034.012 Technology and Ethics
This course is in all assigned curricula part of the STEOP.
This course is in at least 1 assigned curriculum part of the STEOP.

2023W, VU, 2.0h, 3.0EC, to be held in blocked form


  • Semester hours: 2.0
  • Credits: 3.0
  • Type: VU Lecture and Exercise
  • Format: Hybrid

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, students are able to...

-          Research scientific literature to a specific topic and cite used literature correctly

-          Develop coherent arguments and structure them according to academic standards

-          Provide feedback to the work of others 

-          Present a scientific topic in a given time in English (group presentation)

Subject of course

Technologies are strongly affecting the way we communicate, move, work, collaborate and so on. In recent decades, many debates have emerged regarding the potential ethical issues and challenges of new technologies. Such debates have highlighted the relationship between technology and society.

Awareness about the intricate relation between technology and society is becoming increasingly important. This course will provide students with basic insights into concepts and theories from fields like history of technology, philosophy of technology and ethics, science and technology studies (STS). Furthermore, specific attention will be paid to specific topics that are strongly debated recently, such as for instance AI Ethics or the impact of robots on the job market.

Apart from that, students will dive into chosen case studies that exhibit the relation between socio-ethical issues and technology. Students will be able to choose their own case study freely and based on their own interests, but suggestions will be provided. Examples could be: Robot and AI ethics, Public trust in biotechnology & vaccines, the depiction of technologies in Science Fiction, etc.

Finally, the course is specifically designed to be open for students from all disciplines. That is to say, even though the content of most theories that we look into originates in the Humanities and Social Sciences, the course is very much accessible to people from other disciplines and fields.

Teaching methods

-          Lecture

-          In-class discussions

-          Individual work using relevant scientific literature

-          Presentations

Mode of examination


Additional information

"This course may be taken as an elective for the Gender and Diversity Competency Supplemental Certificate. More information about the certificate can be found here."

With the certificate Gender and Diversity Competence, graduates prove their competence in the consideration of gender and diversity aspects.

A prerequisite for issuing the certificate is the completion of courses from the following list in the amount of at least 16 ECTS.

Three courses amounting to 7 ECTS must be completed; for the remaining 9 ECTS, all courses from the list "Optional Courses" can be chosen.

A list of courses can be found here.

Please E-Mail your questions to jesse.de.pagter@tuwien.ac.at.



Course dates

Fri13:00 - 16:0013.10.2023Seminarraum AE U1 - 7 Introduction & Session 1
Fri13:00 - 16:0020.10.2023Sem.R. DA grün 05 Session 2
Fri13:00 - 16:0010.11.2023Sem.R. DA grün 05 Session 3
Fri13:00 - 16:0017.11.2023Sem.R. DA grün 05 Session 4
Fri13:00 - 16:0001.12.2023Sem.R. DA grün 05 Session 5
Fri13:00 - 16:0015.12.2023Sem.R. DA grün 05 Session 6
Course is held blocked

Examination modalities

Attendance, presentation, short papers/essays

Course registration

Begin End Deregistration end
04.09.2023 09:00 11.10.2023 09:00

Registration modalities

The course is conducted as a classroom course, attendance is compulsory. Due to the size of the room, it is not possible to increase the number of participants. Admission to the course is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please come to the first session to keep your place in the course or to move up from the waiting list.


Study CodeObligationSemesterPrecon.Info
066 445 Mechanical Engineering Not specified
TRS Transferable Skills Not specified


No lecture notes are available.


  • Attendance Required!