This Article 
   
 Share 
   
 Bibliographic References 
   
 Add to: 
 
Digg
Furl
Spurl
Blink
Simpy
Google
Del.icio.us
Y!MyWeb
 
 Search 
   
Value Conflicts in Computational Modeling
July 2010 (vol. 43 no. 7)
pp. 57-63
Kenneth Fleischmann, University of Maryland, College Park
William Wallace, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy
What value conflicts influence the success of the modeling process and of models as products? Clients commission models, modelers develop models, users use models, and many other members of society are affected by models. These different groups all have different values, leading to value conflicts that influence the success of both the modeling process and of models as products. Data collection included in-depth, semi-structured interviews at three field sites: a corporate research laboratory, an academic research laboratory, and a government research laboratory. Three key value conflicts influence the success of the modeling process: timeliness versus completeness, innovation versus reliability, and honesty versus obedience. Value conflicts among different groups influence the success of models as products, including: the modelers versus their organization, the modelers versus the clients, and the clients versus the users. Thus, understanding value conflicts can help us to understand the ethical implications of models.

1. H. Nissenbaum, "How Computer Systems Embody Values," Computer, Mar. 2001, pp. 118-120.
2. K.R. Fleischmann and W.A. Wallace, "A Covenant with Transparency: Opening the Black Box of Models," Comm. ACM, May 2005, pp. 93-97.
3. K.R. Fleischmann and W.A. Wallace, "Ensuring Transparency in Computational Modeling," Comm. ACM, Mar. 2009, pp. 131-134.
4. J. Davis et al., "Simulations for Urban Planning: Designing for Human Values," Computer, Sept. 2006, pp. 66-72.
5. W. Maner, "Unique Ethical Problems in Information Technology," Computer Ethics and Professional Responsibility, T.W. Bynum, and S. Rogerson eds., Blackwell, 2005, pp. 39-59.
6. R.A. Pielke Jr., "The Role of Models in Prediction for Decision," Models in Ecosystem Science, C.D. Canham, J. Cole, and W.K. Lauenroth eds., Princeton Univ. Press, 2003, pp. 111-135.
7. S.H. Schwartz,, "Universals in the Content and Structure of Values: Theoretical Advances and Empirical Tests in 20 Countries," Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, vol. 25, 1992, pp. 1-65.
8. D.G. Johnson, "Is the Global Information Infrastructure a Democratic Technology?" Computers and Society, Sept. 1997, pp. 20-26.
9. B. Friedman, P.H. Kahn Jr.,, and A. Borning, "Value Sensitive Design and Information Systems," Human-Computer Interaction in Management Information Systems: Foundations, P. Zhang, and D. Galletta eds., M.E. Sharp, 2006, pp. 348-372.
10. B. Berenbach, and M. Broy, "Professional and Ethical Dilemmas in Software Engineering," Computer, Jan. 2009, pp. 74-80.
11. K.W. Miller and J. Voas, "Information Integrity and IT Professionals' Integrity, Intertwined," IT Professional, Nov. 2008, pp. 35-40.
12. K. Mathieson, "Making Ethics Easier," Computer, July 2008, pp. 91-93.

Index Terms:
Human values, Professional ethics, Human-centered computing
Citation:
Kenneth Fleischmann, William Wallace, "Value Conflicts in Computational Modeling," Computer, vol. 43, no. 7, pp. 57-63, July 2010, doi:10.1109/MC.2010.120
Usage of this product signifies your acceptance of the Terms of Use.