1.082, 2.900, 6.904, 10.01, 22.014 Ethics for Engineers
Integrates classical readings that provide an overview of ethics with a survey of case studies that focus on ethical problems arising in the practice of engineering. Readings taken from a variety of sources, such as Aristotle, Machiavelli, Bacon, Hobbes, Locke, the Founding Fathers, and the Bible. Case studies include written analyses and films that address engineering disasters, biotechnology, court cases, ethical codes, and the ultimate scope and aims of engineering.
Dr. Daniel Doneson and Professor B. L. Trout
Meets: M3-5 (66-144) or T3-5 (66-168) or T EVE (7.30-9.30 PM) (66-144) or W3-5 (66-160)
10.02 Foundations of Principled Entrepreneurship for Engineers
Dr. Daniel Doneson and Professor B. L. Trout
Meets: M2-5 (56-169)
Studies economic and leadership foundations of entrepreneurship as they relate to engineering. Case studies illustrate major impacts of engineering on the world and examine the leaders responsible for such impacts. Authors include Franklin, Keynes, Leonardo, Lincoln, Locke, Machiavelli, Marx, Schmidt, Schumpeter, Smith, Thiel, and Tocqueville. Discusses topics such as the difference between an entrepreneur and a manager, the entrepreneur as founder, and characteristics of principled entrepreneurship.
10.05 Foundational Analyses of Problems in Energy and the Environment (New)
Dr. Daniel Doneson and Dr. Derek Mess
Meets: W2-5 (66-144)
Investigates key texts and papers on the foundational thought of current issues in energy and environmental science. Builds an understanding of key debates (scientific, ethical, and political). Aims to inform solutions to key problems related to procurement of energy and environmental degradation. Topics address alternative energy technologies and fossil fuel utilization and emissions, especially carbon dioxide, carbon dioxide sequestration, and geoengineering. Foundational readings from Homer and Greek playwrights, Aristotle, Genesis, Bacon, Locke, Rousseau, Coleridge, Carnot, Clausius, Marx, Heidegger, Carson, Gore, Singer, and Brundtland. Assignments include weekly analyses of readings, videos and related engineering calculations in addition to a final project.
Limited to 18.
10.A21 Foundations of Principled Entrepreneurship
Dr. Daniel Doneson
Meets: T3-5 (66-168)
It is no secret that wonderful things can happen when deep technical knowledge is informed by entrepreneurial principles and skills. The world’s myriad problems are addressed by new creations; new markets take shape, and wholly new industries and fields of inquiry are born. There is a tremendous potential for growth — economic, political and social — when technologists possess these insights and skills. Thus, the technology entrepreneurs, the truly successful technology entrepreneurs, must know more than how to solve technical problems or master careful laboratory work; they must understand how to motivate others, how to make strategic decisions, how to develop a comprehensive understanding of a situation, and possess a vision and feel for exploiting opportunities.
In this seminar we aim to understand better these entrepreneurial principles so as to develop a foundation to cultivate. We will examine case studies of successful entrepreneurs together with foundational writings of some of the deepest doers and thinkers in economics, politics, science, statesmanship, and engineering. We’ll watch such films as Citizen Kane, The Godfather, Wall Street, and prod and provoke one another in searching conversations. Assignments focus on readings and class discussion with short written answers to study questions. Readings and case studies will range widely, from Machiavelli and Thucydides to Jobs and Wozniak, and a lot of other people in between.
10.A22 Engineering, Science, and the Good Life
Dr. Kathryn Sensen
Meets: T3-5 (8-119)
Here you are at the world’s greatest university for science and engineering, with four years ahead of you to study what you want, and prepare for whatever career you like. However, most of your time at MIT will be crammed with challenging P-Sets and labs, leaving you with little chance to reflect on what you’re doing, and why.
This seminar provides the opportunity for students to reflect on the roles science and engineering play in your lives and society at large. With the help of some great writers and insightful films, we’ll consider the purposes of studying science and engineering; the ends for which science and engineering knowledge can be used; innovations that would improve the world; whether our primary goal in science should be to understand nature or to control it; and how becoming a scientist or engineer fits into our own pursuit of a good life. We’ll have some lively and probing discussions of these questions; read selections from authors like Plato, Hobbes, Tocqueville, Aldous Huxley and W.K. Lewis, and watch and discuss some fun and thought-provoking movies like Gattaca, Lost Horizon, and Minority Report.