Is There a Little Dr. Frankenstein in Everyone?

Wednesday, December 12, 2018
Frankenstein book cover

Rose-Hulman is participating in the statewide celebration of the 200th birthday of Mary Shelley’s novel “Frankenstein,” as part of Indiana Humanities’ Quantum Leap initiative. Special edition copies of the novel have been read by students, faculty and staff members this fall.

Victor Frankenstein didn’t worry about the ethics of making a living creature. And two centuries since its first publication, Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” still raises vexing questions about how far science should go.

This ethical question, along with several others, has haunted scientists and engineers for centuries. How far do we want to go with artificial intelligence or genetic engineering? Who’s responsible when an engineering project fails?

On Wednesday, Dec. 12, four Rose-Hulman professors will share their insights into the ethical responsibility of engineers and scientists. They’ll discuss their own experiences and talk about the tricky moral questions that engineers and scientists face every day.

Panelists will be:
Rebecca DeVasher, associate professor of chemistry
Emma Dosmar, assistant professor of biomedical engineering
Daniel Hartner, associate professor of philosophy
Kevin Sutterer, head of the Department of Civil Engineering

Rose-Hulman is participating in the statewide celebration of the 200th birthday of Mary Shelley’s novel “Frankenstein,” as part of Indiana Humanities’ Quantum Leap initiative. The program encourages Hoosiers to explore and celebrate the spirit of possibility and problem-solving that occurs when the humanities are bridged with science, technology, engineering, math and medicine.

Special edition copies of “Frankenstein: Annotated for Scientists and Engineers” were distributed to Rose-Hulman students, faculty and staff members for reading this fall.

Wednesday’s discussion event is supported by an Indiana Humanities grant. Another Frankenstein-inspired event is planned March 13, 2019, to examine today’s trending topics that put scientists and engineers in the ethical hot seat.
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