4TU.Ethics member Behnam Taebi gives Studium Generale lecture ‘Good Governance of Climate and Energy Risks in the Face of Normative Uncertainties’

On Friday 25th January 2019 12:00-13:00 in the Zwarte Doos, TU/e campus

Abstract: Governing technological risks is not only a technical matter, but also a matter of ethical and societal considerations. Risk governance scholars and practitioners therefore argue that risk decisions must include all stakeholders. However, inclusiveness cannot account for normative uncertainties; i.e. when there is no unequivocal right or wrong decision and it is unclear how one ought to act. Moreover, inclusiveness cannot adjudicate between different normative priorities of stakeholders. Further, concerning transboundary and intergenerational risks (e.g. energy and climate risks), it is impossible to include all stakeholders, which exacerbates normative uncertainties. Good governance of technological risk would require us to identify and address normative uncertainties.

Dr. Behnam Taebi is Associate Professor in ethics of technology at Delft University of Technology, and Associate with the Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University. He studied Material Science and Engineering (2006) and received his Ph.D. in Philosophy of Technology (2010). His research interests are in energy ethics, nuclear ethics, responsible research and innovation (RRI) and engineering ethics. Taebi has finished a Veni project (2014-2018) and he is currently working on a joint RRI project on understanding controversies in energy technologies (both projects awarded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). Taebi is the coordinating editor of a volume on The Ethics of Nuclear Energy (Cambridge University Press, 2015) and co-editor of six special issues with Journal of Risk Research (2015 and 2019), Sustainability (2019), Science and Engineering Ethics (2019), International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (2019) and Risk, Hazard, Crisis and Public Policy (2019). Taebi is currently writing a monograph on Ethics and Engineering (under contract with Cambridge University Press). He is a member of The Dutch Royal Young Academy of Arts and Sciences (in Dutch: KNAW/DJA) and a member of the OECD Expert Group on ‘Transdisciplinary Research’.