INES Appeal to Engineers and Scientists
- From: alan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx (Alan)
- Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2006 08:00 +0000 (GMT Standard Time)
This Appeal has been prepared by the INES Standing Committee on Ethical
Questions (see Newsletter 12). Feedback from the general INES membership was
included. It was endorsed by the Council in Budapest on July 2, 1995. All INES
member organisations and other relevant organisations are asked to endorse the
Appeal and tosubmit the Pledge to their members for signatures. Personal members
of INES are asked to sign the Pledge. This Appeal is part of a worldwide INES
campaign to raise ethical awareness and practice in the scientific and
Science and technology influence the social, economic and political development
of civilization throughout the world. In many ways science and technology have
made our life easier, richer and safer. However, science and technology can be
used for destructive purposes and are key factors in the current growth economy
that is threatening the viability of the biosphere and of human societies.
In its origins, science is a search for truth about our world. Its results can
be used for good and misused for evil. Technological consequences are now so
powerful and interconnected, so sweeping in unforeseen results, that they
endanger basic requirements for sustaining life on earth. Without adherence to
generally accepted ethical standards, science and technology can damage the
future of society and life itself.
The greatest challenge of our time is to enable to all members of the world
population to live in dignity in a manner that is sustainable for humankind and
nature. In meeting this challenge science and technology - if used in the right
way - play a decisive role by providing the necessary means or by analyzing the
various consequences of human activities.
The web of humanity and life as a whole must not be endangered by vested
interests. Knowledge gives power, and power may corrupt and be used for
destructive purposes. Therefore, social structures and institutions on local,
national, regional and global levels are urgently needed to promote responsible
uses of science and technology. We appeal to engineers and scientists to respect
human rights and human dignity unconditionally.
Secrecy of scientific and technological research allows its misuse. Our vision
is a science which seeks truth in open discourse.
In the last decades several initiatives promoting ethical pledges of scientists
have been launched. The values underlying these pledges can form the foundation
of a worldwide community of responsibility among scientists and engineers. In
adherence to the UNESCO Declaration for Scientific Professionals of November
1974, we have attempted to harmonize existing pledges into the following code of
1. I acknowledge as a scientist or engineer that I have a special responsibility
for the future of humankind. I share a duty to sustain life as a whole. I
therefore pledge to reflect upon my scientific work and its possible
consequences in advance and to judge it according to ethical standards. I will
do this even though it is not possible to foresee all possible consequences and
even if I have no direct influence on them.
2. I pledge to use my knowledge and abilities for the protection and enrichment
of life. I will respect human rights, and the dignity and importance of all
forms of life in their interconnectedness. I am aware that curiosity and
pressure to succeed may lead me into conflict with that objective. If there are
indications that my work could pose severe threats to human life or to the
environment, I will abstain until appropriate assessment and precautionary
actions have been taken. If necessary and appropriate, I will inform the public.
3. I pledge not to take part in the development and production of weapons of
mass destruction and of weapons that are banned by international conventions.
Aware that even conventional arms can contribute to mass destruction, I will
support political efforts to bring arms production, arms trade, and the transfer
of military technology under strict international control.
4. I pledge to be truthful and to subject the assumptions, methods, findings and
goals of my work, including possible impacts on humanity and on the environment,
to open and critical discussion. To the best of my ability I shall contribute to
public understanding of science. I shall support public participation in a
critical discussion of the funding priorities and uses of science and
technology. I will carefully consider the arguments from such discussions which
question my work or its impact.
5. I pledge to support the open publication and discussion of scientific
research. Since the results of science ultimately belong to humankind, I will
conscientiously consider my participation in secret research projects that serve
military or economic interests. I will not participate in secret research
projects if I conclude that society will be injured thereby. Should I decide to
participate in any secret research, I will continuously reflect upon its
implications for society and the environment.
6. I pledge to enhance the awareness of ethical principles and the resulting
obligations among scientists and engineers. I will join fellow scientists and
others willing to take responsibility. I will support those who might experience
professional disadvantages in attempting to live up to the princi ples of this
pledge. I will support the establishment and the work of institutions that
enable scientists to exercise their responsibilities more effectively according
to this pledge.
7. I pledge to support research projects, whether in basic or applied science,
that contribute to the solution of vital problems of humankind, including
poverty, violations of human rights, armed conflicts and environmental
8. I acknowledge my duty to present and future generations, and pledge that the
fulfilment of this duty will not be influenced by material advantages or
political, national or economic loyalties.
The above text incorporates material and ideas from the following declarations :
* The Mount Carmel Declaration on Technology and Moral Responsibility (
* The Biologists Pledge (MIT, 1987)
* Hippocratic Oath for Scientists (Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, (1987)
* The Buenos Aires Oath (Buenos Aires, 1988)
* The Uppsala Code of Ethics for Scientists (Uppsala, 1984)
* Hippocratic Oath for Scientists, Engineers and Executives (Inst. for
Social Inventions, 1987)
* Scientists Pledge Not to Take Part in Military-Directed Research (SANA,
* Appeal to Scientists (Wittenberg, 1989)
* A Pledge for Scientists (Berlin, 1984)
* The Toronto Resolution (Toronto, 1991)
We see these declarations as a part of a wider movement which has expressed
itself in particular in the Declaration of a Global Ethic of the Parliament of
the World's Religions (Chicago, 1993) and in the Trieste Declaration of Human
Duties (Trieste, 1994).
If you wish to endorse the pledge, send your signature together with your
address, name of institution or place of work, phone, fax and email contact
Centre for Research Ethics, attn: Prof. Stellan Welin, Brogatan 4, S-41301,
Einstein Quotes on Peace & War
?Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.?
? Imagination is more important than knowledge.?
? I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV
will be fought with sticks and stones.?
? Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that
goes by the name of patriotism -- how passionately I hate them!?
? The release of atom power has changed everything except our way of
thinking...the solution to this problem lies in the heart of mankind. If only I
had known, I should have become a watchmaker.?
? He who joyfully marches to music rank and file, has already earned my
contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal
cord would surely suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away
with at once. Heroism at command, how violently I hate all this, how despicable
and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base
an action. It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing
but an act of murder.?
? We must inoculate our children against militarism, by educating them in the
spirit of pacifism... Our schoolbooks glorify war and conceal its horrors. They
indoctrinate children with hatred. I would teach peace rather than war, love
rather than hate.?
? Concern for man himself and his fate must always be the chief interest of all
technical endeavors... In order that the creations of our mind shall be a
blessing and not a curse to mankind. Never forget this in the midst of your
diagrams and equations.?
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