

CSEP receives NSF Funding for Ethics Education Library

The Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions has received funding from the National Science Foundation to continue its collaboration with the National Academy of Engineering's Center for Engineering, Ethics, and Society as part of the project, "Transforming Ethics Education: Connecting STEM Faculty, Research Administrators, and Ethics Education Resources through the Online Ethics Center." As a partner, CSEP will receive $145,000 over the next three and a half years to both improve the Ethics Education Library and the Ethics Codes Collection,as well as continue to assist in expanding and improving the Online Ethics Center.

The goal of this project is to update and improve the Online Ethics Center (OEC). The investigators will do so by better engaging faculty and administrators who are new to teaching ethics, and by conducting a series of workshops with the user community that will enable them to gather multiple types of social science data and systematically assess how the OEC can better meet the needs of its constituents. Grant funds will also be used for regular site maintenance and to hire an expert external evaluator to formally assess OEC's activities and aid the investigators in improving site usability and updating the resource collection that they provide. Together, these efforts will help improve the quality of STEM ethics education and encourage and equip U.S. researchers to engage in ethical scientific practice.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Society for Neuroscience Conference William and June Pizzi Travel Award - Apply Now!

Illinois Tech undergraduate students interested in neuroscience are invited to apply for a $1,000 travel award to attend Neuroscience 2019, the Society for Neuroscience’s Annual Meeting in Chicago. The conference is the world’s largest neuroscience conference—with more than 30,000 attendees from 80 countries—for scientists and physicians devoted to understanding the brain and nervous system.

To apply for the travel award, please submit an abstract on the Society for Neuroscience website and send a copy to Elisabeth Hildt (ehildt@iit.edu), director of the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions, between April 11 and May 2, 2019. Students can be part of a research team; you do not need to be the first author on the submitted abstract. The travel award is possible by a generous gift from Illinois Tech psychology alumnus William Pizzi (Ph.D. ’72).

The Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting will be October 19-23, 2019 in Chicago, IL.

Learn more about the conference and submit an abstract: http://www.sfn.org/meetings/neuroscience-2019

The travel award is made possible by a generous gift from Illinois Tech psychology alumnus William Pizzi (Ph.D. '72).

Please see the flyer  below for more details!