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Missouri University of Science & Technology



Kathleen Sheppard

Director, Center for Science, Technology, and Society, Associate Professor, History and Political Science



Casey Canfield

Assistant Professor, Engineering Management and Systems Engineering



At Missouri S&T, we have been working to help students and faculty critically assess the ethical, political, and societal implications of new and existing technologies. The Center for Science, Technology, and Society (CSTS) is a university-wide hub for interdisciplinary conversations across campus and beyond (see attachments). This group organized a symposium on Biomedical Humanities in collaboration with the Center for Biomedical Research in 2018, hosted the 41st Annual Humanities and Technology Association meeting in 2019, and hosted an NSF-funded national symposium on the “Futures of STS on Engineering Campuses” in 2021. In 2023, we will host a symposium on the topic of “Technology and Good Living,” with keynote speakers Jeremy Greene (Johns Hopkins; author of The Doctor Who Wasn’t There: Technology, History, and the Limits of Telehealth) and Andrew Deener (U Connecticut; author of The Problem with Feeding Cities).

S&T has a reputation for experiential learning, which is a graduation requirement. We have developed two new undergraduate certificates “Technology, Philosophy, and Ethical Futures” (see attachments) and “Science, Technology, and Society” as well as an undergraduate minor and certificate in “Sustainability”. There is also a minor in “Latin American Studies for Technical Applications” to support Engineers Without Borders (see attachments). In November 2022, CSTS will host our first student research symposium. Participating in PIT-UN would increase student engagement in these conversations.

Joining PIT-UN will support the newly created Kummer Institute and Kummer College of Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Economic Development (see attachments). The goal is to make S&T a leader in integrating technological solutions into educational and social research efforts. For example, 400-500 Kummer Vanguard Scholars participated in discussions on social responsibility, such as the ethical considerations of genome editing (led by David Westenberg in Biological Science).

Lastly, faculty have related research and existing collaborations with current PIT-UN members. For example Casey Canfield (Engineering Management & Systems Engineering) is collaborating with faculty at Worcester Polytechnic Institute to address challenges using wireless networks to expand rural broadband access (see attachments). There is active research on trust in human-AI teams by Daniel Shank (Psychological Science) and Don Wunsch (Electrical and Computer Engineering). Shane Epting (Philosophy) researches transportation, infrastructure, and urban futures (author of The Morality of Urban Mobility: Technology and Philosophy of the City). Fateme Rezaei (Chemical and Biochemical Engineering) is developing carbon capture technology to decarbonize the cement industry. The PIT-UN networking would be invaluable to improve the impact and relevance of research.