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apr 2018

Message from the Editor
Heather Love, Editor, IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT) Newsletter
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This issue of the SSIT newsletter brings you the official announcement of the 2018 IEEE SSIT Carl Barus Award for Outstanding Service in the Public Interest recipient, and I am excited to report that the winner will be speaking at the November 2018 IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS) conference! Read on to find out more, and to review this month's roster of conference and publication opportunities.

I invite submissions for future newsletters. To announce an event, news item, volunteer opportunity, CFP, and award notice, or other article, please contact me at: Heather.Love@usd.edu.

Submissions for the May 2018 newsletter are due by 20 April 2018.



photo of Philip Koopman
2018 IEEE SSIT Carl Barus Award Announced
Submitted by Bradley Kjell, SSIT Awards Chair

The IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology is pleased to announce that Dr. Philip Koopman has been awarded the 2018 IEEE-SSIT Carl Barus Award for Outstanding Service in the Public Interest. The citation of the award reads: "For uncovering major automotive software defects causing unintended acceleration, and despite attacks, publicizing and successfully testifying about its dangers."

Dr. Koopman is an associate professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. His research interests include self-driving car safety, dependable embedded systems, and embedded systems security. His investigations into automotive throttle control computer systems revealed safety-critical design defects. This work should inform not only future designers of safety-critical software for automobiles but also all computer-based system designers.

The Barus Award is bestowed to an individual or group who has acted within the field of interest of the IEEE to protect the health, safety or welfare of the public, despite risk to their career and professional reputation. More information about the award is on our website.

The award will be presented during SSIT's annual conference, ISTAS, which takes place 13-14 November 2018 in Washington, DC, USA. Dr. Koopman will be one of the speakers at the conference.



The following upcoming conferences should be of interest to many SSIT members:

13th Annual IST-Africa Week 2018
8-11 May 2018, Southern Africa


Supported by the European Commission and African Union Commission, IST-Africa 2018 is the thirteenth in an annual series of Ministerial-level Technology Research, Innovation and Sustainable Development Conferences.

IST-Africa provides a platform in Africa to strengthen ICT-enabled Innovation, Science and Technology related policy dialogues within Africa and between Africa, Europe and the rest of the world, as well as Sustainable Development, Research and Innovation Cooperation and Community Building. It also provides an opportunity to identify potential partners for future research and innovation cooperation under Horizon 2020. IST-Africa is a unique community that brings together cross-disciplinary stakeholders from public, private, education and research, and societal sectors with end user communities focused on ICT and STI Research and Innovation.

Thematic areas include: eHealth/mHealth; Technology-enhanced Learning; eAgriculture/mAgriculture; eInfrastructures and NRENs; Energy; Next Generation Computing (Big Data, Cloud Computing, Future Internet, Internet of Things); eGovernment; Content Technologies (Languages, Digital Preservation); Cyber Security; Collaborative Open Innovation and ICT-enabled Entrepreneurship; Sustainable Development including ICT4D and Societal Implications of Technology.

For more information, please contact Secretariat@IST-Africa.org.



Sixth Annual Governance of Emerging Technologies and Science (GETS) Conference
16-18 May, 2018, Tempe, AZ, USA

The Sixth Annual Conference on Governance of Emerging Technologies and Science (GETS): Law, Policy and Ethics is premised on the belief that there is much to be learned and shared from and across the governance experience for various emerging technologies.

The conference will consist of plenary and session presentations and discussions on regulatory, governance, legal, policy, social and ethical aspects of emerging technologies, including (but not limited to): nanotechnology, synthetic biology, gene editing, biotechnology, genomics, personalized medicine, digital health, human enhancement technologies, blockchain, cryptocurrencies, data analytics, telecommunications, information technologies, surveillance technologies, technology and privacy, cybersecurity, geoengineering, neuroscience, military technologies, artificial intelligence, algorithms, autonomous cars, and robotics.

Keynote speakers include:
  • Larry Downes, co-author of Big Bang Disruption: Strategy in the Age of Devastating Innovation
  • Danielle Keats Citron, Morton and Sophia Macht Professor of Law, University of Maryland Carey School of Law
  • Eric Kochi, Co-Founder, UNICEF Innovation



Society for Philosophy of Science in Practice (SPSP) Seventh Biennial Conference
29 June-2 July 2018, Ghent, Belgium

The Society for Philosophy of Science in Practice (SPSP) is an interdisciplinary community of scholars who approach the philosophy of science with a focus on scientific practice and the practical uses of scientific knowledge. For further details on our objectives, read our mission statement.

The SPSP conference will be held at the University of Ghent and provides a broad forum for scholars committed to making detailed and systematic studies of scientific practices - neither dismissing concerns about truth and rationality, nor ignoring contextual and pragmatic factors. The conference aims at cutting through traditional disciplinary barriers and developing novel approaches. We welcome contributions from not only philosophers of science, but also philosophers working in epistemology and ethics, as well as the philosophy of engineering, technology, medicine, agriculture, and other practical fields. Additionally, we welcome contributions from historians and sociologists of science, pure and applied scientists, and any others with an interest in philosophical questions regarding scientific practice.

Keynote speakers at the 2018 conference include:
  • William Bechtel, University of California at San Diego
  • Sabina Leonelli, University of Exeter
  • Maarten van Dyck, University of Ghent
  • Alison Wylie, University of British Columbia

SPSP 2017-18 Organizing Committee:
  • Chiara Ambrosio, University College, London
  • Rachel Ankeny, University of Adelaide
  • Justin Biddle, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Till Grüne-Yanoff, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm
  • Sabina Leonelli, University of Exeter
  • Matthew Lund, Rowan University
  • Joseph Rouse, Wesleyan University



2018 IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS)
13-14 November 2018, Washington, DC, USA


SSIT invites you to attend and participate in ISTAS 2018, a multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary forum for engineers, policy makers, entrepreneurs, philosophers, researchers, social scientists, technologists, and polymaths to collaborate, exchange experiences, and discuss the social implications of technology. The 2018 conference theme is “Technology, Ethics, and Policy.” For the latest updates, visit the ISTAS website.

We welcome proposals for papers, panel and workshop sessions focused on the relationship between technology and social issues ranging from the economic and ethical to the cultural, and environmental; in particular, we invite submissions that engage with the following topics:
  • The Social Implications of Technology as they relate to SSIT's Five Pillars:
    • Sustainable Development
    • Ethics/Human Values
    • Universal Access
    • Societal Impacts
    • Protecting the Planet
  • Intersections between the social implications of technology and:
    • Privacy and security of information (vs. national and homeland security)
    • Net neutrality (fast-access internet legislation)
    • Big data, e-Government
    • Impact of technology and information on decision making
    • Human genome editing (e.g., Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)) ethics, neurotechnology/big brain
    • Internet of Things (IoT)
    • Blockchain everything - what does it mean?
    • Open data, open government - social implications of open data
Papers accepted for the Conference Proceedings will be submitted for publication in IEEE Xplore, with some papers shortlisted for publication in a special issue of IEEE Technology and Society Magazine. These articles must be revised to be substantially different to the original paper appearing in IEEE Xplore.

Important Dates:
Panel, Tutorial and Workshop proposal deadline: 18 May 2018
Paper submission deadline (max 5000 Words): 18 May 2018
Accept/Reject notification date for proposed papers: 25 June 2018



Publish your Ethical Dilemma

The IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology has partnered with the IEEE Life Members Committee (LMC) to publish accounts of Society members' experiences grappling with ethical dilemmas in professional contexts. If you have an experience that involved navigating an ethical dilemma, consider sharing it with your colleagues through the SSIT or LMC newsletters.

A joint SSIT/LMC committee will vet all initial submissions, and authors will work with the editors of the two publications to finalize their submissions. Accepted Ethical Dilemma articles will be published simultaneously in the June and December issues of both newsletters.

Article submissions must be between 300 and 500 words in Microsoft Word format. The IEEE Legal Department requires that all articles be fully sanitized to protect the privacy of people and organizations.

Read an example of a previously published ethical dilemma, John Impagliazzo's story, from our June 2017 newsletter.

Submit manuscripts to Stacey Waters, IEEE Project Manager, at s.waters@ieee.org.


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