Dr.Pols, A.J.K. (Auke)

Eindhoven University of Technology

Section: Philosophy and Ethics
Faculty: Industrial Engineering & Innovation Sciences

Domain-Specific Ethics
Ecological Ethics
Environmental Ethics
Ethics of Energy
Methods and Approaches
responsible innovation
Visiting address

Room IPO 1.09, School of Innovation Sciences, Eindhoven University of Technology

Mail address

P.O. Box 513 5600 MB EINDHOVEN The Netherlands


+31 (0)40 247 3253


+31 (0)40 244 4602


Auke Pols (1979) is a postdoc in the Philosophy and Ethics section at Eindhoven University of Technology. He studied Cognitive Artificial Intelligence at Utrecht University and got his PhD at Eindhoven University of Technology, where he wrote a dissertation on how we should conceptualise what actions with artefacts are, and how artefacts influence agents and agency.

Auke specialises in responsible innovation, ethics of energy technologies and environmental ethics. He has worked on the NWO MVI-project ‘Biofuels: sustainable innovation or gold rush?’, where he has investigated ethical aspects of biofuel governance, production and use, and now works on the NWO MVI-project ‘Developing and implementing smart grids in India’, where he investigates ethical aspects of using smart grids for alleviating energy poverty in rural India.



  • Pols, A.J.K. (2015). Affordances and use plans: an analysis of two alternatives to function-based design. Artifical Intelligence for Engineering Design, Analysis and Manufacturing, 29(3), 239-247.
  • Pols, A.J.K. (2015). The Rationality of Biofuel Certification: A Critical Examination of EU Biofuel Policy. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 28(4), 667-681. DOI 10.1007/s10806-015-9550-2.
  • Balkema, A.J. and Pols, A.J.K. (2015). Biofuels; Sustainable innovation or gold rush? Identifying responsibilities for biofuel innovations. In: E. J. Koops, I. Oosterlaken, H. A. Romijn, T. E. Swierstra and J. Van den Hoven (eds.), Responsible Innovation, vol. 2, 283-303. Dordrecht, Springer.
  • Pols, A.J.K. and Spahn, A. (2015). Design for the Values of Democracy and Justice. In J. van den Hoven, I. van de Poel and P. Vermaas (Eds.) Handbook of Ethics, Values and Technological Design: Sources, Theory, Values and Application Domains, pp. 335 – 364. Dordrecht: Springer.



  • Pols, A.J.K. 2013. Certification for sustainable biofuels. In: H. Röcklinsberg and P. Sandin (Eds.) The ethics of consumption: The citizen, the market and the law, pp. 77-82. Wageningen: Wageningen Academic Publishers.
  • Pols, A.J.K. 2013. Choosing your poison and the time of a killing. Philosophical Studies 165(3), 719-733. DOI 10.1007/s11098-012-9975-7.
  • Pols, A.J.K. 2013. How Artefacts Influence Our Actions. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16(3), 575-587. DOI 10.1007/s10677-012-9377-0. available online
  • Houkes, W.N. and Pols, A.J.K. (2013). Plans for Modeling Rational Acceptance of Technology. In: D. Goldberg, N. McCarthy and D. Michelfelder (Eds.). Philosophy and Engineering: Reflections on Practice, Principles, and Process. Dordrecht: Springer.


  • Pols, A.J.K. 2012. “Characterising affordances: The descriptions-of-affordances-model” Design Studies 33, 113-125. doi:10.1016/j.destud.2011.07.007 available online


  • Pols, A.J.K. 2011. Acting with Artefacts. Dissertation. Eindhoven, Eindhoven University of Technology. available online
  • Pols, Auke J.K., and Wybo Houkes. 2011. “What is morally salient about enhancement technologies?” Journal of Medical Ethics 37(2): 84-87. available online


  • Pols, A.J.K. 2010. Transferring Responsibility Through Use Plans. In Philosophy and Engineering: An Emerging Agenda edited by I. van de Poel and D.E. Goldberg. Dordrecht: Springer.



  • Pols, A.J.K. 2014. In wereld met absolute schaarste gaat groei uiteindelijk altijd ten koste van een ander. Opiniestuk in Het Financieele Dagblad, 18 februari 2014.
  • Pols, A.J.K. and Romijn, H.A. (2014). Irreversible Social Change. In G. Collste and L. Reuter (Eds.) Proceedings from the 50th Societas Ethica Annual Conference 2013: Climate Change, Sustainability and an Ethics of an Open Future, August 22-25, 2013, Soesterberg, The Netherlands, pp. 79-99. Linköping, Sweden: Linköping University Electronic Press.