Presentation on theme: "Principles for Appropriate Technology Case Studies from Engineering Senior Projects with Global Scope Steven H. VanderLeest Professor of Engineering."— Presentation transcript:
Principles for Appropriate Technology Case Studies from Engineering Senior Projects with Global Scope Steven H. VanderLeest Professor of Engineering
Abstract Technology is a God-given gift: the incredible ability humans have to create tools from the natural resources in the creation. But while we can see the original creational good in our tools, we can also find the effects of sin. In this session we explore some Biblical principles that can guide the design and use of technology through some concrete examples -- senior projects from Calvin's engineering program that have addressed needs in other parts of the world. Significant time will be left for discussion and sharing ideas about how we can use technology in pursuit of our Christian calling.
"Scientists study the world as it is, engineers create the world that never has been." –Theodore von Karman, Hungarian/American Aeronautical Engineer, 1881 – 1963 Instead of describing technology as applied science, philosopher Martin Heidegger suggests science is applied technology
“…a distinct human cultural activity in which human beings exercise freedom and responsibility in response to God by forming and transforming the natural creation, with the aid of tools and procedures, for practical ends or purposes.” Monsma, Stephen V, ed. Responsible Technology: A Christian Perspective. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1986, p. 19.
Framework for the modes of the manifestation of technology: –Technological objects (or artifacts) –Technological activities (making and using) –Technological knowledge –Technological volition Technological objects “include all humanly fabricated material artifacts whose function depends on a specific materiality as such” …excludes sociotechnical systems, writing, poems, and novels, but includes hammers, paintings, sculpture, and physical books (but not the literature they contain). Basic types of technology: clothes, utensils, structures, apparatus, utilities, tools, machines, automata Carl Mitcham, Thinking through Technology: The Path between Engineering and Philosophy, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994, pp. 159-162.
Cultural Appropriateness Design ought to fit the culture into which it is introduced Appropriate size, scale, centralization, etc. Suitable to all involved parties (stake holders) Requires divergent thinking
Transparency Open communication about design Understandable Consistent, reliable, predictable
Design ought to carefully use earth’s resources Economic, environmental, human resources Stewardship
Completeness Harmony of form and function Promote human values and relationships Pleasing and intuitive to use Integrity
Design ought to respect the rights of all persons Consider all stake holders, not just user Justice
The design ought to show due care for persons Take into account effect on individuals – physically, socially, psychologically Example – the Good Samaritan (Luke 10) Caring
Design should be trustworthy Dependable, reliable Avoid conflicts of interest Trust
“Amaranth Expansion Project” 2006-7 Production popping of Amaranth seed
“All for Ankor” 2005-6 Building design for new university in Siem Reap, Cambodia
“Case for Cambodia” 2009-10 Master plan for Eden School of Agriculture in Cambodia.
Matthew G. Green, Kristen L. Wood, Frank T. Duda, Nolan Van Gaalen, Carl Erikson, and Steven H. VanderLeest, “Service- Learning Approaches to International Humanitarian Design Projects: A Model Based on Experiences of Faith-Based Institutions,” Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah, June, 2004.