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Toward Implementing Quantifiable Social Justice Metrics in the Design Process

[+] Author Affiliations
Douglas L. Van Bossuyt, Jered Dean

Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO

Paper No. DETC2016-60189, pp. V02AT03A055; 9 pages
  • ASME 2016 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 2A: 42nd Design Automation Conference
  • Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, August 21–24, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5010-7
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME


The recent increased popularity in teaching social justice in an engineering context has revealed issues related to implementing social justice criteria in a design process. Recent experiences with undergraduate engineering students from a variety of disciplines at the Colorado School of Mines indicate that quantifying the six social justice criteria may aid in the understanding and acceptance of social justice in the design process. This paper presents our efforts toward quantifying the social justice criteria and implementing that quantification into the design process as a set of metrics that can be tracked and potentially used as part of a design space exploration or optimization effort. While the implications of quantifying and using social justice criteria as part of the design process may at first seem ripe for misuse or misunderstanding, we have found our students more receptive of social justice as an integral part of engineering design when presented in the proposed quantified manner. Much work remains to be done to fully integrate social justice into the design process. The initial efforts to more strongly link social justice with the design process and findings of that effort are presented in this paper and indicate that this is a promising area of further research.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Topics: Design



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