Summer Institute in Technology Ethics at Santa Clara University (SITE)

July 27, 2020 - August 7, 2020
Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, Santa Clara University

Markkula Center for Applied Ethics
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara 95053-0633
United States

This will be an accessible event, including organized related activities


  • Templeton World Charity Foundation, Inc.


University of California, San Diego
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Sonoma State University
Santa Clara University
University of Edinburgh


Sonoma State University
Santa Clara University

Topic areas

Talks at this conference

Add a talk


Accepted students and fellows will recieve a stipend to attend.

Eager for a challenging deep dive into technology ethics? The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics will host a two-week Summer Institute in Technology Ethics at Santa Clara University, with the goal of enhancing the rigor and character of moral expertise in AI and technology ethics.

Rapid developments in artificial intelligence are generating unprecedented challenges and opportunities for human flourishing, as well as a wave of urgent calls for expert guidance in the ethical use of AI and other emerging technologies. To meet these calls, the SITE project offers an intensive, interdisciplinary educational program for philosophers and technologists, guided by internationally recognized experts in technology/AI ethics.

The program will be developed and led by Professors Shannon Vallor ( and John Sullins ( Other internationally acclaimed guest faculty will add their diverse perspectives, and evening sessions will enable Institute fellows to engage with Silicon Valley professionals with direct involvement in ethical decision-making related to emerging technology.

During their two weeks at Santa Clara University, the 25 academic participants selected for the in-residence portion of the Institute will gain the capacity to develop independent research projects and curricula for rigorous introductory courses in this field.

The SITE program will also bring program participants into exchange with other stakeholders outside of academia—including policymakers and public interest advocates. These events will include public talks and panels on the ethics and morality of technology, as well as a concluding day-long public conference. Through these interactions, stakeholders with diverse expertise will inform and challenge each other, in dynamic ways, in order to advance the shared goal of developing ethical AI.

Logistics and Application Details

Participants will receive a flat stipend of $2750. On-campus housing in dormitory-style apartments will be available for a modest rate. Breakfast and lunch will be provided Monday-Friday, as well as a welcome dinner and culmination dinner, along with two local fieldtrips. SITE is committed to advancing diversity in this field and participants from underrepresented groups and communities are strongly encouraged to apply. Applicants should have a B.A., M.A., or Ph.D. in Philosophy or other equivalent coursework preparation for intensive study in applied technology ethics. Knowledge of the fundamentals of moral theory will be presupposed by the curriculum, which will be heavily discussion-based but will include relevant readings in the field to be completed by students in advance of the program. Prior coursework in related technical or social science fields should be noted in the application but is not required. Accepted participants must be eligible to travel and study in the U.S. and must be able to attend the entire program in order to receive the full stipend.

The application form asks applicants to upload the following documents:

  • Letter of interest (approx. 2 pages) articulating reasons for applying and relatedresearch interests
  • Academic CV (include a short list of any related coursework or experience)
  • Names, affiliations and contact info for 3 faculty who may be contacted for a referenceif selected for the program
  • A short writing sample on any subject (need not relate to tech ethics)

Application Timeline

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis starting on January 10, 2020 and closing on January 26, 2020. Decisions will be sent by February 17, 2020.
For questions about applying to the in-residence program, contact [email protected]; Working technologists interested in the parallel, non-residential portion of the SITE program should email [email protected] to be added to a mailing list for an announcement with program and registration details in Spring 2020.

Supporting material

Add supporting material (slides, programs, etc.)

This is a student event (e.g. a graduate conference).




January 26, 2020, 6:45pm PST

External Site

Who is attending?

2 people are attending:

Rafael Ayala
John P. Sullins

See all

Will you attend this event?

Let us know so we can notify you of any change of plan.

RSVPing on PhilEvents is not sufficient to register for this event.

Custom tags:

#Technology Ethics, #AI Ethics, #AI Ethics, #SITE