Studying social impacts of emerging military technology

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Studying social impacts of emerging military technology

July 24, 2009

Brad Allenby, a professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, has been selected to be a Stockdale Fellow for the U. S. Naval Academy Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership.

The year-long Stockdale Fellowship program brings together scholars and teachers with senior career military officers, civil servants and others to collaborate on strengthening public understanding in areas involving war, military and leadership ethics.

Allenby will investigate the social, cultural, ethical and operational implications of emerging military and national security technologies.

The result of these investigations will be published articles, lectures, and detailed research on emerging technologies and their implications.

“Many people don’t understand how important military conflict has always been to the development of new technology,” Allenby says.

He points to such technological advances as the rapidly increasing use of robots in combat situations, miniaturized surveillance mechanisms, development of “telepathic” headgear, and smart drugs that enhance cognitive function.

The Stockdale Fellowship “offers an opportunity to explore the implications of such technologies so that we can manage their effects on society rationally and ethically,” Allenby says.

Candidates for an academic Stockdale Fellowship typically are established scholars who have achieved considerable publications of their work and have gained significant teaching experience in the areas of philosophy and ethics, international relations, behavioral science, and/or public policy.

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