Ethics of Data and Analytics : Concepts and Cases book cover
1st Edition

Ethics of Data and Analytics
Concepts and Cases

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after April 6, 2022
ISBN 9781032062938
April 6, 2022 Forthcoming by Auerbach Publications
424 Pages 40 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

The ethics of data and analytics, in many ways, is no different than any endeavor to find the ‘right’ answer. When a business chooses a supplier, funds a new product, or hires an employee, managers are making decisions with moral implications. The decisions in business, like all decisions, have a moral component in that people can benefit or be harmed, rules are followed or broken, people are treated fairly or not, and rights are enabled or diminished. However, data analytics introduces wrinkles or moral hurdles in how to think about ethics. Questions of accountability, privacy, surveillance, bias, and power stretch standard tools to examine whether a decision is good, ethical, or just. Dealing with these questions requires different frameworks to understand what is wrong and what could be better.

The Ethics of Data and Analytics does not search for a definitive answer or to ban all technology in favor of human decision-making. The text takes a more skeptical, ironic approach to current answers and concepts while identifying and having solidarity with others. Applying this to the endeavor to understand the ethics of data and analytics, the text emphasizes finding multiple ethical approaches as ways to engage with current problems to find better solutions rather than prioritizing one set of concepts or theories. The book works through cases to understand those marginalized by data analytics programs as well those empowered by them.

Three themes run throughout the book. First, data analytics programs are value-laden in that technologies create moral consequences, reinforce or undercut ethical principles, and enable or diminish rights and dignity. This places an additional focus on the role of developers in their incorporation of values in the design of data analytics programs. Second, design is critical. In the majority of the cases examined the purpose is to improve the design and development of data analytics programs. Third, data analytics, AI, and machine learning is about power. The discussion of power – who has it, who gets to keep it, who is marginalized – weaves throughout the chapters, theories, and cases. The book includes foundational articles and theories in the ethics of data analytics as well as engaging practical cases.

Table of Contents

1. Value-laden Biases in Data Analytics
2. Classical Ethical Theories and Data Analytics
3. Privacy and Shared Responsibility
4. Surveillance and Power
5. Purpose of Corporation and Goals of Algorithms
6. Fairness, Predictive Analytics, and Mistakes
7. Discrimination
8. Creating Outcomes and Measuring Accuracy
9. Gamification, Manipulation, and Analytics
10. Accountability for AI
11. Ethics, AI Research, and Corporations

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Kirsten Martin is the William P. and Hazel B. White Center Professor of Technology Ethics at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. A professor in the IT, Analytics, and Operations department but focus on the ethics of data and analytics, she has been teaching business ethics in a business school for 15 years and has experience writing and teaching on the ethics of data, analytics and privacy. Her research focuses on privacy, accountability, technology, algorithms, and ethics Martin is the editor of the "Technology and Business Ethics" section in the Journal of Business Ethics. She is the coauthor of a recent book on business ethics for the popular press (The Power of And) and has a popular Ted talk on privacy and data. She holds Ph.D. and MBA degrees from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business and a B.S. Engineering is from the University of Michigan.