Ethics and IT – München, June 13th 2014
Prof. Dr. Julian Nida-Rümelin
The new information technologies have radically changed society, not just the way people communicate. We are in a phase of redefining communication, and the outcome is open. Will we move into a transition society where the private and public spheres are no longer seen as separate, will there be new forms of privacy gate-keeping and civil rights around information, or will the state and the corporate sector gain the upper hand? Prof. Nida-Rümelin will present philosophical and ethical considerations for debate.
Dr. Clara Mavellia
A lot of us have had our digital fingers burnt looking for a good software engineer, and things will probably stay that way until these skills are properly taught at school. Telecommunications, defence, finance, intelligence (both kinds), health care are among the many sensitive areas in today’s world which are managed by computers. At the end of the last century, and certainly by the time of the millennium bug, a global community was starting to think about how IT should be used. If we assume that responsibility is another force that actively shapes our society, then foresightful responsibility for what lies ahead – or concern, if you will – is the key to survival. The time has come to ask how we want to handle freedom and responsibilty on the Web, and to concern ourselves with activities, plans and developments in the world of IT.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome to “Cultural Entrepreneurship – Ethics and IT”, our conference in Munich on 13 June 2014!
This event offers women and men from the world of economics, politics and IT a platform to explore and debate the links between ethics and IT. Our aim is to build bridges between philosophers, entrepreneurs, and the general public, paving new roads to success for all concerned. In this interdisciplinary, intercultural context, you will have an opportunity to listen to pioneering spirits or to present your innovative company.
By coming together, all our participants will play their part in a global renaissance which combines an ethical impact with economic viability.
The conference is open to anyone interested, admission is free. We look forward to meeting you.
For full details of our terms and conditions and how to register, please click here.
Dr. Clara Mavellia
1. The Institute for Cultural Entrepreneurship
Our aim at the Institute for Cultural Entrepreneurship is to help stimulate interaction between economics and philosophy and open up new perspectives for everyone involved. It means basing profit projections on longer-term aims than quarterly reports, and an approach that goes beyond money to take on board, for example, carbon footprints, or financial models that provide creative artists with a decent livelihood. It also means fostering brilliant ideas at the interface of different sectors and disciplines (the Medici effect).
At a time when everyone is talking about ethics and every corporate website has one link to its philosophy and another for innovation, we invite the public at large to join our conferences and other activities in pursuit of Cultural Entrepreneurship, to discover and discuss ethics and humanism, and to explore the many things which entrepreneurship can achieve. Meet some of the many people with ethical, innovative business ideas in all walks of life, people who are already working towards the good life in one way or another, some of them under quite adventurous conditions, and most of them turning over a profit, too.
At these international, interdisciplinary conferences, with simultaneous interpreting into various languages, experts, students and other interested parties have the opportunity to exchange their ideas and end the day with fresh energy.
If students, trainees, and founders of start-ups, whatever their field of expertise or sector of industry, are interested in ethics, entrepreneurship, art and culture, and much more, their admission fees will be paid by companies who feel they have a social responsibility to help spread such ideas and have therefore agreed to support our event in this way.
The next conference “Cultural Entrepreneurship – Ethics and Travel” will be Held in Gothenburg on 10 September 2013.
Another of our projects aims to give literary expression to economic, environmental and political issues. It will benefit the fields in question, literature in general and, of course, readers.
We would be delighted if managers would invite artists to spend some time in their companies, tracking signs of the new things emerging around them.
And sooner or later the Porsche driver who buys organic will gravitate towards both a holistic lifestyle and a new car, becoming a more discerning consumer, promising economic and ecological rewards for the generations of today and tomorrow.
We know from game theory that, when we find ourselves caught in the prisoner’s dilemma, cooperation pays off for all sides. In the same spirit, by working towards Cultural Entrepreneurship we can contribute to a global Renaissance which makes an ethical impact and is nonetheless commercially sound.
This concept, then, has a role to play, with real depth and even a little glamour, by showing us a way out of the economic crisis and addressing the widely lamented loss of social values.
For all concerned, 20 years after the fall of the Wall (but not only in Berlin) this ultimately means a chance to shape the economy and the arts in a creative manner, in the knowledge that they are also doing something for future generations. What is a fulfilling life, of not that?
2. Freedom and justice
In a liberal democracy, neither God nor Caesar makes and enforces the law: We do, the citizens.
This is because our democracy is based on ethical principles such as freedom and justice for all, although sometimes we seem to forget that.
Understanding and personal development in politics, philosophy, literature, art, music etc. are only possible under democratic conditions. They thrive on peace, freedom and justice, as in the Ancient polis and in the Renaissance – in any society where people are equal or have the same opportunities.
2.1. Women and men
We need every man and every woman of every generation. As Aristotle would say, many people reach an age when they can and should give something back to society, fulfilling their civic duty by shaping their social and natural environment.
For a long time we have been living on borrowed resources, not just financially, but ethically and intellectually, too – Greece, after all, was the cradle of the Western world – and now it is time to tap our hidden reserves, each and every one of us in our own field and social function. Our intellectual and emotional resources are unlimited!
2.2. Philosophy and economics
At the interface of philosophy and economics, “cultural entrepreneurship” provides the perfect framework. We want nothing less than to take those hackneyed clichés, the “greedy manager” and “the destitute poet”, blend them, and then integrate the often lacking female dimension. The result will be far more rewarding for all parties.
Imagine the permutations: “the greedy poetess”, “the poetic manager”, “humanist management” …
The challenge now is to equip ourselves with information and rediscover our cognitive resources, and – with care and a little humour – to exercise pre-emptive responsibility by building a good life for ourselves and future generations.
3. Ethics in the market economy 
People have been talking about corporate culture for three decades now, although the moral sensitivity of companies and managers still leaves much to be desired. At the same time, however, we increasingly witness companies and leaders who understand that risks are not always economic or environmental, but that they can just as well be ethical, and that the latter can have a disastrous impact on a company’s success, even threaten its very survival.
It is a fact of life that morality is seen as potentially restricting a company’s profits. But that is an inaccurate assessment when we consider that companies without sound value management can even be excluded from major projects. We want ethics to be treated as an opportunity to gain a distinct profile. Ethics are a resource that should be fully mobilised for the sake of corporate success.
In order for markets and competition to deliver for real people, there has to be a robust and globally effective framework, because in a market economy prosperity does not depend on the goodwill or moral motives of the actors. At the end of the day, the principal motive is always the financial incentive, or self-interest.
But it is also a fact that a market economy without a framework, i.e. unbridled competition in the absence of law and morality, leads to an unbearable state of affairs, the one Hobbes had in mind when he wrote: “the life of man solitary, poore, nasty, brutish, and short” .
Unlike politicians and NGOs, companies can actively engage in creating a socially acceptable order within the global economy, thereby taking responsibility for the long term.
This is because, by investing in real and human capital as well as corporate culture, they are laying the foundations for sustainable yields in line with market requirements, while at the same time ensuring good profits for their shareholders; and where companies do have such policies, this is already reflected today in strong stock market prices.
However, if companies want to take part in building this incipient global order, they must be consistently transparent about what they do.
The good thing about all this is that good deeds pay off, because in the long term morality and the pursuit of profit converge.
4. Cultural Entrepreneurs
If we take a look at the economy, the financial chaos and the greed for profits of recent years, we are amazed by the reticence of creative industries and cultural entrepreneurs.
With a few shining exceptions among artists, musicians and art directors, the (sub)cultural field is still awash with many dedicated and usually poorly paid entrepreneurs performing invaluable work for the theatre, art, music, literature, history and so forth. They generously give their skills and talents, and whether they are creating something new or preserving traditions, for society as a whole the rewards are lasting. They do not seem to heed the time their efforts absorb, and they work according to their own rhythms. Many are derided for it, and some envied. Not all are successful in the financial sense. Their driving force is their passion.
They enrich their fellows with amazing insights, moving emotions and aesthetic experiences, and thanks to them reality seems better and more beautiful.
But it would be a miracle if culture was not first in line when the usual cuts begin to bite.
With cultural entrepreneurship, we not only hope to counter this attitude, but we also hope to develop financing models (e.g. an unconditional basic income) that will allow all creators of culture and cultural entrepreneurs to earn a decent livelihood.
5. The Medici effect 
Anyone operating at the intersection of disciplines and cultures can easily combine existing concepts and generate a large number of extraordinary new ideas.
The name of this phenomenon, the “Medici effect”, refers to an explosion of creativity that took place in 15th-century Italy.
The Medici were a Florentine banking dynasty who attracted creators from many different disciplines to Florence and funded their works.
Thanks to the Medici family and a few other like-minded patrons, Florence became a place where scientists, poets, philosophers, financiers, painters, sculptors and architects could come together and collaborate.
They had an opportunity to learn from each other and thus the barriers between their respective skills and expertise were broken down: Together, they created a whole new world of new ideas that was to become known as the Renaissance.
The result of this cooperation between different specialists was a creative explosion and one of the most innovative periods in human history.
Indeed, we can still feel the impact of the Medici today.
We too can create such a Medici effect, by bringing together different disciplines and cultures and identifying the interfaces which connect them.
It is not so much the Renaissance that matters here, but rather the elements that made that era possible, and how they can be used to generate extraordinary ideas – in other words, what happens when, at the intersection of different disciplines and cultures, we discover brilliant ideas that are brought to light and given life.
The most fertile soil for innovation is the intersection of many different disciplines which do not really have anything in common – and yet, when they are seen from the other’s cultural perspective, unexpected new subjects and synergies open up.
The ideas we find at this intersection are logical, but their logic cannot be grasped until we suspend our usual cognitive approach and enter into risky terrain, because creativity comes from the unknown, rather than the opposite.
Most of the achievements of recent decades have their origin in combining disciplines and expertise, from biophysics and biogenetics to computer linguistics and palliative medicine, to name but a few.
6. The Outlook for Cultural Entrepreneurship
Although the ethics of science and corporate social responsibility have been the subject of many a symposium and conference, these ideas can only be truly and sustainably brought to life if they reach pupils, students and all interested citizens.
Just as the Renaissance still affects us today, these important impulses will spread far and wide and a long way into the future, throwing up new questions of their own.
In order to discuss these, and perhaps shed light on some of them, each year the Institute for Cultural Entrepreneurship invites renowned academics and experts to the Freie Universität in Berlin to speak about ethics and the opportunities for doing good  in all disciplines, business sectors, cultural circles and artistic fields, and to explain the relevant theories. After these lectures, the audience participate through Q&A sessions.
At these events, budding founders of start-ups can find out more about the innovative potential of entrepreneurship and meet some exemplary entrepreneurs.
Finally, a selection of individuals from the business community will elaborate on their own experience of translating these theories and their own ideas into everyday commercial reality.
All in all, the (young) women and men in the audience will have a chance to explore both the theories as well as their practical application; and they will take away information about entrepreneurship to use in their own lives and careers – a seed than can germinate, blossom and eventually be passed on in turn.
Moreover, the interdisciplinary, transcultural approach offers everyone a glimpse of the good life on our planet and the personal potential he or she can tap.
Our aim is to encourage this integration and intersection of people, values and competences, and beyond this to set in motion a global Renaissance in a peaceful, free and fair world – in other words, nothing short of ecological, economic and emotional prosperity.
Dr. Clara Mavellia
Berlin, 26 October 2010
 Cf. Homann, Karl, Ethik in der Marktwirtschaft, Munich: Roman Herzog Institute 2007
 Hobbes, Thomas (1651), Leviathan, Oxford: Clarendon Press 1909
 Cf. Johansson, Frans, The Medici Effect. What Elephants & Epidemics can teach us about Innovation, Boston: Harvard Business School Press 2006
 Cf. Vossenkuhl, Wilhelm, Die Möglichkeit des Guten. Ethik im 21. Jahrhundert, Munich: C.H. Beck 2006
Andreas Butz studied IT at Saarland University, receiving his doctorate there in 1997. After a year at Columbia University (New York), followed by several years at the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence while running his own technology start-up (Eyled GmbH), he was appointed by Ludwig Maximilian University (Munich) in 2004, where he now holds the Chair in Human-Machine Interaction. In 2007 he was awarded the Alcatel-Lucent Research Prize in Technical Communication for his work in the field of human-centric intelligent environments.
Born in Cologne, in Berlin since 2001. Develops and manages companies: events, open source & consultancy. Elected and paid positions in local, German and European politics. New thinker. Board member for a Berlin football club.
Davide Gomba is a maker from Turin. He’s been tinkering with video experiments since his teenage years, discovering and falling in love with Arduino in his 20s. CEO of Officine Arduino, communicator, Arduino workshop teacher, travels around Italy promoting DIY & maker culture, digital fabrication and sharism. In his spare time he creates stories and prints toys with his son Djibril. Officine Arduino Torino is a combination of Makerspace, Fablab and an Arduino “office” dedicated to furthering development of the platform and open source hardware. Officine Arduino is born out of the experience of creating the first FabLab in Italy during an exhibition that lasted throughout 2011. We experienced the positive energy that came out of the encounter between the local community of makers, students, designers and our team based in Turin. Officina means “workshop” and in Italian it has the vintage sound of the name given to those small companies that made amazing products with limited resources and a lot of ingenuity. We wanted to see what comes out when you connect open source hardware and software, digital fabrication, maker culture, hands-on learning, open design, alternative business models, co-working and a great community. Officine Arduino is working on several Arduino projects, such as debug & testing of upcoming Arduino products, Arduino site maintenance, content development and more. Turin is a “template”: we would like to see more Officine Arduino opening around the world so that more people can hang out with us and build amazing stuff. If you have the chance, go to Turin and have fun at the Officine.
Danish, 30 years old, female entrepreneur. My main passion and motivation is bringing people together around cosy, meaningful and social experiences. Most of my ideas centre around community, product and services that bring joy. I have a BA in Performance Design and Business Studies from Roskilde University in Denmark from 2009. Since then I’ve had many different jobs and lived in New York, Thailand and now Norway, where I started my business EatinCommon.com in 2013.
Studied Medicine and Psychology in Freiburg and Erlangen before training as a neurologist and psychological psychotherapist on neurology wards at the teaching hospitals of Erlangen and Essen Universities and Munich Technical University. Additional training in specialised neurological intensive care, clinical geriatrics, clinical neuropsychology (GNP) and biofeedback therapy (DGS). A doctorate in 1980 and post-doctorate degree in 1993 culminated in a professorship in 2000. Research fields include altered brain activity in voluntary motor function and post-traumatic pain (notably headache). Has written and edited publications on headache management in practice and (for sufferers) on migraine. Regional officer of the German Migraine and Headache Society (DMKG). Since 2001 senior consultant at the Neurology Department of Bayreuth District Hospital, the teaching hospital of Erlangen/Nuremberg University. As a pain therapy specialist, he heads the hospital’s outpatient headache unit and the Bayreuth Competence Centre for the Association of Cluster Headache Self-Help Groups. Set up the Upper Franconian Centre for Outpatient Telemedicine in Bayreuth (Ozean Bay). Leads the Speech Teletherapy for Stroke Patients project with Bavarian ministry funding; currently implementing a model project on Telehealth in the Smart Home. Telehealth care in the home will not in future be confined to the sick, but will reach out to the elderly, enabling them to remain in familiar surroundings for as long as possible. Apart from ‘tele-entertainment’, ‘tele-energy’, tele-security’ etc., the smart TV in the living room will one day offer a telehealth portal for calling up a virtual medical care centre, consisting of the personal GP, specialist physician, functional therapist, home care service and pharmacist – all possible thanks to ambient assisted living (AAL) in the smart home, which draws on telematic options to preserve and enhance the quality of life.
Anne Koark is British and has been living in Germany since 1985. In April 2003 she had to register insolvency for her unlimited company that among other things supported IT enterprises in opening subsidiaries in Germany. She is the author of the book “Insolvent and nevertheless successful” (Original title: Insolvent und trotzdem erfolgreich). She holds speeches among other things on the topic of failure and was e.g. invited by the EU Commission in 2006 to speak on this topic. For more than 10 years she has been fighting for the destigmatization of insolvency, for a culture of failure and also for the facilitation of the second chance – to the benefit of all affected. For her work she has been honoured with the Lady Business Award 2004 and the Special Prize at the Great Prize for SMEs 2005 (Großer Preis des Mittelstands) from the Oskar Patzelt Stiftung.
Clara Mavellia from Milan was granted her doctorate at the Freie Universität in Berlin, where she has been working as an academic and journalist ever since. From September 2005 to April 2008 she commuted between Berlin and Munich to attend the interdisciplinary executive M.A. in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. In March 2010 she set up the Cultural Entrepreneurship Institute in Berlin to promote interaction between philosophy, economics, ethics and business. The Institute hosts international, interdisciplinary and intersectorial conferences – in 2013 Ethics and Travel at the Freie Universität in Berlin (Germany) and at the University in Gothenburg (Sweden) – and conducts interviews with inspiring personalities. Videos of all these events are posted in English, German and in Italian on ceberlin, the Institute’s own YouTube channel. These videos have attracted thousands of viewers, and Dr Mavellia hopes to encourage more people to integrate the principles they illustrate into their daily lives. Clara Mavellia is a consultant for corporates, organizations and institutions seeking to develop a sustainable economic strategy with ecological, social and ethical foundations. Her workshops help startups to refine their ideas and integrate ethical principles, demonstrating that doing good in business not only has a positive impact on the environment, society and ourselves, but also makes commercial sense. She is also much in demand as a keynote speaker.
Julian Nida-Rümelin is one of Germany’s best-known contemporary philosophers, along with Jürgen Habermas and Peter Sloterdijk. He studied Philosophy, Physics, Mathematics and Political Sciences, acquiring his doctorate in the field of Philosophy under Wolfgang Stegmüller. There followed a period as a research fellow at Munich, where he obtained a post-doctoral degree in 1989. After a guest lectureship in the United States, he was appointed first to a Chair in the Ethics of Bioscience at the University of Tübingen, then to another in Philosophy at the University of Göttingen. Later he was called to the Geschwister-Scholl-Institut für Politikwissenschaft at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, and he headed this institute from 2004 to 2007. In 2009 he moved to the Philosophy Faculty, accepting a Chair in Philosophy. From 2009 until 2012 he was Dean of the Philosophy Faculty. 2011, as President of the German Society of Philosophy, he organised its congress “A World of Reasons” in Munich, with 400 lectures and 2700 participants. He chaired the Board of Trustees of the Deutscher Studienpreis from 2004 to 2012. He is spokesperson for the extra-mural M.A. in Philosophy, Economics and Politics which he co-founded at Munich University. Since 2011 JNR has been running Munich’s interdisciplinary Competence Centre for Ethics. Julian Nida-Rümelin is an honorary professor at the Humboldt University in Berlin, and also an Ordinary Member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences, the European Academy of Sciences and Arts, and the Academy for Ethics in Medicine. For five years (1998-2002) JNR switched to the world of cultural politics, first as Cultural Secretary for the Bavarian capital Munich, and then as Commissioner for Culture in Gerhard Schröder’s first cabinet. JNR has written many books about issues of practical philosophy and political theory, including Kritik des Konsequentialismus (1993), Economic Rationality and Practical Reason (1997), Ethische Essays (2002), Angewandte Ethik (2005)², Demokratie und Wahrheit (2006), Philosophie und Lebensform (2009) and the Reclam trilogy devoted to Rationality (2001), Freedom (2005) and Responsibility (2011). His latest publications are: Die Optimierungsfalle – Philosophie einer humanen Ökonomie (2011), Risikoethik (2012), Der Sokrates-Club – Philosophische Gespräche mit Kindern and Philosophie einer humanen Bildung (2013). Forthcoming: Akademisierungswahn – zur Krise beruflicher und akademischer Bildung (2014). His political speeches were compiled in the volume Humanismus als Leitkultur (2006). The volume Vernunft und Freiheit, devoted to JNR’s practical philosophy, was edited by Dieter Sturma and appeared in 2012.
11:30 – 12:00
12:00 – 12:45
12:45 – 13:15
13:15 – 13:50
13:50 – 14:20
14:20 – 14:40
14:40 – 15:00
15:00 – 15:45
15:45 – 16:00
16:00 – 17:00
17:00 – 17:15
Anne Koark, Insolvency and New Start
Prof. Dr. Matthias Keidel, Telehealth in Smarthome
Holger Wolff, MaibornWolff GmbH
Metteliva Henningsen, Eat in Common
Anabell Schuchhardt, Heimwegtelefon
Davide Gomba, Officine Arduino
Talk by Prof. Dr. Julian Nida-Rümelin: Ethics and IT
Closing words by Dr. Clara Mavellia
Partners are entrepreneurs from any business sector who are helping to build a better world with their ethical and/or innovative business idea or product. Our motto – “Do good and spread the word” – is your opportunity to tell others about what you are doing. The format resembles an Italian piazza during the Renaissance: you will cross paths with artists, scientists and visitors, start chatting and exchange stimulating ideas. Mixing ideas from different walks of life is the best basis for successful creativity! You will be helping to shape our global market place in a way that makes both an ethical impact and economic sense.
To propagate these ideas, it is important that students and trainees from all disciplines and fields who would like to know more about ethics and entrepreneurship can take part in the event free of charge.
Partners are companies who offer to assume the costs for these students and trainees to attend, because they feel they have a social responsibility to spread the concept of sustainability at an early stage.
In this Spirit: It would be much appreciated if you could support this event with a contribution of €5,000 plus VAT.
As a participant, you are entitled to hear all the talks and to be present at all the panels and discussions.
Admission is free.
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