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Values In
Technology
Advancement
Lab
Values In Technology Advancement Lab
Facilitate conversations about the ethics and social impact on technology
Values
In
Technology
Advancement
Lab
Values In Technology Advancement Lab
Facilitating conversations about the ethics and social impact of technology

VITAL is an ethics lab led by Viterbi’s Engineering in Society program. The lab’s acronym speaks to the vital need to critically engage with the ethics and social impact of technology while also acknowledging that advancements in technology are the lifeblood of progress.

Just as physiological vital signs, such as heart rate or body temperature, reflect essential bodily functions and are indicative of health or sickness, this lab’s vital signs reflect our core values:

Core Values

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Impact Orientation:

Prioritizing research and development efforts that have the potential to generate positive societal impact, improve quality of life, and address pressing global challenges

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Ethical Responsibility

Recognizing the ethical implications of technological advancements and promoting responsible and ethical use of technology for the benefit of society

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Civics

Fostering civic growth and development through, and at times despite, technological advances to empower individuals to navigate and contribute to an increasingly digital world

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Accessibility

Ensuring that technological advancements are accessible and inclusive, with a focus on addressing the needs of diverse populations

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Collaboration

Promoting collaboration across Viterbi and USC among professors, industry professionals, and students to leverage collective expertise and resources

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Innovation

Encouraging and fostering a culture of innovation to drive technological progress and development

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Continuous Learning and Improvement

Embracing a culture of continuous learning and improvement, with a commitment to staying abreast of emerging technologies, best practices, and evolving societal needs

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Impact Orientation:

Prioritizing research and development efforts that have the potential to generate positive societal impact, improve quality of life, and address pressing global challenges

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Civics

Fostering civic growth and development through, and at times despite, technological advances to empower individuals to navigate and contribute to an increasingly digital world

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Accessibility

Ensuring that technological advancements are accessible and inclusive, with a focus on addressing the needs of diverse populations

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Innovation

Encouraging and fostering a culture of innovation to drive technological progress and development

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Continuous Learning and Improvement

Embracing a culture of continuous learning and improvement, with a commitment to staying abreast of emerging technologies, best practices, and evolving societal needs

Image

Collaboration

Promoting collaboration across Viterbi and USC among professors, industry professionals, and students to leverage collective expertise and resources

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Ethical Responsibility

Recognizing the ethical implications of technological advancements and promoting responsible and ethical use of technology for the benefit of society

Projects

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    Ethos Project

    The Ethos Project is a dynamic component of the VITAL lab, fostering the development of a variety of projects in their pilot phases. Situating this ideas incubator within VITAL encourages the exploration of sociotechnical values and the broadening of student participation in ethics-focused endeavors within and beyond the classroom.
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    Viterbi Conversation in Ethics magazine

    Viterbi Conversations in Ethics is an educational forum for reasoned, informed, and relevant discussion of engineering ethics. Written, edited, and published by USC Viterbi School of Engineering students, Viterbi Conversations in Ethics will publish exceptional student work and responses, counter-points, and new perspectives from both peers and professionals.
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    Visiting Scholar

    A practitioner or research fellow in tech ethics will engage in rigorous research, produce publications, and serve as a mentor and facilitator during Tech Ethics Workshops

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    Ethics Across the Viterbi Curriculum Initiative

    (Currently called Ethics consultations for Viterbi Faculty) Viterbi faculty are invited to book appointments with Engineering in Society and VITAL affiliate faculty to discuss ethics and social impact modules, learning outcomes, and assignments

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    Ethics Bowl

    In collaboration with the Philosophy Department, VITAL trains and sponsors the USC Association for Practical and Professional Ethics Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl team

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    Distinguished Lecture Series

    Postdoctoral fellows across USC are invited to join the VITAL discussion group to network, collaborate, and get to know other fellows interested in interdisciplinary approaches to engaging with advances in technology.

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    Viterbi Ethics in Industry Cohorts

    The Ethics in Industry Cohort is composed of engineering-based industry professionals who are interested in the ethics and social impact of technology.

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    Interdisciplinary Post-Doc Discussion Group

    Postdoctoral fellows across USC are invited to join the VITAL discussion group to network, collaborate, and get to know other fellows interested in interdisciplinary approaches to engaging with advances in technology.

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    The Good Life

    The Good Life is a series of luncheon discussions for undergraduate engineering students dedicated to exploring what it means to live a good life as a person and as an engineer.

    Meet our Team

    Discover the talented individuals who drive VITAL forward. Our team is comprised of passionate professionals who bring a diverse range of skills and expertise to the table.

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      Katherine Brichacek

      (Lead Faculty)

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      Harly Ramsey

      (EiS Faculty)

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      Martha Townsend

      (EiS Faculty)

      Published on February 7th, 2024

      Last updated on April 5th, 2024