7.1 Introduction to Value Sensitive Design
In the following lecture by Prof. Jeroen van den Hoven, we will cover briefly how Value Sensitive Design arose as a concept. When computers first came into use in the 50s and 60s, their technical features were of most interest. However, as they became more embedded in some of the largest organizations, many realised that the social and behavioural changes that computing as a paradigm brought was of much significance too. It was this realisation of the embedded values on computer systems that was later generalised to all technologies.
Why use VSD?
One of the seminal articles illustrating values embedded in technology would be Langdon Winner’s “Do Artifacts Have Politics?” (This is a highly recommended article, you can read it here.) Over time, VSD has come to represent a conscious effort to design technologies in such a way that they preserve human dignity, justice, welfare and human rights.
With respect to Responsible Innovation, VSD offers a framework for stakeholders to express their values, and try to design operational criteria in a way that respects those values. Since it is visual and explicit, all parties can freely debate and negotiate, facilitating a consensus. From experience in policy studies, it is also found that consensus-building through participation is an important process that increases the acceptance of the final outcome.
Responsible Innovation by TU Delft OpenCourseWare is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://ocw.tudelft.nl/courses/responsible-innovation/.