Jun 23, 2014 4:30 PM

A group of educators, scientists, and legal/ethical scholars convened at the Asilomar Conference Grounds on June 1-4, 2014 and issued an ethical framework to inform decisions about appropriate use of data and technology in learning research for higher education.Officials from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (PCAST) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) also attended as observers.

The purpose of the convening was to specify the ethical challenges and obligations that accompany research on higher learning in the era of big data. It was modeled after a 1975 event at the same site, during which 140 biologists, lawyers and physicians met to write voluntary guidelines for ensuring the safety of recombinant DNA technology. Another precedent was a 1976 meeting at the Belmont Conference Center in Elkridge, Maryland, which produced a document informing ethical considerations of research with human subjects.

For more information on the convention, please visit http://asilomar-highered.info/.