ethix derives its existence from a fascination with the rapid changes of our time. The lab for innovation ethics provides a structure that enables a dialog about the opportunities and risks that these changes bring to our society.
Delphine considers the constant search for underlying reasons in private life, at work and at university as one of the most exciting adventures in life. “Why do we do something? And is that how it should be?” are her favorite critical inquiries. She holds the belief that we can only find answers to these questions through dialogue. Because of that, she’s all the more committed to contributing to the creation of spaces and formats in which this dialogue can take place. Originally, as a child, her dream was to become a diplomat. Nowadays, she arbitrates between ideas and people in the areas of ethics, technology and innovation rather than the classical diplomatic field. This is despite having already embarked on the diplomatic path with her Bachelor's degree in International Relations. But thanks to a Master's degree in political philosophy and business ethics, she has again moved closer to answering her “why”-questions and can follow this passion splendidly as part of the ethix crew. Delphine likes to spark dialogue on political issues in the area of migration and can often be found on hikes and ski tours somewhere in the Swiss Alps.
Johan is guided by his deep-rooted belief that the right answer is never found by working alone, but always through the exchange of different viewpoints and the interaction of diverse knowledge. When he began his philosophy degree, he did not expect that he would devote his time to jurisprudence as well. Today, he is committed to bringing the two disciplines together, with his particular passion being the search for philosophy within the law. In this context, the question of values and the question ‘why’ crop up again and again, and this impels him to seek debate everywhere and to take ethical topics into the public sphere, in community halls and the meeting rooms of far-flung restaurants. His aim in these engagements is to set up spaces and well-laid tables in readiness for real discussions, in which the arguments of all those who participate are carried forward into a shared debate. In the ethics lab, Johan is concerned with innovation, but he also works energetically on the issues of migration, integration and international politics. Occasionally, he hears his partner and two children say jokingly: “Papa’s job is holding drinks receptions and chatting with people.” And they are not entirely wrong.
Early on in life, Jean-Daniel was transplanted from the edge of the city to the edge of the woods, resulting in a long journey to school that offered him ample opportunity to practice the art of examining ideas thoroughly. Even at that time, however, he was struck by the experience that engaging in this alone is less productive and exciting than doing so together with others. Time and again, his parents had to track him down at friends who lived somewhere along the way. Many years later, working as a bike courier in the city of Geneva, he discovered that contrary to certain fears, analog technology and human strength is not necessarily suppressed by digital technology, and in fact we should aspire to a productive interaction between them. Spurred on by many years of academic discussion on topics of political and medical ethics, and strengthened by several years of work in institutional science policy, the question of the social implications of innovation came up repeatedly. Because one thing’s for sure: innovation is always dealing with the world of tomorrow. And as the father of two daughters who will live out their lives in tomorrow’s world, he wants to play an active role in shaping it. This is why he his heart is not only with his family, but also in the local politics of Zurich – because in many respects cities are laboratories, where innovation find a way to shape how we live together.
Florian wants to work towards creating a world that empowers people and eliminates inequalities. He sees innovation as a tool which can help sentient beings in overcoming obstacles and flourishing liberally. For him, social progress is paramount. And it’s the yardstick by which innovation must be measured. This critical approach doesn’t run against his deep-rooted enthusiasm for technology. Already at a young age, he programmed games and learning tools on his calculator. And in the early days of the Internet, he experimented with home-made websites. In his philosophy studies he dedicated himself to the fundamental nature of thinking and self-consciousness. His journalistic work since then deals with the opportunities and dangers of artificial intelligence, blockchain and other future technologies. He considers ethics as a question of collective dialogue. And he strives towards promoting such an exchange at ethix by creating the necessary platforms and conditions.
ethix aims to encourage active participation from all those who are interested in the ethics of innovation. This is why ethix wants to build up a network of people who work in the field of innovation ethics. In this way, ethix hopes initially to bring together numerous specialists who deal with these questions in Switzerland, to form a unique multidisciplinary network in order that the expertise gathered can be made available to interested groups.
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ethix is an association under Swiss law. ethix has been made possible thanks to support from Engagement Migros, the development fund of the Migros Group.
Furthermore, ethix is financed through collaboration with partners from the private sector, foundations and public institutions.
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What we tell about us
Press release launch ethix (June 7, 2018):
French / German