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At the Center

Capturing the lively discussions, presentations, and other events that make up the daily activities of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

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  •  Trust Project Haiku Twitter Contest

    Monday, Sep. 22, 2014 3:18 PM

    Fake or fact...what makes news trustworthy? How do you tell journalism from promotional content and public relations? How do you decide you can act on what you’ve seen, heard or read -- because you know it’s accurate, independent, complete and fair? Journalism makes a basic pledge to society: to serve public debate and involvement with a truthful, intelligent and comprehensive account of ideas and events. With fresh, exciting news enterprises and technologies now in play, journalism has a powerful opportunity to engage anew with its foundational principles.

    What is The Trust Project?

    The Trust Project explores how journalism can stand out from the media crowd and inspire trustworthiness, and is an initiative of the Executive Roundtable on Digital Journalism Ethics at the Ethics Center. The news executives, entrepreneurs, technology and digital media leaders who make up the roundtable share ideas, network and brainstorm solutions to some of journalism’s most pressing problems. We are examining models that suggest how to earn trust, such as Wikipedia and academic publishing. And we’re taking advantage of our location at the heart of Silicon Valley to imagine technology that can bake the evidence of trustworthy reporting –such as accuracy, transparency and inclusion –plainly into news practices, tools and platforms.

    How Do I Enter?

    Follow @journethics. Tweet a haiku by October 10 explaining the factors in a news story or news site that tell you it’s worth your trust, and you may win a $50 prize. A jury of editors will choose the best one.

    What Is a Haiku?

    A haiku poem traditionally is 3 lines, with 5 syllables in the first line, 7 in the second, and 5 in the third, adding up to no more than 17 syllables in all. Typically, the haiku starts with an observation or situation, then ends with a revelation or moment of awareness. For this contest, we will interpret the form loosely! To read some examples of haiku written by traditional masters, see

    Who Can Enter?

    All are welcome to enter. Use slashes to indicate the ends of lines (/) and include #trustworthynews and @journethics to make sure your entry is considered. Reminder: your tweet must be no longer than 140 characters. Multiple entries are fine, but must be posted on separate days. Please tweet from one account only.

    Contact Info and Join our Facebook Group

    For more information, contact Sally Lehrman, senior fellow for Journalism Ethics at the Ethics Center, Attention all those interested in journalism ethics, please join our Facebook Group, "Digital Journalism Ethics Roundtable."

  •  Ethical Dimensions of the Vatican Synod on the Family

    Tuesday, Sep. 16, 2014 3:00 PM

    Starting October 5, Catholic bishops from around the world will meet at the Vatican to scrutinize the Church’s pastoral approach to families. Pope Francis stirred up the Church when he called for the Synod to take place. Our panel will help us understand the energy behind what is happening in Rome and where this all might lead. Key ethical questions to be discussed include marriage, conscience, and natural law morality. Key theological issues will include God’s mercy; the relationship of pope and bishops; and the admittance to communion of divorced and remarried Catholics.

    A panel discussion by Santa Clara University faculty Paul Crowley, SJ, Lisa Fullam, Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University,
    and Sally Vance-Trembath.

     Join us to Live Tweet this event! Follow @scuethics #synod

  •  What Is Compassion?

    Tuesday, Sep. 9, 2014 11:51 AM

    William Prior, professor emeritus, Santa Clara University Philosophy Department, explores Compassion. While many of us use the term "compassion," we often don't share an understanding of what it fully means. Prior will discuss the more precise meaning of "compassion" as it's understood in the Western philosophical tradition. His research and teaching interests include ancient philosophy, ethical theory, the history of skepticism, and the philosophy of Wittgenstein. His publications include Unity and Development in Plato's Metaphysics (Open Court, 1985), Virtue and Knowledge (Routledge, 1991) and numerous articles. He has edited Socrates: Critical Assessments (Routledge, 1996, 4 v.) He is working on a book on the problem of the historical Socrates.

    Event and Live tweeting on Twitter: #compassion

  •  Business Ethics MOOCS Launch August 18

    Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014 2:12 PM

    On August 18th, the Ethics Center is relaunching two free Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) to the public. Already, over 3,000 executives, professors and students have enrolled, and we invite you to join them. The MOOCs are hosted on the platform and are taught by Kirk O. Hanson, longtime professor of business ethics at Stanford Graduate School of Business and Santa Clara University.
    Registration is now open


    Explores the nature of ethics, its role in a business career, and how to make practical ethical decisions.

    Examines how managers and executives can create and sustain an ethical culture.

    3 Hours of Business Ethics Training Each Week for 4 Weeks:
    Each course is organized to take no more than 2-3 hours per week, and the course is designed to be completed in 4 weeks. You can take the courses anytime during the period they are open.

    Online Activities on Business Ethics:
    Each week you will have 2 or 3 short lectures to watch. Afterwards, you will have 3 related activities: a case discussion on a real business scenario, a short exercise, and a quiz. The final project for each course is an ethical analysis, and peer reviews of other students' analyses.

    New! Incentives for Course Finishers

    • Letter of Completion: Letter of completion from the Ethics Center
    • Badge: Official "badge" to highlight your success, for display on websites, socia media, LinkedIn Profiles, etc.
    • VIP LinkedIn Group: A special invitate to join our closed MOOC Alumni Group on LinkedIn, featuring networking opportunities, discussions, and more.
    • Opportunity to participate in our SMAP (social media ambassadors program). If you're on Twitter, first Follow the Ethics Center (@mcaenews), and tweet about the course as you go through it, using the hashtag #MarkkulaMOOC. The most frequent tweeter by November 7 will win a $50 Amazon gift card. 
      Stay tuned for more details!

    Contact Patrick Coutermarsh at for questions or further information.



  •  2014 Hackworth Fellows in Engineering Ethics

    Monday, Aug. 4, 2014 2:58 PM

    The incoming Hackworth Engineering Ethics Fellows will develop case studies on engineering ethics based on the experience of Santa Clara University alumni in the engineering field. Their work will be a similar model to the business ethics case studies here. The fellowships are made possible by a gift from Joan and late Michael Hackworth.

    Clare Bartlett

    Clare Bartlett is a bioengineering major from Centennial, CO. In her free time, she enjoys running, hiking, concerts, and Irish Dancing.

    Nabilah Deen

    Nabilah Deen is a Civil Engineering Senior from Santa Clara. She lived in the city for most of her life. Nabilah participates in several engineering clubs, and she enjoys writing, reading, and modular origami.

    Jocelyn Tan

    Jocelyn Tan, from San Jose, California, studies Electrical Engineering. In her spare time, she loves to sing, dance and play the piano. She also loves to laugh and meet new friends.

  •  Tom Reese on Pope Francis and First 500 Days

    Tuesday, Jul. 29, 2014 11:52 AM

    Father Thomas Reese, S.J., visiting scholar for the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, will present on the first 500 days of Pope Francis during the Ethics Center's "Ethics At Noon" lecture on August 14, 12-noon, New location as of 8/13

    Register Here

    Reese is senior analyst for National Catholic Reporter. He entered the Jesuits in 1962, and was ordained in 1974. He was educated at St. Louis University, the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley, and at the University of California Berkeley, where he received a Ph.D. in political science. He worked in Washington as a writer and lobbyist for tax reform from 1975 to 1978. He was an associate editor of America magazine, where he wrote on politics, economics and the Catholic church, from 1978 to 1985 and editor-in-chief from 1998 to 2005. He was a senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center from 1985 to 1998 and 2006 to 2013.

    While at Woodstock, he wrote the trilogy on the organization and politics of the church: Archbishop: Inside the Power Structure of the American Catholic Church (1989), A Flock of Shepherds: The National Conference of Catholic Bishops (1992), and Inside the Vatican: The Politics and Organization of the Catholic Church (1996). He also edited The Universal Catechism Reader (1990), an analysis of the first draft of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Episcopal Conferences: Historical, Canonical and Theological Studies (1989).

    On May 14, 2014, Father Reese was appointed by President Obama to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, an independent, bipartisan U.S. federal government commission that reviews the facts and circumstances of religious freedom violations and makes policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State, and Congress. His writings for the NCR do not necessarily reflect the views of the commission.

    Father Reese is based in Washington, DC.

    Follow Reese on Twitter: @ThomasReeseSJ .

    Event hashtag: @mcaenews  #reesepope Tweet with us!


  •  New Student Government Ethics Website

    Wednesday, Jul. 23, 2014 2:37 PM

    The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics is proud to sponsor Student Government Ethics, a new website developed by an SCU senior, Kori Lennon. Lennon, a member of Santa Clara University’s Class of 2014, developed this site during her time as a Hackworth Fellow with the Ethics Center. After spending three years on Santa Clara’s Associated Student Government, her goal was to encourage greater reflection and conversation about ethics among student government leaders.

    The site provides discussion guides and ethics cases for use in student government meetings, encouraging student leaders to consider ethical concerns and share their perspectives. Sections on Mission and Vision Statements, Codes of Ethics,and Values, encourage student leaders to develop documents that more clearly define the ethics of their organization.


  •  Welcome 2014 Hackworth Student Fellows

    Wednesday, Jul. 16, 2014 2:12 PM

    The Hackworth Fellows are Santa Clara University undergraduates who provide ethics programming for students. They can be reached at 408-554-5319, or by sending an email to The Fellowships are made possible by a gift from Joan and late Michael Hackworth. For further information about the program, click here.

    Krishan Allen

    Krishan Allen is an economics major from Emerald Hills, Calif. He will research methods of integrating ethical goals into investment practice, and aims to explain how students can attain both social and financial returns within their investment portfolios. He enjoys playing basketball, reading biographies on social scientists, sailing in the San Francisco bay, and making the most of the California sun.

    Justin Fitzimmons

    Justin Fitzsimmons, a philosophy major and English minor from San Francisco, will be working on issues related to diversity and inclusion; his fellowship will be coordinated with the SCU Office for Diversity and Inclusion. Justin has studied at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and the University of Cambridge in the U.K. He is interested in Bay Area sports, philosophy, playing basketball, watching films, and reading.

     Logan Peterson

    Logan Peterson, a finance major from Scottsdale, Ariz., will focus on the Big Q, the Center's social media campaign to involve undergraduates in discussion about the ethical issues in the everyday lives of undergraduates. Logan loves city life, traveling, yoga, art, and photography. This summer, she'll be interning in the finance department at Apple as a part of the Online Store Sales team.


  •  Ann Skeet New Director of Leadership Ethics

    Tuesday, Jul. 8, 2014 12:30 PM

    The Ethics Center welcomes Ann Skeet as new director of leadership ethics. Skeet will oversee the Center's work in business and nonprofit ethics. Having already served as a strategy consultant to the Ethics Center, she will continue to play a role as a strategic advisor to the executive director.

    Skeet previously served as president of Notre Dame High School of San Jose, CEO of American Leadership Forum Silicon Valley, and vice president of marketing for the San Jose Mercury News. She is a board member of the Children's Musical Theater of San Jose, and formerly served on the boards of the Nonprofit Development Center, the Children's Discovery Museum, and Partnership for School Readiness. She was also co-chair of the board at United Way of Silicon Valley. Skeet is a graduate of Bucknell University and the Harvard Business School.

    "Silicon Valley is like a crowded, super-charged, ever-changing town square for a global community of innovators," Skeet states. "It is also a place where many struggle to achieve their personal goals in spite of all the assets and opportunities our town square has to offer.  How people and organizations here grapple with issues raised by rapid rates of change, diverse populations and unparalleled creativity has intrigued me for the half of my life I have lived and worked here."

  •  Elizabeth Connely Selected as 2014-15 Honzel Fellow

    Wednesday, Jul. 2, 2014 9:00 AM

    Elizabeth “Liz” Connelly was a 2013-14 Health Care Ethics Intern, and returns this year as the Honzel Fellow in Health Care Ethics. The youngest of five, she grew up in Spokane, Washington. She will be a senior at Santa Clara University, majoring in Theater as a non-traditional pre-med major, and minoring in Biology. During her sophomore year, she served as a Community Facilitator on campus, and will be returning as an Assistant Resident Director this year.. As the Honzel Fellow, Liz will serve as a peer mentor for the 2014-15 interns, in addition to taking on a larger project at the Center. After completing her undergraduate education, she plans on attending medical school, and looks forward to  becoming a pediatrician.