Values, Technology, and Society

The Values, Technology, and Society Cluster (VTS) focuses on the dynamic relation between values and technology in society. As such, cluster courses will identify, describe, analyze, and evaluate values and technology in society. To become a well-educated person one must become cognizant of the nature and meaning of technology and science, and of their far-reaching effects upon values and culture. Technology is a form of cultural activity that produces and uses concepts, artifacts, and systems decisive in contemporary life which must be understood, anticipated, and critiqued. The VTS Cluster is dedicated to such education, builds on the connected learning of the Humanities Base, and helps students continue to integrate their learning across the University's various domains of knowledge.

In addressing the most urgent issues facing society today, the VTS cluster studies environmental, economic, and political systems intertwined with the scientific and technological systems, all in the context of coming to appreciate ethically appropriate developments and uses of technologies and their corresponding impact on cultures and societies worldwide.

The VTS cluster thus seeks to establish an integrative perspective in which the study of values in technology, that is, technology in its social, cultural, and moral setting can proceed in a more balanced and critical manner.

Courses in the VTS Cluster provide students with the opportunity to:

  • Examine critically the ways technology promotes, inhibits, directs, or redefines individual autonomy and social responsibility;
  • Explain how technology influences perceptions of nature and ecology;
  • Explain how the understanding of nature and ecology influences perceptions about technology;
  • Explore the relation between technology and religious faith;
  • Inquire whether reliance upon technology diminishes reliance on the divine, or whether technology can facilitate a faith commitment;
  • Develop thoughtful, ethical positions and well-considered moral principles to guide them in decisions involving values, society, and technological change;
  • Analyze the role technology plays in the establishing, transmitting, and transforming of political and economic systems;
  • Understand the role technology plays in the development of a person's self-understanding and of society's self-understanding.

Cluster Coordinator:

Riad Al-Akkad
School of Engineering
Kettering Labs, Rm 266v 937-229-2304

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