A Hippocratic Oath for Technologists

Forthcoming, “Next Generation Ethics: Engineering a Better Society” (2018)

Stanford University Graduate School of Business Research Paper No. 19-4

9 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2018

See all articles by Ali Abbas

Ali Abbas

Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making

Max Senges

Stanford University - Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law; Google Inc.

Ronald A. Howard

Stanford Graduate School of Business

Date Written: October 1, 2018

Abstract

This paper presents an ethical creed, which we refer to as the Hippocratic Oath for Technologists. The creed is built on three fundamental pillars: proactively understanding the ethical implications of technology for all stakeholders, telling the truth about the capabilities, advantages, and disadvantages of a technology, and acting responsibly in situations you find morally challenging. The oath may be taken by students at Universities after understanding its basic definitions and implications, and it may also be discussed with technology firms and human resources departments to provide the necessary support and understanding for their employees who wish to abide by the norms of this oath. This work lays the foundations for the arguments and requirements of a unified movement, as well as a forum for signing up for the oath to enable its wide-spread dissemination.

Keywords: ethics, technology, instruments, governance, responsibility, innovation

Suggested Citation

Abbas, Ali and Senges, Max and Howard, Ronald A., A Hippocratic Oath for Technologists (October 1, 2018). Forthcoming, “Next Generation Ethics: Engineering a Better Society” (2018) ; Stanford University Graduate School of Business Research Paper No. 19-4. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3274327

Ali Abbas

Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making ( email )

2250 Alcazar Street
Los Angeles, CA 90089
United States

Max Senges (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law ( email )

616 Serra St. C100
tanford University
Stanford, CA 94305-6055
United States

Google Inc. ( email )

1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Second Floor
Mountain View, CA 94043
United States

Ronald A. Howard

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

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