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Ethical aspects

The use of body scanners at airports requires a balance between preserving the rights of the individual and the safety of the aircraft and its passengers. This balance has been analysed and reported from an ethical perspective.

Although the main focus of the CONSORTIS project is the technological development of a full body scanner, it is accompanied by ethical research on the morality of security and its technological provision. Ethical reasoning as part of a research project must be understood as an instrument to design and produce technology in a responsible way, i.e. a way that sees the broader implications of technology and its role in society. Ethical reasoning addresses fundamental human and societal concerns and lays down the foundations for individual and societal good lives. However, it is by its nature theoretical and must be understood accordingly.

The primary objective is to examine and justify a value basis that can serve as guideline to the normative and thus most needed features of CONSORTIS’s final product (and other relevant products of this kind). Emphasis is laid on the idea of justifying the values that any liberal and humane security policy must require of technology aimed at establishing security. These values are applied to the case of using full body scanners. In this project, an ethical aspects checklist has been created to guide the design and implementation of the technology developed within CONSORTIS.