Carnegie Council Launches the Ethics Accelerator

May 16, 2023

Empowering ethics in response to rapidly evolving challenges in technology and public policies

Today, new ethical questions are emerging at an exponential rate. Society faces significant challenges in the realm of international affairs—from the impact of rapidly evolving technologies such as artificial intelligence to the rise of autocrats and accelerating climate change. Too often, new public policies, technologies, and products are developed, deployed, and co-opted with haste by actors who view ethics as an encumbrance rather than a requisite.

In response, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs is pleased to announce the launch of the Carnegie Ethics Accelerator—a new kind of incubator designed to empower ethics in the face of swiftly evolving challenges in technology and public policies. Each Accelerator will tap into the convening power of Carnegie Council to assemble a diverse community of experts and practitioners who will collaboratively and ambitiously push the discourse forward on a complex ethical question.

With generous support from the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation, the inaugural series of Ethics Accelerators will take place over the next 12 months in New York City and focus on critical questions at the intersection of ethics and emerging technology. Led by Carnegie Council Senior Fellow Arthur Holland Michel, the first Accelerator will examine ethical questions regarding the adoption of software tools for correlating and fusing surveillance data from a growing web of sources.

"Crisis by crisis, we face accelerating growth in global challenges that face humanity. Emerging technologies that reflect the best of human ingenuity and innovation might provide critical new responses to these challenges—but only if built for public purpose instead of maximizing profits," said Vilas Dhar, president of the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation. "Carnegie Council brings a deep history and commitment to ethical decision-making—experience and wisdom that is critical as we develop and deploy new tools. The Patrick J. McGovern Foundation is delighted to support the launch of the Ethics Accelerator to advance practices that center community interests, pose difficult questions about core values, and shape our best possible human-centered, tech-enabled future."

The Ethics Accelerator will seek to generate publicly available instruments and principles that policymakers and practitioners can immediately leverage and deploy. As the initiative expands to tackle additional novel issues within international affairs, so will Carnegie Council’s library of available Ethics Accelerator assets, including ethical frameworks, multimedia educational materials, and governance blueprints.

"The Accelerator is Carnegie Council’s answer to the need to be nimble in response to fast-moving issues in applied ethics," said Joel Rosenthal, president of Carnegie Council. "This new initiative enables us to convene and publish quickly to bring ethical issues into focus in real time, as debates are unfolding. The team and I are delighted to be working with the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation to meet this critical moment."

About Carnegie Council

Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs is an independent nonprofit that works to empower ethics by identifying and addressing the most critical ethical issues of today and tomorrow. Founded by Andrew Carnegie over a century ago, we set the global ethical agenda and work for an ethical future by convening leading experts, producing agenda-setting resources, and catalyzing the creation of ethical solutions to global problems. Join us in using the power of ethics to build a better world. Carnegie Council is a nonprofit 501(c) (3) institution. For more information, please visit, subscribe to "Carnegie Council" wherever you get your podcasts, and engage with us on LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Kevin Maloney
[email protected]
Director of Communications
Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs

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