4TU.Ethics @ CPDP2017 – Videos online

The video recording of the 4TU.Ethics panel at “Computer, Data Protection, and Privacy” conference is online:

The panel of the EDPS’s Ethics Advisory Group on “Ethics in the Digital Era” (featuring Jeroen Van den Hoven) is also online:

Finally, check out the recording of the “Surveillance and Privacy in Smart Cities” panel, which includes a talk and discussion with Michael Nagenborg:

4TU.Ethics @ CPDP 2017

4TU.Ethics is proud to sponsor once again the Computer, Data Protection, and Privacy conference. The event takes place from January 25 until January 27, 2017, in Brussel. The 4TU.Ethics panel is dedicated to the topic “AI, Privacy, and Ethics” and will feature our members Nolen Gertz, Luisa Marin, and Iris Huis in ‘t Veld (ETICAS). They will be joined by Pete Fussey, Pierre Nicolas Schwab, Susanne Dehmel (bitkom), and Sartor Giovanni. Join us on Thursday at 14:15! And don’t miss the talks by other members of our center: Michael Nagenborg will speak at a session on “Surveillance and Smart Cities” (Wednesday, 10:30). Jeroen van den Hoven will be one of the speakers a the EDPS’ Ethics Advisory Group’s panel on “Ethics in the Digital Era.”


Colloquium TU Delft: Experiments, Exploration and Robots

Departmental colloquium TU Delft, Ethics and Philosophy of Technology

Date: November 21, 2016; 15:30 – 17:00 hr.
Location: Boardroom (A1.370)

Speaker: Viola Schiaffonati, Department of Electronics, Information and Bioengineering, Politecnico di Milano

The debate on the experimental method, its role, its limits, and its possible applications has recently gained attention in autonomous robotics. If, from the one hand, classical experimental principles, such as repeatability and reproducibility, play as an inspiration for the development of good experimental practices in this research area, from the other hand, some recent analyses have evidenced that rigorous experimental approaches are not yet full part of the research habits in this community.

In this presentation, by investigating autonomous robotics, I will claim that the traditional notion of experimentation cannot be always applied as such to computer engineering and I will propose that the notion of explorative experiment is a good candidate to be considered in some situations. By explorative experiments I mean a form of investigation of novel and interesting ideas or techniques without the typical constraints of rigorous experimental methodologies. These are experiments that are driven by the desire of investigating the realm of possibilities pertaining to the functioning of an artefact and its interaction with the environment in the absence of a proper theory or theoretical background. Moreover, while recognizing a substantial continuity of the engineering sciences with the natural ones, I will try to show why the latter need not only an adaptation from the traditional frameworks already established in the philosophy of science (Staples 2015), but also a shift from them.

In my endeavor, I plan to move along three different but interconnected directions. The first one deals with the notion of directly action-guiding experiment, as characterizing a significant part of the experimental practice in autonomous robotics, in opposition to the one of epistemic experiment. The second direction concerns the debate around engineering epistemology, and whether adapting frameworks from the traditional philosophical debate can suffice to take into account the peculiarity of the discipline. Finally, the third direction acknowledges the empirical turn in the recent philosophy of technology, introduces the framework of technoscience as an engineering way of being in science, and invites philosophers of science to take this notion seriously in order to shed light on a range of questions that have been neglected so far.

Viola Schiaffonati is associate professor at Politecnico Milano. She got the Laurea degree in Philosophy from Università degli Studi di Milano in 1999 and the PhD in Philosophy of Science from Università di Genova in 2004. She has been visiting scholar at the Department of Philosophy of the University of California at Berkeley during the academic year 2000/01 and visiting researcher at the Suppes Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Science and Technology of the Stanford University in 2005. Currently she is associate professor of Logic and Philosophy of Science at the Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria of Politecnico di Milano. Her main research interests include: the philosophical foundations of artificial intelligence and robotics, and the philosophy of computing sciences and information, with particular attention to the philosophical issues of computational science and the epistemology of experiments.

Call for Papers: First Workshop on Ethics in Natural Language Processing

To be held at EACL 2017 in Valencia on April 3 or 4, 2017


Submission deadline: Jan 16, 2017


NLP is a rapidly maturing field. NLP technologies now play a role in business applications and decision processes that affect billions of people on a daily basis. However, increasing amounts of data and computational power also mean increased responsibility and new questions for researchers and practitioners. For example, are we inadvertently building unfair biases into our data sets and models? What information is it ethical to infer from user data? How can we prioritize accountability and transparency? What are the big picture ethical consequences and implications of our work?

This one-day, interdisciplinary workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners in NLP with researchers in the humanities, social sciences, public policy, and law to identify and discuss some of the most pressing issues surrounding ethics in NLP. The focus will be on ethics as it relates to the practice of NLP—i.e., actual uses of NLP technologies—not on general aspects of academic ethics (e.g., conflicts of interest, double blind reviewing, etc.), unless they can be addressed with NLP technologies.

The workshop will consist of:
– invited talks,
– contributed talks and posters
– panel discussions

Topics of Interest:
We invite submissions by researchers and practitioners in NLP as well as the humanities, social sciences, public policy, and law on any area of NLP related to:

· Bias in NLP models (e.g., reporting bias, implicit bias).
· Exclusion and inclusion (e.g., exclusion of certain groups or beliefs, how/when to include stakeholders and representatives for the user population to be served).
· Overgeneralization (e.g., making false classifications on tasks including authorship attribution, NER, knowledge base population).
· Exposure (e.g., underrepresentation/overrepresentation of languages or groups).
· Dual use (e.g., the positive and negative aspects of NLP applications, the close relationship between government and industry interests and NLP research).
· Privacy protection (e.g., anonymization of biomedical documents, best practices for researchers in industry to ensure the privacy of their users’ data, educating the public about how much industry and government may know about them, privacy protection for data annotated with non-linguistic features such as emotion).
· Any other topic which concerns ethical considerations in NLP.

Paper submission:
Submissions have to be made electronically via the START submission system:https://www.softconf.com/eacl2017/EthNLP/. Submissions should be in PDF format and anonymized for review.

All submissions must be written in English and follow the EACL 2017 formatting requirements (available on the EACL 2017 website:http://eacl2017.org/index.php/calls/call-for-papers). We strongly advise the use of the LaTeX template files provided by EACL 2017: http://eacl2017.org/index.php/calls/call-for-papers.
· Each long paper submission must consist of up to eight pages of content, plus two pages for references. Accepted long papers will be given one additional page (i.e., up to nine pages) for content, with unlimited pages for references.
· Each short paper submission must consist of up to four pages of content, plus two pages for references. Accepted short papers will also be given one additional page (i.e., up to five pages) of content, with unlimited pages for references.

All submissions will be peer reviewed, but authors can opt for non-archival submission, since some journals won’t accept work that has been published previously.

Organizing committee:

Dirk Hovy, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
Margaret Mitchell, Google Research, USA
Shannon Spruit, Technical University Delft, The Netherlands
Michael Strube, Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies gGmbH, Germany
Hanna Wallach, Microsoft Research, USA

Workshop at the 4TU.Center for Ethics and Technology, Delft on “Health, technology, and moralization: How are technologies influencing the moralization of health?”

Health, technology, and moralization: How are technologies influencing the moralization of health?

 Date: 2.-3.12. 2016, Delft 

The moralization of health occurs when behaviors and decisions that were previously treated as matters of preference or luck come to be subject to moral evaluation, responsibility, and blame. Moralization can also occur when a new domain of health decision-making emerges with significant moral dimensions. Technology often plays an important role in moralization by providing patients and society with new levels of knowledge and control. For instance, new imaging technologies and genetic tests for prenatal screening supply previously unavailable information to parents, introducing new contexts of morally-freighted decisions. “Lifestyle” and tracking technologies give users a wealth of data about health metrics that can transform choices about diet, exercise, sleep, etc. into moral decisions. Related phenomena include ‘responsibilization’ and its reverse: assigning responsibility for health (and other outcomes) to individuals, reducing attribution of responsibility for decisions and behaviors, or changing the sorts of decisions one is expected to make. This intensive workshop will provide significant opportunities for interaction between participants. Invited speakers include Tamar Sharon (Maastricht), Kalle Grill (Umeå), Rebecca Brown (Aberdeen), Marcel Verweij (Wageningen) and Paula Boddington (Oxford).

The workshop will consider questions such as the following:

  • Which health-related behaviors and decisions are becoming moralized, and what role(s) are technologies playing in this process? In what areas of health and in which situations are technologies un-moralizing health decisions, e.g. by freeing people from the need to make decisions that were previously treated as moral, or by transforming our perception of conditions previously treated as character flaws?
  • How does moralization relate to responsibilization? Are there ways of moralizing that go beyond or move away from attributing responsibility to individuals?
  • What is the relationship between medicalization and moralization—how does seeing something primarily as a matter of health and disease invite or hinder moralization?
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of moralization in different health domains? What effects is this likely to have on the way we conceive of individual and social responsibility, blame, autonomy, justice, and on views of the good life in both the public and the private sphere?

There are a few spots available for attendees. Please register with Dr. Saskia Nagel s.k.nagel@utwente.nl

Memory & Memorialization: An Interdisciplinary Workshop

Memory & Memorialization:  An Interdisciplinary Workshop
In collaboration with the 4TU Centre for Ethics and Technology
Thursday, November 17, 2016
12:30 pm
TU Delft, Faculty of Technology, Policy, and Management
Boardroom (A1.370)
Jaffalaan 5, 2628 BX Delft
  • Anna Gotlib (Philosophy, Brooklyn College, USA):  “Longing and Remembering:  Immigrant Nostalgia as Attunement to Loss”
  • Darryl Cressman (Philosophy & Media Theory, Maastricht U):  “Sound, Space, and Listening”
  • Ciano Aydin (Philosophy, TU Delft & U Twente):  “How to Forget the Unforgettable?:  Collective Trauma, Cultural Identity and Mnemotechnologies”
  • Carola Hein (Architecture, TU Delft):  “Hiroshima: The Atomic Bomb and Kenzo Tange’s Hiroshima Peace Center”

If you have any questions please contact Veronica Alfano

The 36th Dutch-Flemish Day of Philosophy

Register now for the Dutch Flemish Day of Philosophy on Saturday October 22nd 2016 at the International School for Philosophy (ISVW) at:  http://dfdop36.weebly.com

Theme: Tall Tales

Speakers: Lily Frank, Naomi Kloosterboer, Linde van Schuppen, Trijsje Franssen, Michael Klenk, Willem der Deijl, Job de Grefte, Micah Bailey, Marlies de Brael, Jojanneke van der Veen, Gregory de Vleeschouwer, Frank van Caspel en Francien Homan

Keynote: Eva Meijer

Performance: Live Poetry Performance by Sjors Talsma
For more information on the program and registration see: http://dfdop36.weebly.com and http://www.ozsw.nl/activity/dfdop/

Everyone who is interested is more than welcome to join, the event is free!dfdop-banner-general

Conference: Theorizing Technological Mediation

Theorizing Technological Mediation

10, 16-17-18 November, @ Designlab, University of Twente






Technologies are everywhere and crucially intertwined with your life. Knowledge, morality and even the limits of our imagination are technologically mediated. What does this mean for the scientific knowledge you produce? What does it mean for the ethical evaluations and intentions you live by? And how is technology touching upon the transcendent boundaries of human existence?

On 10, 16-17-18 November, a conference is devoted to these questions in the Designlab on the campus of the University of Twente. On top of having 3 expert workshops on Technology & MoralityTechnology & Scientific Knowledge and Technology & Transcendence, we invite scholars to send in abstracts on Technological Mediation and Philosophy of Technology for a general symposium on November 17th. All those interested are cordially invited! Programs will be made available the upcoming month. For registration and additional information see:www.utwente.nl/ttm

  • November 10th: Technology and Morality
  • November 16th: Technology and Scientific Knowledge
  • November 17th: Philosophy of Technology and Technological Mediation
  • November 18th: Technology and Transcendence

This conference is part of the NWO funded VICI-program: Theorizing Technological Mediation, led by Prof. dr. ir. Peter-Paul Verbeek.