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Let Conscience Be Your Guide: Moral Design

Someone recently said, "All good design is moral design, and only moral design can ever be good."

As designers we spend our time thinking about things like usefulness, desirability, learnability, or gamification, and are rarely allowed to go up to that highest level and question the moral value of our designs. Questions like, what do our designs encourage in people? What view of the good life does our work encourage? Do our designs cause people to live better or become more human?

In this session we'll ask those questions. We'll start by looking at the implicit moral framework existent in popular digital products today, consider better moral frameworks, and talk about the implications. This talk will be equal parts philosophy and design; while it will be moral, it will contain no moralizing.

Additional Supporting Materials

Questions Answered

  1. What does it look like to design from a specific moral framework?
  2. What is the implicit morality most of us unconsciously bring to our work today?
  3. What do our designs encourage in people?
  4. What view of the good life does our work encourage, and how can we consciously promote one view over another?
  5. Do our designs cause people to live better or become more human, and how could we get better at this?

Speakers

Organizer

RJ Owen EffectiveUI


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