< Methods

Ethical check



Norms and values differ between various people and societies. Make sure your design and development decisions do not lead to conflicts with certain norms and values.


Investigate which decisions could lead to ethical dilemmas and explore the possible views of people from diverse backgrounds. This will provide information about the alternatives you can choose from and base your decision upon.


  • Someone with expertise in relevant norms and values.
  • Ethical codes or standards defined by the companies or professions you work for (e.g. for doctors).
  • An ethical dilemma solving strategy (e.g. black-and-white decision strategy or whistleblowing).

In practice

Ethics are becoming increasingly important for IT companies, especially for high-risk sectors (e.g. medicine, robotics, public information systems) and in situations where sensitive personal data is stored.

Phase(s) of use

In the following project phase(s) ethical check can be used:

  • Problem definition
  • Evaluation