Institute for Technology Assessment and  Systems Analysis (ITAS)

Research group “Philosophy of Engineering, Technology Assessment, and Science” (PHILETAS)

In the research group we use philosophy to advance our understanding of how engineering and science shape our world.

Engineering and science advance at rapid pace. They do not only produce new knowledge or artifacts. In fact, also the ways in which this knowledge is generated are changing. Computer simulations, for example, have drastically affected scientific and engineering practices. As a consequence, traditional quality criteria that distinguish science from pseudoscience, that distinguish good from bad engineering practice may not apply anymore or, at least, may be regarded as too restrictive. Our research aims to foster the development of new epistemic criteria.

Our research resides right at the interface between epistemology and (applied) ethics. The research group’s goal is to reach an integrated understanding of epistemic and ethical aspects in engineering and science that incorporates different perspectives such as the ones of applied ethics, (virtue) epistemology, and philosophy of science.

The work of the research group is often interdisciplinary and carried out in collaborations with scientists and engineers.