Drones in Military Warfare: The Moral and Emotional Implications of an Emerging Technology

  • Rauch, M. (Lecturer)
  • Shahzad Ansari (Lecturer)

Activity: Talk or presentationLecture and oral contribution


There has been increasing interest pertaining to emerging technologies, however the emotional and moral challenges for people interacting with them have received less attention. In this paper, we study how emerging technologies trigger mixed feelings by disrupting the meaning and moral legitimacy of their work. We examine how drones—an emerging technology in warfare used to remotely observe and attack from offsite command centers—have changed the nature of the work. We draw on field observations, interviews, and 43 personal diaries from military personnel working for the U.S. Airforce. We develop a model explaining how new technology changes the nature of work and triggers emotional ambivalence by unsettling its core meaning and moral legitimacy, and how actors deploy different strategies to cope with this experience.
Period19 Sept 2021
Event titleStrategic Management Society 41st Annual International Conference. SMS 2021: Imagination and Inspiration: Creating Strategy Breakthroughs in a Discordant World
Event typeConference
Conference number41
OrganiserThe Strategic Management Society
LocationCanadaShow on map