Santa Clara University

Benson Memorial Center

Ethics at Noon

Sep 30, 2013
noon - 12:00 a.m.
Vari Hall, The Wiegand Center
Cost : Free

Robot Morality: Can a Machine Have a Conscience?

Markkula Center for Applied Ethics ; Commonwealth Club of Silicon Valley

Can we outsource morality to a robot? This isn't just a question for a sci-fi movie.  It's a question that arises from rapid advances in the field of robotics. Engineers, for instance, have tried to program robots to make moral decisions, particularly when the stakes are high. George Lucas, of the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, will address this topic, particularly as it pertains to the military's increasing reliance on these robots. 

Lucas is Class of 1984 Distinguished Chair in Ethics in the Vice Admiral James B. Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership at the United States Naval Academy (Annapolis), and Professor of Ethics and Public Policy at the Graduate School of Public Policy at the Naval Postgraduate School (Monterey, CA). He has taught at Georgetown University, Emory University, Randolph-Macon College, the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, and served as Philosophy Department Chairman at the University of Santa Clara in California. He has received research fellowships from the Fulbright Commission and the American Council of Learned Societies, and has served three times (in 1986, 1990, and 2004) as director of National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institutes for College and University Faculty. A Summa cum Laude graduate in Physics from the College of William and Mary, he is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Omicron Delta Kappa, and received the Sigma Xi Research Award in 1971 for his work in intermediate energy particle physics, published in The Physical Review (1973). Professor Lucas received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from Northwestern University in 1978. Lucas is the author of five books, more than forty journal articles, translations, and book reviews, and has also edited eight book-length collections of articles in philosophy and ethics.

We are fortunate to present this program in part through the generosity of the Project on Conscience in Roman Catholic Thought, funded by Phyllis and Mike Shea.

Co-sponsored by The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and The Commonwealth Club of California, Silicon Valley.

More Information
David DeCosse
Ethics at Noon
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