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Engineering cheerful robots: An ethical consideration

Jones, Raya ORCID: 2018. Engineering cheerful robots: An ethical consideration. Information 9 (7) , pp. 152-163. 10.3390/info9070152

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Socially interactive robots in a variety of forms and function are quickly becoming part of everyday life and bring with them a host of applied ethical issues. This paper concerns meta-ethical implications at the interface among robotics, ethics, psychology, and the social sciences. While guidelines for the ethical design and use of robots are necessary and urgent, meeting this exigency opens up the issue of whose values and vision of the ideal society inform public policies. The paper is organized as a sequence of questions: Can robots be agents of cultural transmission? Is a cultural shift an issue for roboethics? Should roboethics be an instrument of (political) social engineering? How could biases of the technological imagination be avoided? Does technological determinism compromise the possibility of moral action? The answers to these questions are not straightforwardly affirmative or negative, but their contemplation leads to heeding C. Wright Mills’ metaphor of the cheerful robot.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2078-2489
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 25 June 2018
Date of Acceptance: 22 June 2018
Last Modified: 04 May 2023 02:30

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