Beyond guidelines: How to do ethics in software development?

Background and Vision

Over three years, the SIMPORT project united software developers and ethicists in a collaborative Ethics by Design approach, aiming to develop applications for digital sovereignty in location-based-services. Despite the existence of numerous ethical guidelines and principles, implementing ethics in software development remains, and should remain an empirical question.

In response, our final report is rooted in the day-to-day challenges faced in SIMPORT´s interdisciplinary collaboration, where ethicists occasionally felt overlooked and developers finding ethical input abstract. Combining theoretical research on the ethics of innovation with insight from ethnographic engagement and in-depth interviews, we present our findings and recommendations. In addition, we provide some hands-on tools to spark deep ethical work in software development.

Insights and Tools