Technology for Social Good

Big Idea Writeup

Technology for Social Good

Technology for Social Good refers to the use of technology – broadly engineering, applied science and computing-based artifacts, algorithm and techniques – towards addressing pressing social problems. Technology is rarely, if ever, “the” solution, but instead works in concert with non-technology based approaches.

Course

Technology and Society

Technology and Society examines connections between the history of technology and other aspects of human history. The course uses historical episodes to challenge widely held misperceptions about technology and how it operates in the modern world. I argue that technology is a human product, not an autonomous force. Technology makes nothing happen by itself, but only as the result of human action. People can choose to design and use technology in different ways to better serve human needs.

Fundamentals and Challenges for a Sustainable Chemical Enterprise

In the chemical enterprise (industry, government and academia), chemists and engineers are involved in and are responsible for the development of new products, materials and manufacturing processes. These activities include developing manufacturing processes that are environmentally friendlier, safer for workers and society, and economically more sustainable. They participate in and contribute to all segments of the supply chain, from cradle to grave (nature back to nature).

Environmental Engineering Senior Design

Capstone Design-Environmental Section is an interdisciplinary environmental design experience. The course is offered in parallel with the civil engineering section of the course; CEE students may form teams with mixed CE and EnvE composition; and teams from each program may perform projects in either section. Students form teams of 3 – 5 people, and these teams function as “companies” that provide engineering services under guidance of a sponsor on design project that the team selects.

Vertically Integrated Project: Bee Snap

This course is part of the Vertically Integrated Projects program, where students get credit for working on ongoing projects over multiple semesters.  As part of the Bee-SNAP team, students will design devices and computational approaches to study bees in urban habitats.  Predictions and models developed using these approaches will be validated with biological field studies.  Bees are important pollinators and efficient pollination is critical to our food supply.  Should bees become threatened in urban areas, food security could be at risk. 

Toolkit Listing

Urban Farming & Community Gardens

Starting a community garden in an abandoned vacant lot is a good way to address blight in a neighborhood. This project builds on the dataset of Westside Atlanta property surveys and walks the students through the process of starting a community garden to selling its produce on farmers markets. It emphasizes the social aspect of community building and the importance of buying local.

Rodent Control

This is a collection of assignments around the problem of rodent infestation in cities, which has become a pressing problem following the mild winters in 2015-16. The assignments are designed to 1) develop mapping and data analysis skills, 2) give meaningful ideas for application prototyping, and 3) foster thinking about community engagement. This is based on an up-to-date (2017) dataset of rat sightings in New York City and an on-going collaboration between Georgia Tech and the community of English Avenue.