1st Edition

Ethics and Sustainability in Digital Cultures

Edited By Thomas Taro Lennerfors, Kiyoshi Murata Copyright 2024
    292 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Digital technologies, now ubiquitous around the world, can promote positive values, as well as support those that are less socially acceptable. To better understand such technologies’ impact on ethics and sustainability, this book situates digital technologies within a cultural context, arguing that the technology is received differently in different cultural contexts. The book contains chapters on state-of-the-art digital technologies such as artificial intelligence from various countries including Japan and Sweden to highlight the multifarious ways in how ethical and sustainability issues are being manifested in certain cultural contexts.

    The book contributes to furthering understandings on the similarities and differences between digital technology implementations in different cultures, promoting a cross-cultural dialogue on desired values and how they are promoted or downplayed by such technologies. The book is divided into two parts: the former focuses on how individuals relate to new digital technologies, and the latter focuses on those who develop digital technologies.

    The book targets scholars, businesspeople and policymakers interested in the interconnection between digital technologies, ethics and sustainability from various cultural viewpoints. It provides new case studies on a range of digital technologies and discussions about digital technology implementations in cultural contexts.

    1. Ethics and sustainability in digital cultures: A prolegomena

    Thomas Taro Lennerfors & Kiyoshi Murata

    Part I: Practicing Ethics and Sustainability in Digital Cultures

    2. Artificial intelligence and the sustainability of thinking: How AI may destroy us, or help us

    Iordanis Kavathatzopoulos

    3. What is the problem to which AI chatbots are the solution? AI ethics through Don Ihde’s embodiment, hermeneutic, alterity, and background relationships

    Mikael Laaksoharju, Thomas Taro Lennerfors, Anders Persson and Lars Oestreicher

    4. A dumb spy? Ethical aspects of voice assistant technologies

    Anisa Aini Arifin & Thomas Taro Lennerfors

    5. Truth and reality in the digital lifeworld: Departure from reductionism

    Makoto Nakada, Iordanis Kavathatzopoulos, & Ryoko Asai

    6. Telework for a sustainable society: Lessons from the remote work boom during the COVID-19 epidemic in Japan

    Hiroshi Koga, Akio Sato, Sachiko Yanagihara

    7. The ethics of body modification: Transhumanism in Japan

    Kiyoshi Murata, Yohko Orito, Andrew A. Adams, Mario Arias-Oliva, & Yasunori Fukuta

    Part II: Creating Ethical and Sustainable Digital Cultures

    8. The ascent of memetic movements: Social media, Levinasian ethics and the global spread of Q-anon conspiracy theories

    Rickard Grassman, Ryoko Asai, & Matthew Davis

    9. Cultural frictions in the ethics of smartphone games: The example of Pokémon GO in Japan and Poland

    Akira Ide & Paweł Pachciarek

    10. From strangers to neighbours: How the sharing economy can help building and maintaining local communities

    Per Fors & Tina Ringenson

    11. How does the digitally driven sharing economy promote cultural sustainability? The case of a musical instrument-sharing business in Japan

    Yohko Orito & Takashi Majima

    12. A block in the chain of sustainability? On blockchain technology and its economic, social, and environmental impact

    Matthew Davis, Rickard Grassman, Vanessa Bracamonte & Maki Sato

    13. Using bits to consume less – consuming less when using bits: A European perspective

    Norberto Patrignani


    Thomas Taro Lennerfors is Professor and Head of the Division of Industrial Engineering and Management at Uppsala University, Sweden.

    Kiyoshi Murata is Director of the Centre for Business Information Ethics and Professor of MIS at the School of Commerce, Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan.