Opinion: Data science needs a code of ethics

In a column for the Harvard Business Review, Columbia University’s Kaiser Fung discusses the recent spate of scandals — from Volkswagen to Ashley Madison — and how, generally, top management takes the fall. However, he writes, “none of the dubious activities could have happened without the active participation of technical teams,” adding, “Besides engineers, software developers and product managers, the burgeoning community of data scientists are also complicit in developing the concepts, algorithms and software to enable the deception.” The data science profession is expanding at such a rapid rate, Fung points out, “that few workers are thinking about the ethical implications of their everyday actions.” Fung argues that one solution involves on-boarding training to cover the ethics of data use.Full Story

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