Articles  |    |  May 13, 2019

Moving from value sensitive design to virtuous practice design

Article by Wessel Reijers & Bert Gordijn.
Published in Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society.


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to develop a critique of value sensitive design (VSD) and to propose an alternative approach that does not depart from a heuristic of value(s), but from virtue ethics, called virtuous practice design (VPD).

Design/methodology/approach: This paper develops a philosophical argument, draws from a philosophical method (i.e. virtue ethics) and applies this method to a particular case study that draws from a narrative interview.

Findings: In this paper, authors show how an approach that takes virtue instead of value as the central notion for aiming at a design that is sensitive to ethical concerns can be fruitful both in theory and in practice.

Originality/value: This paper presents the first attempt to ground an approach aimed at ethical technology design on the tradition of virtue ethics. As such, it presents VPD as a potentially fruitful alternative to VSD.