Engineering Ethics 2.0

Rather than delegating moral reflection to ‘moral experts’, engineers should cultivate their own moral expertise. They have a key moral responsibility in the design process of risky technologies, as they have the technical expertise and are at the cradle of new developments. Engineers can reduce the risks of a technological product by developing a different design. .. They should work to cultivate their moral emotions and sensitivity, in order to be engaged in morally responsible engineering.

Prof. Dr. Sabine Roeser


Bachelor level: Basic competencies in ethics (and philosophy of science, scientific integrity and diversity) preferably through teaching lines, possibly by stand-alone course. Embedding ethics into standard curriculum, involving exemplary cases, connected to fitting, existing courses, cooperation with teachers of respective faculties, use online teaching material.

'Teaching the co-teachers’ will be provided by the Ethics and Philosophy of Technology Section.

Master's level: Specialized master course for students of all Faculties, not necessarily organized by program, but instead creating a palette of more thematic courses.

Examples of thematic courses:

    •Geoengineering and Space ethics
    •Climate ethics
    •Water ethics
    •Energy ethics
    •Risk and safety ethics
    •Computer ethics
    •Robotics/AI and ethics
    •Biotechnology and ethics
    •Health technology and ethics
    •(Urban) design ethics
    •Ethics of transportation technology and logistics
    •Environmental ethics
    •Responsible Innovation and Value Sensitive Design
    •Engineering Ethics (general)
    •Science ethics

  • each master student at TU must have taken at least one such course during the master.
  • Programs can then choose whether students should take a specific course (possibly with partially tailor-made content), or they can let students choose themselves from all the courses (or from a subset of courses).
  • Requires some standardization (5 ECTS per course incl. essay, 3 ECTS without essay)
  • provides programs and students with more flexibility
  • gives teachers and students more room to study a topic in depth.
  • can stimulate students to work on a theme in an interdisciplinary setting

Bridging program

For students who have not had ethics training in the BSc (eg because they come from another university): they are required to acquire the necessary background knowledge prior to attending their MSc-ethics course (eg through online learning environment).