Utilitarianism and Buddist ethics: a comparative approach to the ethics of animal research

This thesis explores the comparison utilitarianism and Buddhist ethics as they can be applied to animal research. It begins by examining some of the general discussions surrounding the use of animals in research. The historical views on the moral status of animals, the debate surrounding their use in animals, as well as the current 3R paradigm and its application in Canadian research are explored. The thesis then moves on to expound the moral system of utilitarianism as put forth by Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, as well as contemporary additions to the system. It also looks at the basics of Buddhist ethics well distinguishing the Mahayana from the Therevada. Three case studies in animal research are used to explore how both systems can be applied to animal research. It then offers a comparison as to how both ethical systems function within the field of animal research and explores the implications in their application on its practice.
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