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Let's put ethical tech into practice.

Malmö, Sweden on May 21

Tickets

Digital tech should be developed in more responsible ways: more trust, less trickery; more happiness, less addiction. There is a gap, however, between this theoretical consensus and putting it in practice. We want to close this gap.

Program

We believe in patterns & practices over products. We believe in implementable ideas that drive change over theory. You'll, therefore, come out equipped with:

  1. rigorous frameworks for building responsible tech
  2. ways to pitch ethical approaches to your clients, bosses, and colleagues
  3. the ability to identify users’ values and build environments that support them

The first tools for digital ethics have emerged. At Mind the Gaps, you get to learn these tools. We will also discuss the solutions, how you experience them, and create a forum to help shape their evolution. Come join the exchange!

Each keynote will be focused on making ethical approach to design and product development applicable. There will be plenty of space for panels and discussions, too.

09:00

Welcome

09:10

Ethical Tech - A Psychologist's Perspective | Alexander Steinhart (ThoughtWorks)

Let's come to the same level of understanding. We'll focus on the issues of the past years, what has been done so far, and practical ethics 101.

Alexander Steinhart, Product Strategist at ThoughtWorks

Alexander Steinhart lives and works in Berlin and has a unique background in psychology as well as technology. He co-founded the post-tech startup ( OFFTIME ) (exit), one of the first initiatives in the field of digital well-being and technology that protects our minds, which solutions are adopted now by Apple, Google, and the likes. Currently, he serves ThoughtWorks as a consultant to deliver technology to address their clients' toughest challenges, while seeking to revolutionize the IT industry and create positive social change. His special interest is in putting humans in the loop again and realigning technology with humanity's best interests.

Let's come to the same level of understanding. We'll focus on the issues of the past years, what has been done so far, and practical ethics 101.

Alexander Steinhart, Product Strategist at ThoughtWorks

Alexander Steinhart lives and works in Berlin and has a unique background in psychology as well as technology. He co-founded the post-tech startup ( OFFTIME ) (exit), one of the first initiatives in the field of digital well-being and technology that protects our minds, which solutions are adopted now by Apple, Google, and the likes. Currently, he serves ThoughtWorks as a consultant to deliver technology to address their clients' toughest challenges, while seeking to revolutionize the IT industry and create positive social change. His special interest is in putting humans in the loop again and realigning technology with humanity's best interests.

09:40

Designing Ethically | Katherine Zhou (IBM)

We’ve heard it again and again: the tech industry desperately needs an ethical reinvention. Join Kat Zhou, the creator of <Design Ethically> and product designer at IBM, as she explores how we can integrate ethics into our practice. This is a dive into how we can reimagine a new design process that prioritizes choosing the right problems, forecasting for harmful consequences, and monitoring products to ensure they stay on track.

In this talk, we will discuss how to apply an “intent/results” paradigm to design, what constitutes as ethical or not, and what designers can do to pave the way for ethics in tech. Kat will also share her takeaways from introducing ethical design to teams at and outside of IBM. As designers, we’re in a powerful position to lead the ethical tech movement because our craft is grounded in human-centered insights. And the time to lead is now.

Katherine Zhou, Product Designer at IBM

Kat Zhou is a product designer at IBM Security and the creator of the <Design Ethically> project, which explores how product teams can implement ethical practices in their day-to-day process. She currently collaborates with IBM's Artificial Intelligence Design team to pilot methodology with product teams at IBM. Her hobbies include creating podcast artwork for Hi-Phi Nation, volunteering with Front Steps, and teaching first graders design thinking.

We’ve heard it again and again: the tech industry desperately needs an ethical reinvention. Join Kat Zhou, the creator of <Design Ethically> and product designer at IBM, as she explores how we can integrate ethics into our practice. This is a dive into how we can reimagine a new design process that prioritizes choosing the right problems, forecasting for harmful consequences, and monitoring products to ensure they stay on track.

In this talk, we will discuss how to apply an “intent/results” paradigm to design, what constitutes as ethical or not, and what designers can do to pave the way for ethics in tech. Kat will also share her takeaways from introducing ethical design to teams at and outside of IBM. As designers, we’re in a powerful position to lead the ethical tech movement because our craft is grounded in human-centered insights. And the time to lead is now.

Katherine Zhou, Product Designer at IBM

Kat Zhou is a product designer at IBM Security and the creator of the <Design Ethically> project, which explores how product teams can implement ethical practices in their day-to-day process. She currently collaborates with IBM's Artificial Intelligence Design team to pilot methodology with product teams at IBM. Her hobbies include creating podcast artwork for Hi-Phi Nation, volunteering with Front Steps, and teaching first graders design thinking.

10:10

Break

10:30

Against Design Ethics: Why Your Feel-Good Team Exercises Won't Stop the Fall of Democracy Due to Tech | Joe Edelman

Human Systems teaches an approach centered around human values. Let's look at survey and data methods, redesigning systems to support people's values, and metrics at scale.

You will learn how to advocate for values-based group processes, social systems, and designs. You'll learn to fight for what's right. You will be introduced to tactics to get buy-in — both inside and outside of organizations — for the systems that humanity needs to face global challenges.

Joe Edelman, Designer, Philosopher; Teacher at Human Systems

I'm a philosopher, social scientist, and designer. I believe the current political moment demands a change in the way human systems (social networks, political systems, organizations) are designed; and making this change means having a clearer understanding of people (and of how they live and cooperate).

I work on questions like "how people sort out what's important to them" or "how a person's choices are shaped by the array of social games at hand."

Human Systems teaches an approach centered around human values. Let's look at survey and data methods, redesigning systems to support people's values, and metrics at scale.

You will learn how to advocate for values-based group processes, social systems, and designs. You'll learn to fight for what's right. You will be introduced to tactics to get buy-in — both inside and outside of organizations — for the systems that humanity needs to face global challenges.

Joe Edelman, Designer, Philosopher; Teacher at Human Systems

I'm a philosopher, social scientist, and designer. I believe the current political moment demands a change in the way human systems (social networks, political systems, organizations) are designed; and making this change means having a clearer understanding of people (and of how they live and cooperate).

I work on questions like "how people sort out what's important to them" or "how a person's choices are shaped by the array of social games at hand."

11:20

Break

11.40

Discussion panel | Alexander, Katherine, Joe

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite some time.

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite some time.

12:10

Food for body, not just thought

13:00

Backing Ethics with Research | Annelie Berner (CIID)

Technology has a far-reaching impact on our lives: As much as it offers potential for us to improve our social, environmental, and economic conditions, it also has the power to impact those areas negatively. How could we empower and support developers and designers to engage in ethical reflection to prevent such scenarios?

VIRT-EU aims to foster ethical thinking and develop actionable tools to encourage reflection on the relationship between technological innovation and societal concerns. Annelie Berner, Interaction Design Researcher at CIID, will introduce you to the tools VIRT-EU is developing, from ethical frameworks, to processes and tools, to speculative design.

Annelie Berner, Interaction Design Researcher & Project Lead at CIID

Annelie creates and teaches and speaks about experimental interaction design, ethics and data, futurescaping and data visualization. Currently, she works and teaches as an Interaction Design Researcher at CIID.

Technology has a far-reaching impact on our lives: As much as it offers potential for us to improve our social, environmental, and economic conditions, it also has the power to impact those areas negatively. How could we empower and support developers and designers to engage in ethical reflection to prevent such scenarios?

VIRT-EU aims to foster ethical thinking and develop actionable tools to encourage reflection on the relationship between technological innovation and societal concerns. Annelie Berner, Interaction Design Researcher at CIID, will introduce you to the tools VIRT-EU is developing, from ethical frameworks, to processes and tools, to speculative design.

Annelie Berner, Interaction Design Researcher & Project Lead at CIID

Annelie creates and teaches and speaks about experimental interaction design, ethics and data, futurescaping and data visualization. Currently, she works and teaches as an Interaction Design Researcher at CIID.

13:35

Break

13:50

Human Systems: Value-Centered Design | Nathan Vanderpool

You will understand the concepts and vocabulary to use when analyzing your own, and others’, personal values. You will learn to speak plainly about your own personal values and the values of others. You will come to understand when, where, and how you decided to be the way you are. For many people this means confronting unsettling questions. It can be tough. It’s worth it.

Nathan Vanderpool, Philosopher, Sociologist, Game Creator; Teacher at Human Systems

You will understand the concepts and vocabulary to use when analyzing your own, and others’, personal values. You will learn to speak plainly about your own personal values and the values of others. You will come to understand when, where, and how you decided to be the way you are. For many people this means confronting unsettling questions. It can be tough. It’s worth it.

Nathan Vanderpool, Philosopher, Sociologist, Game Creator; Teacher at Human Systems

14:50

Fika

15.20

Discussion panel | Annelie, Nathan

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite some time.

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite some time.

15:40

Break out sessions — Let's get hands-on! | TBA

Let's roll up your sleeves and dive deeper into one of the topics or approaches that is closest to your heart.

Let's roll up your sleeves and dive deeper into one of the topics or approaches that is closest to your heart.

16:40

Break

16:50

Discussion | Everyone

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite a while.

Raise your hands, concerns, and questions regarding the ephemeral good and bad! They will be answered and discussed by people that have been thinking about, and translating the theory into practice, for quite a while.

17:17

Wrap up

Human Systems Workshop (May 22)

Human Systems develops games and analysis techniques to help you change norms, fix broken systems, and recover meaning.

In this full-day workshop, Joe Edelman and Nathan Vanderpool will start by walking you through their Fundamentals, teaching you a new way to think about human motivation. You’ll learn to name values and norms as precisely as most people can name goals and feelings, and you’ll use this newfound articulacy to see where values and norms come from. This will help you see how to create, or re-envision, social spaces so they support people’s ability to have meaningful, purposeful experiences.

You will continue by exploring survey and data methods to collect this information at scale and by defining the right kinds of metrics to measure what's important. Applying these new skills, you learn to redesign systems that support human values.

Find out more here, or shoot us an email at info@mindthegaps.io.

Tickets

Mind the Gaps is a one-day conference that will take place on Tuesday, May 21.

Venue

Our venue is Studio, downtown Malmö. That's southern Sweden.

Let's keep in touch

Join our community Slack, or let's connect over email. We promise to treat your address the way we treat our pets: feed it only highest quality foods, and share it with no one.

Business value

You might be thinking that ethical behaviour is costly. We are confident the opposite is true — ethics pays1.

Digital ethics has been identified as a top strategic trend for 20192. This is no coincidence. The abuse of trust manifesting itself in the form of data breaches, exploiting our natural behaviours, or bombarding kids with mindless nonsense has been going on for too long.

Since trust is key to brand survial3, even huge players such as Google and Apple are taking some real, introspective strides4. When the motto "move fast and break things" starts breaking society, there's no other way.

Claiming that ethics and profit are mutually exclusive is, in other words, like trying to convince a gymnast they can either be flexible or strong. One needs to support the other and without both in place, long-term success is unfeasible.

Sources: 1. Ethical Systems, 2. Forbes, 3. The Verge, 4. Tech Crunch

About

We've been organising Øredev, the biggest dev conference in the region, for 15 years. Having been in the tech space for quite some time, we see a dire need for a hands-on approach to ethical decision-making.

Apart from the three humans above 👆, this "we" also includes three fluffy dogs.

Rather special, and enormous, thanks goes to Alexander Steinhart. He has pointed us to the right people and in the right directions, and has helped us immensely in the program committee. Thanks in heapfuls, man!

We would love to hear your suggestions, thoughts, or anything else that might be on your mind at info@mindthegaps.io.