'Fair benefits' accounts of exploitation require a normative principle of fairness: Response to Gbadegesin and Wendler, and Emanuel et al

Bioethics 22 (4):239–244 (2008)
Abstract
In 2004 Emanuel et al. published an influential account of exploitation in international research, which has become known as the 'fair benefits account'. In this paper I argue that the thin definition of fairness presented by Emanuel et al, and subsequently endorsed by Gbadegesin and Wendler, does not provide a notion of fairness that is adequately robust to support a fair benefits account of exploitation. The authors present a procedural notion of fairness – the fair distribution of the benefits of research is to be determined on a case-by-case basis by the parties involved in each study. The fairness of the distribution of benefits is not assessed against an independent normative standard. Emanuel et al.'s account of fairness provides a framework for objecting only to transactions that occur without the fully informed consent of the weaker party. As a result, a debate about exploitation collapses into a debate about consent. This is problematic because, as the proponents of the fair benefits framework acknowledge, neither the trial participants' consent nor the host community's consent preclude exploitation. Attempts to stipulate normative standards of fairness to protect research subjects in developing countries have been controversial and divisive, and it is therefore understandable that bioethicists would be tempted to develop accounts of exploitation that are independent of such prescriptive principles. I conclude, however, that the utility of the fair benefits model of exploitation as a policy tool will ultimately depend on whether a substantive principle of fairness can be developed to underpin it
Keywords international research  fair benefits  exploitation  consent
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 10,768
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Citations of this work BETA

View all 6 citations

Similar books and articles
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

43 ( #38,288 of 1,098,976 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

12 ( #14,649 of 1,098,976 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.