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Episode Info: Cennydd Bowles is a London-based digital product designer and futurist, with almost two decades of consulting experience working with some of the largest and most influential brands in the world. Cennydd has earned a reputation as a trusted guide, helping companies navigate complex issues related to design, technology, and ethics. He’s also the author of Future Ethics, a book which outlines key ethical principles and methods for constructing a fairer future. In this episode, Cennydd and I explore the role that ethics plays in design and innovation, and why so many companies today—in Silicon Valley and beyond—are failing to recognize the human element of their technological pursuits. Cennydd offers his unique perspective, along with some practical tips that technologists can use to design with greater mindfulness and consideration for others. In our chat, we covered topics from Cennydd’s book and expertise including: Why there is growing resentment towards the tech industry and the reason all companies and innovators need to pay attention to ethics The importance of framing so that teams look beyond the creation of an “ethical product / solution” and out towards a better society and future The role that diversity plays in ethics and the reason why homogenous teams working in isolation can be dangerous for an organization and society Cennydd’s “front-page test,” “designated dissenter,” and other actionable ethics tips that innovators and data product teams can apply starting today Navigating the gray areas of ethics and how large companies handle them The unfortunate consequences that arise when data product teams are complacent The fallacy that data is neutral—and why there is no such thing as “raw” data Why stakeholders must take part in ethics conversations Resources and Links: Cennydd Bowles Future Ethics (book) Design for Real Life  The Trouble with Bias Twitter: @cennydd Quotes from Today’s Episode “There ought to be a clearer relationship between innovation and its social impacts.” — Cennydd “I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t think there was a strong upside to technology, or if I didn’t think it couldn’t advance the species.” — Cennydd “I think as our power has grown, we have failed to use that power responsibly, and so it’s absolutely fair that we be held to account for those mistakes.” — Cennydd “I like to assume most creators and data people are trying to do good work. They’re not trying to do ethically wrong things. They just lack the experience or tools and methods to design with intent.” — Brian “Ethics is about discussion and it’s about decisions; it’s not about abstract theory.” — Cennydd “I have seen many times diversity act as an ethical early warning system [where] people who firmly believe the solution they’re about to put out into the world is, if not flawless, pretty damn close.” — Cennydd “The ethical questions around the misapplicatio...
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