June 16, 2002
June 16, 2002
June 19, 2002
7.690.1 - 7.690.12
Integrating Ethics into a Project Management Course
James E. Globig University of Dayton
ABSTRACT In today’s increasingly technical society, constant pressure exists to provide the engineering student with a comprehensive four-year curriculum that devotes sufficient attention to the traditional disciplines of the profession while at the same time anticipates areas of developing interest. As if this continued monitoring and refinement of the technical curriculum were not enough, because of the frequently competing demands placed on the new engineer in the world of commerce and government, attention must also be paid in the course curriculum to the development of non-technical skills. These non-technical skills must include not only those required to make the engineer more comfortable in the areas of sophisticated written and oral communication but should also strive to have the engineer openly and confidently evaluate ideas and products with an eye to the overall ethics of any given situation. In the era of brutal international competition, many product-producing companies have compromised ethical considerations so that, at any critical juncture in decision-making, the paramount question to be answered by the engineer has become “Is it legal?” as opposed to “Is it ethical?” This paper describes an approach to provide students in a Project Management course with the knowledge of a worldwide ethic and how to apply that ethic in engineering projects.
INTRODUCTION There is constant pressure to provide a four-year engineering curriculum with the breadth of knowledge students require as a basis for a successful career. In order to develop the non- technical skills required for success (and required by ABET) along with an increasing technical requirement, it has been necessary to integrate the non-technical knowledge and skills development into our technical curriculum.
The vast majority of the early and present day contributions in the ethics area emanate from civil engineering, chemical engineering and bioengineering. Not surprisingly, these fields can and do have significant impact on the quality and sacredness of human life. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the contribution to engineering ethics addresses the engineer only as a designer affecting the sacredness of human life. In the era of brutal international competition, however, many “lean” product-producing companies have expanded the role of project manager to include functions that were previously considered outside of the typical engineering functions. In addition, many companies have compromised ethical considerations so that, at any critical juncture in decision-making, the paramount question to be answered by the engineer has become “Is it legal?” as opposed to “Is it ethical?” Instead of confronting the ethical dilemmas directly,
“Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright Ó 2002, American Society for Engineering Education”
Globig, J. (2002, June), Integrating Ethics Into A Project Management Course Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11357
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