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Hartman to address complex relationship with technology

March  05, 2014

Dr. Laura Hartman, assistant professor of religion, will deliver a lecture entitled “Technology, Ethics and the Environment” at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 18, in Room 102 of the Hanson Hall of Science.

Dr. Laura Hartman

Dr. Hartman believes people tend to have a love/hate relationship with technology, saying, “We benefit from lifesaving and labor-saving technologies daily, and yet we also worry that our technology is making us less intelligent, less healthy and less engaged in the world.”

An ethicist herself, she continued, “Ethicists of many persuasions counsel limiting technology — drawing lines between good and bad uses. But can we truly see the lines and enforce the limits when technology also changes the way we think about the world?”

Dr. Hartman acknowledges there are no clear answers, but she will share her own efforts to wrestle with the issues and “try to find wise, healthy attitudes toward technology and its environmental impact.”

She added, “I hope that audiences will be inspired and challenged by the conversation.”

Dr. Hartman has done extensive research in the area of environmental ethics and has published a book and several articles on topics related to environmental ethics. Her current research involves a study of transportation ethics, focusing particular attention on the environmental impact of the transportation decisions that people make.

The free, on-campus lecture is sponsored by the Augustana Center for the Study of Ethics, and it is part of an effort to facilitate discussions in the Quad-Cities community. If local groups are interested in hosting a discussion on a topic related to ethics, please contact Dr. Hartman at (309) 794-7345 or laurahartman@augustana.edu.

Sam Schlouch
Director, Public Relations and Arts Promotion
(309) 794-7833
samschlouch@augustana.edu