Chapter 4: Data Science & Ethics

by Roman Egger, Larissa Neuburger & Michelle Mattutzzi

Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Innovation and Management in Tourism
University of Florida
University of Groningen

Despite the numerous possibilities and advantages of data science to solve complex problems and gain new insights, the appropriate way of using and analyzing data, especially in today’s technologically dependent society, continues to face ethical questions and challenges. Although ethics in relation to computer science has been a topic of discussion since the 1950s, the topic has only recently joined the data science debate. Nonetheless, an overall consent or a common conceptual framework for ethics in data science is still nonexistent. In particular, privacy rights, data validity, and algorithm fairness in the areas of Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, and Machine Learning are the most important ethical challenges in need of a more thorough investigation. Thus, this chapter contributes to the overall discussion by providing an overview of current ethical challenges that are not only crucial for data science in general but also for the tourism industry in the future.