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Markkula Center for Applied Ethics
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Voting for Ethics

A Guide for U.S. Voters

“Voting for Ethics” is a non-partisan, how-to guide for U.S. voters. It will help you identify the hallmarks of an ethical candidate and make a more informed decision -- whether for your local school board or the 2020 presidential election.

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Featured Ethics Spotlights

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The Ethics of Going Back to School in a Pandemic

As students across the country start a new school year, many are participating online only, while others are attending in person, in the classroom – with some already closing down again after new outbreak clusters form. Ethics Center staff and other SCU scholars address some of the key ethical dilemmas surrounding this critical decision.

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Ethics and Systemic Racism

The killings of several Black Americans by law enforcement over the last several months has shinned a light on the systemic nature of racism in our country. Ethics Center staff and scholars analyze the associated ethical dilemmas.

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COVID-19: Ethics, Health and Moving Forward

As businesses, schools, families and individuals transition from shelter-in-place to the new normal, critical questions must be considered and addressed before our economy can be revived. Ethics Center staff have compiled the following resources; including video interviews with business and non-profit leaders, panel discussions, and actionable tools; all designed to help us move forward.

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The California Wildfires

The world has been experiencing worsening wildfire conditions for decades, and in California the situation is particularly bad. The Ethics Center staff and other scholars address some of the key ethical issues surrounding these disasters.

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    A Guide for Nonprofit Organizations

    Nonprofit organizations rely on charitable gifts, but often lack guidance on how to navigate gifts from controversial donors. This guide offers practical and ethical considerations for nonprofit organizations that face increasing scrutiny for gift acceptance decisions.

    Read the Guide

    Ethical Perspectives

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    How Should Journalists Report a Scientific Study?

    A three-step process and a framework of questions to make ethical reporting decisions, with recent convalescent plasma reporting as an example.

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    Join Us for Outstanding Online Events: The “AI for Social Impact and Equity” Series

    A series of 5 outstanding public webinars, and related AI ethics materials for college courses

    Demonstrators take a knee while the names of people who died in police custody are read during a Black Lives Matter protest.
    Because I am White, my Privilege Allows me to be Silent—but Virtue Ethics Does not

    Ethics, and virtue in particular, tells us that for white people to eradicate systemic racism, they must demand more of themselves and others, particularly those in power.

      Teaching Note: Interview of Theranos Whistleblower, Tyler Shultz

      This teaching module for business ethics, leadership and management courses includes two videos, homework assignments, and class discussion, all designed to spark conversation about ethical issues associated with whistleblowers and corporate governance.

      View the Teaching Module

      Center News

      Former Hackworth Grant Recipient Jeremy Herb ‘08 Wins Emmy

      Herb is CNN national security reporter covering politics.

      DeCosse Presents Ethics Center Orientation

      “ConnectU” provided dynamic online orientation for 1,200 new students.

      Social Sector Ethics Launches “Ethical Gift Acceptance for Nonprofit Organizations”

      New resources, cases, and training opportunities available to all nonprofit organizations.

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        Evaluating Culture for Ethics

        Our Culture Self-Assessment Practice recommends approaches to evaluating culture for ethics within companies and other types of organizations. The materials are primarily for members of an organization’s leadership team, including human resources and legal, but designed to engage a cross-section of leaders from various disciplines.

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        Media Commentary

        Dr. Robert Redfield Jr., director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is photographed at the agency's headquarters in Atlanta, Thursday, June 28, 2018
        Opinion: Ignore CDC’s new, unscientific COVID-19 testing guidelines

        Margaret R. McLean, Ph.D., associate director at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics published in The Mercury News.

        Google's chief executive Sundar Pichai addresses the audience during an event on artificial intelligence at the Square in Brussels, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020.
        Google Offers to Help Others With the Tricky Ethics of AI

        Brian Green, director of Technology Ethics, quoted in WIRED.

        Sheriff Alex Villanueva
        L.A. County CEO to Receive $1.5 Million and Security in Settlement over Alleged Harassment by Sheriff

        Ann Skeet, senior director of Leadership Ethics, quoted in the Los Angeles Times.

          Like Birds, Ethical Issues Are Everywhere...

          ...often difficult to spot, but noticed by those in search of them.

          The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University exists to help people see, understand, and work through ethical problems.

          As an introduction to thinking ethically, we have created a framework for ethical decision making.

          Learn About Our Framework

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