The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Engineering  book cover
1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Engineering

ISBN 9780367689919
Published August 1, 2022 by Routledge
792 Pages 47 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Engineering has always been a part of human life but has only recently become the subject matter of systematic philosophical inquiry. The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Engineering presents the state-of-the-art of this field and lays a foundation for shaping future conversations within it. With a broad scholarly scope and 55 chapters contributed by both established experts and fresh voices in the field, the Handbook provides valuable insights into this dynamic and fast-growing field. The volume focuses on central issues and debates, established themes, and new developments in: 

    • Foundational perspectives 
    • Engineering reasoning 
    • Ontology 
    • Engineering design processes 
    • Engineering activities and methods 
    • Values in engineering 
    • Responsibilities in engineering practice 
    • Reimagining engineering 

The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Engineering will be of value for both students and active researchers in philosophy of engineering and in cognate fields (philosophy of technology, philosophy of design). It is also intended for engineers working both inside and outside of academia who would like to gain a more fundamental understanding of their particular professional field. 

The increasing development of new technologies, such as autonomous vehicles, and new interdisciplinary fields, such as human-computer interaction, calls not only for philosophical inquiry but also for engineers and philosophers to work in collaboration with one another. At the same time, the demands on engineers to respond to the challenges of world health, climate change, poverty, and other so-called "wicked problems" have also been on the rise. These factors, together with the fact that a host of questions concerning the processes by which technologies are developed have arisen, make the current Handbook a timely and valuable publication.

Table of Contents

Diane P. Michelfelder and Neelke Doorn

Part I: Foundational Perspectives

  1. What Is Engineering?
    Carl Mitcham
  2. A Brief History of Engineering
    Jennifer Karns Alexander
  3. Western Philosophical Approaches and Engineering
    Glen Miller
  4. Eastern Philosophical Approaches and Engineering
    Glen Miller, Xiaowei (Tom) Wang, Satya Sundar Sethy, Fujiki Atsushi
  5. What Is Engineering Science?
    Sven Ove Hansson
  6. Scientific Methodology in the Engineering Sciences
    Mieke Boon
  7. Part II: Engineering Reasoning

  8. Engineering Design and the Quest for Optimality
    Maarten Franssen
  9. Prescriptive Engineering Knowledge
    Sjoerd Zwart
  10. Engineering as Art and the Art of Engineering
    Lara Schrijver
  11. Creativity and Discovery in Engineering
    David H. Cropley
  12. Uncertainty
    William M. Bulleit
  13. Scenarios
    Christian Dieckhoff and Armin Grunwald
  14. Systems Engineering as Engineering Philosophy
    Usman Akeel and Sarah Bell
  15. Assessing Provenance and Bias in Big Data
    Brent Mittelstadt and Jan Kwakkel
  16. Part III: Ontology

  17. Artifacts
    Beth Preston
  18. Engineering Objects
    Wybo Houkes
  19. Use Plans
    Auke Pols
  20. Function in Engineering
    Boris Eisenbart and Kilian Gericke
  21. Emergence in Engineering
    Peter Simons
  22. Towards an Ontology of Innovation: On the New, the Political-Economic Dimension and the Intrinsic Risks Involved in Innovation Processes
    Vincent Blok
  23. Part IV: Engineering Design Processes

  24. Engineering Design
    Peter Kroes
  25. Values and Design
    Ibo Van de Poel
  26. Design Methods and Validation
    Sabine Ammon
  27. Human-Centred Design and its Inherent Ethical Qualities
    Marc Steen
  28. Sustainable Design
    Steven A. Moore
  29. Maintenance
    Mark Thomas Young
  30. Part V: Engineering Activities and Methods

  31. Measurement
    Lara Huber
  32. Models in Engineering and Design: Modeling Relations and Directions of Fit
    Michael Poznic
  33. Scale Modeling
    Susan G. Sterrett
  34. Computer Simulations
    Hildrun Lampe
  35. Experimentation
    Viola Schiaffonati
  36. On Verification and Validation in Engineering
    Francien Dechesne and Tijn Borghuis
  37. Part VI: Values in Engineering

  38. Values in Risk and Safety Assessment
    Niklas Möller
  39. Engineering and Sustainability: Control and Care in Unfoldings of Modernity
    Andy Stirling
  40. The Role of Resilience in Engineering
    Neelke Doorn
  41. Trust in Engineering
    Philip J. Nickel
  42. Aesthetics
    Stefan Koller
  43. Health
    Marianne Boenink
  44. Philosophy of Security Engineering
    Wolter Pieters
  45. Part VII: Responsibilities in Engineering Practice

  46. Ethical Considerations in Engineering
    Wade L. Robison
  47. Autonomy in Engineering
    Eugene Schlossberger
  48. Standards in Engineering
    Paul B. Thompson
  49. Professional Codes of Ethics
    Michael Davis
  50. Responsibilities to the Public—Professional Engineering Societies
    Joseph Herkert and Jason Borenstein
  51. Engineering as a Political Practice
    Govert Valkenburg
  52. Global Engineering Ethics
    Pak-Hang Wong
  53. Engineering Practice and Engineering Policy: The Narrative Form of Engineering Policy Advice
    Natasha McCarthy
  54. Part VIII: Reimagining Engineering

  55. Feminist Engineering and Gender
    Donna Riley
  56. Socially Responsible Engineering
    Jessica M. Smith and Juan C. Lucena
  57. Engineering and Social Justice
    Carolyn Baillie
  58. Engineering and Environmental Justice
    Benjamin R. Cohen
  59. Beyond Traditional Engineering: Green, Humanitarian, Social Justice, and Omnium Approaches
    George D. Catalano
  60. Engineering and Contemporary Continental Philosophy of Technology
    Diane P. Michelfelder
  61. Engineering Practice from the Perspective of Methodical Constructivism and Culturalism
    Michael Funk and Albrecht Fritzsche
  62. Reimagining the Future of Engineering
    Neelke Doorn, Diane P. Michelfelder, Elise Barrella, Terry Bristol, Francien Dechesne, Albrecht Fritzsche, Gearold Johnson, Michael Poznic, Wade L. Robison, Barbara Sain, Taylor Stone, Tonatiuh Rodriguez-Nikl, Steven Umbrello, Pieter E. Vermaas, Richard L. Wilson

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Diane P. Michelfelder is Professor of Philosophy at Macalester College, USA. Along with philosopher Natasha McCarthy and engineer David E. Goldberg, she edited Philosophy and Engineering: Reflections on Practice, Principles, and Process (2013). Her most recent book is Philosophy and Engineering: Exploring Boundaries, Expanding Connections, edited with Byron Newberry and Qin Zhu (2016). 

Neelke Doorn is Distinguished Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Professor of "Ethics of Water Engineering" at Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands. Recent book publications include co-editing the volumes Responsible Innovation: Innovative Solutions for Global Issues (2014) and Early Engagement and New Technologies: Opening up the Laboratory (2013). She is also the author of Water Ethics: An Introduction (2020).  


"This is an amazing collection! Not only is it the first book of its kind, defining the territory of the new and rapidly developing field of philosophy of engineering, it contains chapters by a truly international and multidisciplinary group of scholars. The compilation is rich and exciting, and very timely."
Deborah G. Johnson, Anne Shirley Carter Olsson Professor of Applied Ethics Emeritus, University of Virginia

"Neelke Doorn and Diane Michelfelder have curated an impressive body of works that turn the clarifying and critical lens of philosophy upon engineering. This volume begins to reveal the depths of an essential human enterprise, one that philosophers for too long treated as a superficial craft rather than what it is: a creative endeavor of social imagination in action."
Shannon Vallor, Baillie Gifford Chair in the Ethics of Data and Artificial Intelligence, University of Edinburgh

"Traditional philosophy of technology largely ignores engineers and engineering, but The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Engineering takes engineers, their methods, their responsibilities, and their future seriously with a world-class collection of spot-on papers sure to stimulate your reflection. Beg, borrow, or steal this volume and start treating the humans and human activity of engineering in a philosophically serious way, today."
David E. Goldberg, Professor Emeritus, University of Illinois