skip to content

Centre for Sustainable Development

Est 2000 - home of the MPhil in Engineering for Sustainable Development

Engineers as advocates for Sustainable Development: countering misinformation and the need for Aristotelian Rhetoric  

By R.A.Fenner

Paper to be presented at 10th EESD, Cork, Eire, June 2021


This paper argues that engineers need to take action as advocates for sustainable development, and for spotting and correcting fake news and mis-information. The spread of counter factual information is reviewed and its impact on encouraging denial of globally important issues, such as climate change is highlighted. Strategies for responding and correcting misinformation are presented and the importance of understanding and engaging in persuasive arguments through the application of the ethos, logos and ethos of Aristotelian rhetoric is explored. The paper presents examples of classroom exercises where these concepts are considered and developed with engineering graduate students and concludes by calling for such students to develop a voice as advocates for sustainable development.

This paper is available in PDF format here.


     Source: Debunking Handbook