Alvin Plantinga has argued that evolutionary naturalism (the idea that God does not tinker with evolution) undermines its own rationality. Natural selection is concerned with survival and reproduction, and false beliefs conjoined with complementary motivational drives could serve the same aims as true beliefs. Thus, argues Plantinga, if we believe we evolved naturally, we should not think our beliefs are, on average, likely to be true, including our beliefs in evolution and naturalism. I argue herein that our cognitive faculties are (...) less reliable than we often take them to be, that it is theism which has difficulty explaining the nature of our cognition, that much of our knowledge is not passed through biological evolution but learned and transferred through culture, and that the unreliability of our cognition helps explain the usefulness of science. (shrink)
Poetry illuminates the work of health care professionals well beyond procedure guidelines, clinic schedules or best practice policy. Poems and commentary from the perspective of a nurse, an emergency medical technician and two physicians are accompanied by an exploration of the meaning of work and the role of medical humanities.
With AIDS increasingly recognized as a potentially devastating disease, no concensus has emerged in the media about such AIDS?coverage questions as use of names of AIDS victims, whether cause of death of AIDS victims should be reported and what moral limitations should restrict AIDS coverage. A study of AIDS coverage in two major newspapers and two news magazines in 1987 identify weaknesses in current coverage of the AIDS phenomenon and suggests guidelines for ethical reporting ? servicing the greater good without (...) violating the integrity of victims. (shrink)
(although the FOF, unlike the CNF, is still a theorem). The correct version of Problem 62 is (following the format of (Pelletier, 1986)): Natural FOF Negated Conclusion CNF (Ax)r(Pet~(Px m Pf(x))) m Pf(f(x))] Pet Px+ P f(f(x)) + -Pa..
Levi Bryant, Nick Srnicek, and Graham Harman (eds): The Speculative Turn: Continental Materialism and Realism Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-5 DOI 10.1007/s10746-012-9218-0 Authors Geoff Pfeifer, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, MA, USA Journal Human Studies Online ISSN 1572-851X Print ISSN 0163-8548.
Anne-Marie Weidler Kubanek: Nothing less than an adventure: Ellen Gleditsch and her life in science Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-2 DOI 10.1007/s10698-011-9119-8 Authors Marelene Rayner-Canham, Memorial University, Grenfell Campus, Corner Brook, NL, Canada Geoff Rayner-Canham, Memorial University, Grenfell Campus, Corner Brook, NL, Canada Journal Foundations of Chemistry Online ISSN 1572-8463 Print ISSN 1386-4238.
This article examines critically Popper's arguments for a "unity of method" between natural science and social science. It discusses Popper's writings on the goals of science, the objects of scientific inquiry, the logic of scientific method, and the value of objectivity The major argument is that, despite his unifying intention, Popper himself provides good reasons for treating the two sciences differently. Popper proposes that social scientists follow a number of rules that are not required for, and that have no direct (...) equivalent in, natural science. For most of the cases examined here, these requirements are not simply marginal amendments to a basic methodological core; they are essentially moral or ethical in character and mark out a radically different intellectual and political enter prise. From this perspective, much of Popper's work on social science method ology has the character of an ethical treatise. It is argued further that Popper's accounts of the differences between natural and social science, and his call for moral responsibility, are based largely upon his understanding of the distinctive political threat that social science poses for the conduct of critical reason. (shrink)
Even if our justified beliefs are closed under known entailment, there may still be instances of transmission failure. Transmission failure occurs when P entails Q, but a subject cannot acquire a justified belief that Q by deducing it from P. Paradigm cases of transmission failure involve inferences from mundane beliefs (e.g., that the wall in front of you is red) to the denials of skeptical hypotheses relative to those beliefs (e.g., that the wall in front of you is not white (...) and lit by red lights). According to the Bayesian explanation, transmission failure occurs when (i) the subject’s belief that P is based on E, and (ii) P(Q|E) P(Q). No modifications of the Bayesian explanation are capable of accommodating such cases, so the explanation must be rejected as inadequate. Alternative explanations employing simple subjunctive conditionals are fully capable of capturing all of the paradigm cases, as well as those missed by the Bayesian explanation. (shrink)
The debate concerning corporate moral agency is normally conducted through philosophical arguments in articles which argue from only one point of view. This paper summarises both the arguments for and against corporate moral agency and concludes from this that the arguments in favour have more weight. The paper also addresses the way in which the law in the U.K. and the U.S.A. currently views this issue and shows how it is supportive of the concept of corporate moral agency. The paper (...) concludes by considering the implications of the debate for business ethics in general, and stakeholder theory and virtue ethics in particular. (shrink)
In 1949, the Department of Philosophy at the University of Manchester organized a symposium “Mind and Machine” with Michael Polanyi, the mathematicians Alan Turing and Max Newman, the neurologists Geoff rey Jeff erson and J. Z. Young, and others as participants. Th is event is known among Turing scholars, because it laid the seed for Turing’s famous paper on “Computing Machinery and Intelligence”, but it is scarcely documented. Here, the transcript of this event, together with Polanyi’s original statement and (...) his notes taken at a lecture by Jeff erson, are edited and commented for the fi rst time. Th e originals are in the Regenstein Library of the University of Chicago. Th e introduction highlights elements of the debate that included neurophysiology, mathematics, the mind-body-machine problem, and consciousness and shows that Turing’s approach, as documented here, does not lend itself to reductionism. (shrink)
Although Fair Trade has been in existence for more than 40 years, discussion in the business and business ethics literature of this unique trading and campaigning movement between Southern producers and Northern buyers and consumers has been limited. This paper seeks to redress this deficit by providing a description of the characteristics of Fair Trade, including definitional issues, market size and segmentation and the key organizations. It discusses Fair Trade from Southern producer and Northern trader and consumer perspectives and highlights (...) the key issues that currently face the Fair Trade movement. It then identifies an initial research agenda to be followed up in subsequent papers. (shrink)
The phenomenon of systematic polysemy offers a fruitful domain for examining the theoretical differences between lexicological and lexicographic approaches to description. We consider here the process that provides for systematic conversion of count to mass nouns in English (a chicken Æ chicken, an oak Æ oak etc.). From the point of view of lexicology, we argue, standard syntactic and pragmatic tests suggest the phenomenon should be described by means of a single unindividuated transfer function that does not distinguish between interpretations (...) (rabbit = "meat" vs. "fur"). From the point of view of lexicography, however, these pragmatically determined"sense precisions" are made part of explicit description via the inclusion of semantic "licenses," a mechanism distinct from lexical rules. (shrink)
Derided and disregarded by many of his contemporaries, Michel Foucault is now regarded as probably the most influential thinker of the twentieth century, his work is studied across the humanities and social sciences. Reading Foucault, however, can be a challenge, as can writing about him, but in Understanding Foucault, the authors offer an entertaining and informative introduction to his thinking. They cover all the issues Foucault dealt with, including power, knowledge, subjectivity and sexuality and discuss the development of his analysis (...) throughout his work. (shrink)
"ScreenPlay" is the first collection of essays devoted to exploring the relationship between cinema and video games. It attempts to introduce the field of video game studies while also increasing our understanding of the two artforms. Although not all of the essays are models of clear thinking on the subject, the volume will be a valuable resource for those working in film, philosophy, new media, and video game studies. Geoff King and Tanya Krzywinska have brought together a diverse collection (...) of essays where the productive approaches stand out clearly. As a result, one of the most important achievements of the volume is that it allows us to compare methodologies in order to see the kinds of research programs that add the most to our understanding of moving pictures. (shrink)
The comparison of corporate social performance with corporate financial performance has been a popular field of study over the past 25 years. The results, while broadly conclusive of a positive relationship, are not entirely consistent. In addition, most of the previous studies have concentrated on large-scale cross-industry studies and often with a single variable for corporate social performance, in order to produce statistically significant results. This weakens the richness of understanding that might be obtained from a single industry study with (...) multiple social variables, which would also allow investigation of inter-relationships between individual and sub-sets of social performance measures and between individual and sub-sets of social performance and financial performance measures. There have also been criticisms that the results lack a rigorous theoretical basis, and the paper demonstrates clearly how stakeholder theory must form the basis for this area of research. Following a review of the literature this paper presents the initial findings from a study of the U.K. Supermarket industry which suggest that contemporaneous social and financial performance are negatively related, while prior-period financial performance is positively related with subsequent social performance. Positive relationships between both age and size of the company with social performance are also found. (shrink)
The new millennium has opened with a perfectly splendid decade of scholarship relating to the ‘Species Problem’. So, at least we now have a clear idea of what this is, but still no clear solution that will suit both biologists and philosophers. Richards (The species problem. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2010 ) has recently attempted to capture this story and to fill the void with two projects in one book. The first project (Chapters 1–4) is a descriptive and analytical history (...) of the problem, which provides links to other recent works and thereby allows one to fully reconstruct the literature. The second (Chapters 5–7) is prescriptive and presents Richards’s solution via a ‘ division of labour in a conceptual framework ’ followed by recapitulation and conclusions. It is my assessment as presented here that the first project will appeal more to biologists and the second one to philosophers. There is much of value in Richards ( 2010 ) approach including an excellent evaluation of the essentialism story in the descriptive project and clear exposition of several key issues such as the ‘ species - as - individuals ’ versus ‘ species - as - categories ’ debate which are covered in the second project. Interesting and informative as these arguments undoubtedly are, something still seems to be missing here. In this essay I suggest that this perception arises from Richards’ (and others) failure to embrace ideas about the importance of relativity and contingency in species definitions and further that his new conceptual framework lacks one hierarchical level to link overarching lineage concepts of species as evolutionary units with practical definitions for their recognition. In my view, the missing link is reproductive isolation and I conclude my review by presenting a prescriptive project for biologists to balance the one that Richards has delivered to philosophers. (shrink)
Though logical positivism is part of Kant's complex legacy, positivists rejected both Kant's theory of intuition and his classification of mathematical knowledge as synthetic a priori. This paper considers some lingering defenses of intuition in mathematics during the early part of the twentieth century, as logical positivism was born. In particular, it focuses on the difficult and changing views of Hermann Weyl about the proper role of intuition in mathematics. I argue that it was not intuition in general, but his (...) commitment to twodifferent types of intuition, which explains his rather unusual and tormented philosophy of the mathematical continuum. I would like to thank Geoff Gorham, David McCarty, and Rosamond Rodman for reading an earlier draft of this work. I should also thank those who provided helpful comments on several distant ancestors of this paper: Emily Carson, Ulrich Majer, Erhard Scholz, John Schuerman, Stewart Shapiro, and Richard Tieszen. I am indebted to two anonymous referees for pointing out some problems and for pointing me to work on Weyl I did not previously know about. In particular, the recent articles in [Feist, 2004a] turned out to be (somewhat uncomfortably) relevant to the focus of this paper. In this last revision I have tried to show where I agree and disagree with the authors of those papers; I apologize for whatever repetition still exists, but it was tere before I read those papers. This paper has a long history, and comes out of several talks I gave some years ago. Audiences at the Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh (colloquium 1995), St Andrews University Philosophy of Mathematics Workshop (1996), the British Society for the History of Mathematics meeting (1996), the University of Mainz Mathematics Department (colloquium 1996), the Canadian Philosophical Association (1997 and 1999), and the University of British Columbia (colloquium 1998) should be thanked for their helpful comments. I also thank Neil Tennant for encouraging me to resurrect this work. CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
Journalists covering the 2007 shootings at Virginia Tech aggravated the trauma felt by victims' families and survivors, raising ethical questions about the role of media at major news events in an Internet-enabled era of continuous coverage. Some journalists breached professional norms by knocking on doors at 6 a.m., claiming a hidden camera was a breast pump and bullying reluctant interviewees. Even conscientious journalists, however, exacerbated the ordeal through their overabundance. By forcing survivors to endure repetitious interviews and making mourners feel (...) they were being stalked, journalists demonstrated they must embrace press pools to minimize harm in the future. (shrink)
Similarities in properties among pairs of metallic elements and their compounds in the lower-right quadrant of the Periodic Table have been named the ‘Knight’s Move’ relationship. Here, we have undertaken a systematic study of the only two ‘double-pairs’ of ‘Knight’s Move’ elements within this region: copper-indium/indium-bismuth and zinc-tin/tin-polonium, focussing on: metal melting points; formulas and properties of compounds; and melting points of halides and chalcogenides. On the basis of these comparisons, we conclude that the systematic evidence for ‘Knight’s Move’ relationships (...) derives from similarities in formulas and properties of matching pairs of compounds in the same oxidation state. Physical properties, such as melting points, do not provide consistent patterns and trends and hence should not be considered as a common characteristic of this relationship. (shrink)
Interest in the notion of the possible financial sacrifice suffered by socially responsible investment (SRI) fund investors for considering ethical, social and environmental issues in their investment decisions has spawned considerable academic interest in the performance of SRI funds. Both the Australian and international research literature have yielded largely mixed results. However, several of these studies are hampered by methodological problems which can obscure the significance of reported results, such as the use of small sample sizes, inconsistencies in the time (...) frames selected to analyse performance and different modelling frameworks used to estimate investment returns. This study attempts to redress some of these issues by investigating the returns performance of 89 ethical funds in Australia over the period 1986–2005. Using a multi-factor CAPM model [Fama, E. F., and K. R. French (1996) J. Finance 51(1), 55] (which controls for factors such as size, book-to-market value and momentum) we find that ethical funds significantly under-perform the market in Australia, particularly in the most recent 5 years of our sample period (2000–2005). Risk adjusted returns (using Jensen’s alpha) indicate that average annual underperformance is around 1.52% in the 2000–2005 period for our sample and .88% over the whole sample period. Our results contrast with many previous studies (both Australian and international), which have not found statistically significant differences in the performance of ethical funds relative to market benchmarks and/or a matched sample of conventional funds. (shrink)
Traditional approaches tend to regard figuration (and by extension, deference in general) as an essentially marked or playful use of language, which is associated with a pronounced stylistic effect. For linguistic purposes, however, there is no reason for assigning a special place to deferred uses that are stylistically notable — the sorts of usages that people sometimes qualify with a phrase like "figuratively speaking." There is no important linguistic difference between using redcoat to refer to a British soldier and using (...) suit to refer to a corporate executive (as in "A couple of suits stopped by to talk about the new products"). What creates the stylistic effect of the latter is not the mechanism that generates it, but the marked background assumptions that license it — here, the playful presupposition that.. (shrink)
This study explores the opinions of Polish and South African management students regarding the ethical conduct exhibited by organisations specific to their respective home countries. Through the use of a survey, primary data were collected via a self-administered questionnaire. Non-probability sampling in the form of a quota sample was employed, and a target of 250 respondents was pursued at a South African and a Polish university respectively. The data were subjected to SPSS. The findings showed that students in South Africa (...) and Poland have little faith in organisations perceived to be conducting business in an ethical fashion. Interesting similarities and differences in Polish and South African opinion were also identified. (shrink)
There is a growing body of literature on ethical or socially responsible investment across a range of disciplines. This paper highlights the key themes in the field and identifies some of the major theoretical and practical challenges facing both scholars and practitioners. One of these challenges is understanding better the complexity of the relationship between such investment practices and corporate behaviour. Noting that ethical investment is seldom characterised by agreement about what it actully constitutes, and that much of the extant (...) research focuses on a narrow set of issues, the paper argues that there are benefits associated with examining ethical investment as a process. (shrink)
The usefulness of isoelectronic series (same number of total electrons and atoms and of valence electrons) across Periods is often overlooked. Here we show the ubiquitousness of isoelectronic sets by means of matrices, arrays, and sequential series. Some of these series have not previously been identified. In addition, we recommend the use of the term valence-isoelectronic for species which differ in the number of core electrons and pseudo-isoelectronic for matching (n) and (n + 10) species.
This paper is a further development of two previous pieces of work (Moore 2002, 2005) in which modern virtue ethics, and in particular MacIntyre’s (1985) related notions of “practice” and “institution,” have been explored in the context of business. It first introduces and defines the concept of corporate character and seeks to establish why it is important. It then reviews MacIntyre’s virtues-practice-institution schema and the implications of this at the level of the institution in question—the corporation—and argues that the concept (...) of corporate character follows from, but is a novel development of, MacIntyre’s schema. The paper contrasts corporate character and virtues with the more familiar concepts of corporate culture and values. The constitutive and substantive elementsof corporate character, including the essential corporate virtues, are then drawn out and illustrated with reference to the cases explored in Koehn (1998). Finally, the paper acknowledges and counters a specific criticism of this approach. (shrink)
Abstract: After exploring MacIntyre’s (1985) practice—institution distinction, the article demonstrates its applicability to business-as-practice and to corporations as institutions. It then considers the implications of MacIntyre’s schema to ethical schizophrenia, to the claim that the market is a source of the virtues and to the opposite claim that capitalism corrodes character. A fully worked out modern virtue ethics, based on MacIntyre’s work, is then established and the claim is made and substantiated that such an understanding of MacIntrye’s work revitalises it (...) and makes it directly applicable to business and to corporations. (shrink)
Most automated theorem provers are clausal-form provers based on variants of resolutionrefutation. In my , I described the theorem prover OSCAR that was based instead on natural deduction. Some limited evidence was given suggesting that OSCAR was suprisingly efficient. The evidence consisted of a handful of problems for which published data was available describing the performance of other theorem provers. This evidence was suggestive, but based upon too meager a comparison to be conclusive. The question remained, “How does natural deduction (...) compare with resolution-refutation?” In the ensuing seven years, OSCAR has evolved in important ways, and other developments have made it possible to collect more accurate comparative data. Specifically, the creation of the TPTP library of problems for theorem provers,1 and the availability of important theorem provers on the world wide web, make objective comparisons easier. These developments recently inspired Geoff Sutcliffe, one of the founders of the TPTP library, to issue a challenge to OSCAR. At CADE-13, a competition was held for clausal-form theorem provers.2 Otter was one of the most successful contestants. In addition, Otter is able to handle problems stated in natural form (as opposed to clausal form), and Otter is readily available for different platforms.3 Sutcliffe selected 212 problems from the TPTP library, and suggested that OSCAR and Otter run these problems on the same hardware. This “Shootout at the ATP corral” took place, with the result that OSCAR was on the average 40 times faster than Otter. In addition, OSCAR was able to find proofs for 16 problems on which Otter failed, and Otter was able to find proofs for 3 problems on which OSCAR failed. Taking into account that Otter was written in C and OSCAR in LISP, the speed difference of the algorithms themselves could be as much as an order of magnitude greater. Apparently, natural deduction has some advantages over resolution-refutation.. (shrink)
As part of a series of contributions on patterns in the periodic table, the relationships among the transition metals are examined here in a systematic manner. It is concluded that the traditional method of categorizing transition elements by group or by period is not as valid as by using combinations thereof. From chemical similarities, it is proposed that the transition metals be considered as the [V–Cr–Mn] triad; the [Fe–Co–Ni–Cu] tetrad; the [Ti–Zr–Hf–Nb–Ta] pentad; the [Mo–W–Tc–Re] tetrad; and the [Ru–Os–Rh–Ir–Pd–Pt–Au] heptad. Silver (...) does not fit neatly in anywhere and is better linked with thallium. (shrink)
This paper briefly reviews the theories that seek to explain the phenomenon of corporate charitable donations and then provides a review of the empirical issues that have arisen in previous studies in this area. The findings of an analysis of charitable donations data from the entire U.K. FTSE index for the years 1985–2000 are then reported. These findings include the observation of a time-related increase in charitable donations, which is compared with an earlier study to give a 24 year history (...) of charitable donations in the U.K. The findings note little responsiveness of the monetary value of charitable donations to the economic performance of firms. An international comparison over time against U.S. trends is also reported and shows how U.S. corporations have traditionally been more generous than U.K. firms, but that the trend in the U.S. is downwards. Membership of a U.K.-based "tithing" club (the PerCent Club) is shown to be associated with higher profit performance against non-members. Members' charitable contributions against profit are shown to be higher than the FTSE mean although short of the 0.5% target figure in "cash" terms. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of these findings in relation to the theoretical positions advanced for corporate philanthropy. (shrink)
∗ This paper has been presented to the Philosophy Departments of Tulane University and the University of Arizona and, originally, to the 1999 Sociedad Filosofica Ibero Americana (SOFIA) Conference on Legal and Political Philosophy, in Mazatlan, Mexico. I am most thankful to all the participants. I am especially grateful for discussions with Julia Annes, Tom Christiano, Eric Mack, Geoff Sayre-McCord, David Schmidtz and Michael Smith.
This paper develops a set of 16 criteria, divided into four groupings, for responsible business practice (RBP) in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) drawn from the existing SME/RBP literature. The current lack of a general set of criteria against which such activity can be judged is noted and this deficit is redressed. In order to make an initial assessment in support of the criteria so derived, an exploratory feasibility study of RBP in U.K. Fair Trade organisations was conducted. The findings (...) from this study show that most but not all of the RBP criteria seem to be applicable to U.K. Fair Trade organisations but it is recommended that the complete set of criteria continues to be used in further research until such time as there is a general consensus as to which criteria are appropriate. Implications for RBP in small businesses in general, and for Fair Trade organisations in particular, are drawn out and suggestions for further research are identified. (shrink)
The paper begins by exploring whether a “tendency to avarice” exists in most capitalist business organisations. It concludes that it does and that this is problematic. The problem centres on the potential threat to the integrity of human character and the disablement of community.What, then, can be done about it? Building on previous work (Moore, 2002) in which MacIntyre’s notions of practice and institution were explored (MacIntyre, 1985), the paper offers a philosophically based argument in favour of the rediscovery of (...) craftsmanship by those who work in business organisations, and the exercise of craftsmanship in community.The practical implications for individuals of this way of conceptualising business, and the virtues which must then come to the fore, are discussed. (shrink)
The paper begins by providing a classification of the regulatory environment within which Business Schools, particularly those in the U.K., operate. The classification identifies mandatory vs. voluntary and prescriptive vs. permissive requirements in relation to the Business and Management curriculum. Three QAA Subject Benchmark Statements relating to Business and Management, the AMBA MBA guidelines, and the EQUIS and AACSB standards are then compared and contrasted with each other. The cognitive and affective learning outcomes associated with business ethics contained in each (...) of these statements are then detailed. The conclusion is that from an international perspective compliance with relevant standards, while requiring due consideration, should be relatively straightforward. From a U.K. perspective, however, the QAA Subject Benchmark Statements provide the most rigorous standards and to meet these will require considerable development on the part of many Business Schools in the U.K. For those academics engaged in this area, however, this represents an opportunity not to be missed. (shrink)
In this paper the problematic nature of the morality of management, in particular related to business organisations operating under Anglo-American capitalism, is explored. MacIntyre’s critique of managers in After Virtue (1985) serves as the starting point but this critique is itself subjected to analysis leading to a more balanced and contemporary view of the morality of management than MacIntyre provides. Paradoxically perhaps, MacIntyre’s own virtues-goods-practice-institution schema is shown to provide a way of re-imagining business organisations and management and thereby holds (...) out the possibility of resolving the issue of the morality of management within such organisations. Implications for management practice are drawn out. (shrink)
The empirical data do not unequivocally support a consistent fixed capacity of four chunks. We propose an alternative account whereby capacity is limited by the precision of specifying the temporal and spatial context in which items appear, that similar psychophysical constraints limit number estimation, and that short term memory (STM) is continuous with long term memory (LTM).
Within the field of education management studies, recent reforms promoting devolution and choice are often seen to provide exciting new opportunities. It is claimed that the 'new' education management, with its emphasis on site-based decision-making and consumer accountability, will enable headteachers and principals to 'take control' of their schools and make them more productive environments in which to work and study. However, our review of research findings from five different countries that are putting in place devolution and choice policies suggests (...) that these new opportunities are more illusory than real. Positioned between the competing demands of the state and the market, school managers are becoming increasingly isolated from colleagues and classrooms - leading to a growing divergence between the managers and the managed. The paper considers the implication of recent developments for managers in general and for women managers in particular and concludes by discussing the relationship between the personalisation of responsibility and the legitimation of crises within the state and public education. (shrink)
OBJECTIVE: To describe the issues faced, and how they were addressed, by the University of Toronto Critical Care Medicine Program/Joint Centre for Bioethics Task Force on Appropriate Use of Life-Sustaining Treatment. The clinical problem addressed by the Task Force was dealing with requests by patients or substitute decision makers for life-sustaining treatment that their healthcare providers believe is inappropriate. DESIGN: Case study. SETTING: The University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics/Critical Care Medicine Program Task Force on Appropriate Use of Life-Sustaining (...) Treatment. PARTICIPANTS: The 24-member Task Force included physician and nursing leaders from five critical care units, bioethicists, a legal scholar, a health administration expert, a social worker, and a hospital public relations professional. INTERVENTIONS: None. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Our specific lessons learned include a) a policy focus on process; b) use of a negotiation and mediation model, rather than a hospital ethics committee model, for this process; and c) the policy development process is itself a negotiation, so we recommend equal involvement of interested groups including patients, families, and the public. CONCLUSIONS: This article describes the key issues faced by the Task Force while developing its policy. It will provide a useful starting point for other groups developing policy on appropriate use of life-sustaining treatment. (shrink)
The current economic and preceding financial crises seem to provide evidence in favour of the self-destruction thesis of capitalism. Responses to the crisis have been polarised. Some suggest that regulatory changes are all that is needed. Others suggest the need to change the economic system by developing a new global economic ethic. The first is too limited, the second too utopian. This article suggests that a MacIntyrean virtue ethics approach provides both a more convincing diagnosis of the problem and leads (...) to a more workable prescription. First, we need to understand the internal contradictions of the tradition that has developed of how to ‘do’ business. Then we need the virtues to be exercised inside practices and institutions. But virtue itself needs to be institutionalised; we need an appropriate governance of virtue in organizations. Even though governance is usually taken to ‘crowd out’ virtue, this article proposes an approach to governance that ‘crowds in’ virtue. (shrink)
The paper analyses results from a questionnaire-based survey of ethical behavior of members of the Western Australian Senior Executive Service. Relating to definitions of deontology (duty) and teleology (ends over means) the study examines the validity of three hypotheses on ethical behaviour/decision making frameworks. Longitudinal data is related to the 1983–90WA Inc period. The study establishes that SES managers apply ethical frameworks in order to understand the meaning of: ethical behaviour and that there are groups of managers with distinct understandings (...) of what constitutes ethical behavior which is reflective of particular ethics theories. Three groups of managers are identified: (1) emphasises teleology (2) focuses on external influences (rules, standards and codes) and (3) encompasses both teleology and external influences and, to a lesser extent deontology. Only this latter group is regarded as having an appropriate repertoire of potential responses to any given ethical dilemma. There is no support for the view that those beginning employment in the public service post 1984 adversely affected the ethical decision making frameworks of other senior managers. (shrink)
Over the last two hundred years, there have been many occasions where the name of a newly-discovered element has provoked controversy and dissent but in modern times, the naming of elements after scientists has proved to be particularly contentious. Here we recount the threads of this story, predominantly through discourses in the popular scientific journals, the first major discussion on naming an element after a scientist (Moseley); the first definitive naming after a scientist (Curie); and the first naming after (...) a living scientist (Seaborg). (shrink)
The early Periodic Tables displayed an 8-Group system. Though we now use an 18-Group array, the old versions were based on evidence of similarities between what we now label as Group ( n ) and the corresponding Group ( n + 10). As part of a series on patterns in the Periodic Table, in this contribution, these similarities are explored for the first time in a systematic manner. Pourbaix (Eh–pH) diagrams have been found particularly useful in this context.
Steels & Belpaeme (S&B) describe the role of genetic evolution in linguistic category sharing among a population of agents. We consider their methodology and conclude that, although it is plausible that genetic evolution is sufficient for such tasks, there is a bias in the presented work for such a conclusion to be reached. We suggest ways to eliminate this bias and make the model more convincingly relevant to the cognitive sciences.
A Managerial Philosophy of Technology offers a unique combination of a review of academic work in the philosophy of technology with practical methodologies for business management of technology strategy.
The product/process distinction with regards to “argument” has a longstanding history and foundational role in argumentation theory. I shall argue that, regardless of one’s chosen ontology of arguments, arguments are not the product of some process of arguing. Hence, appeal to the distinction is distorting the very organizational foundations of argumentation theory and should be abandoned.
: In “What is a ‘Real’ Argument?” Geoff Goddu (2009) suggests and rejects four candidates for what a real argument is, concluding that argumentation theorists should abandon the idea that there is a theoretically significant sub-class of arguments that should be called real. In this paper, I argue against Goddu’s conclusion, finding that real arguments are arguments that are used or that have prospective use in the practice of thinking about matters that call for reasonable and reflective judgment concerning (...) what to believe or do. What makes these arguments theoretically distinct from arguments in general is that they are used or that they may be used in the pragmatic endeavor of attempting to establish good reasons for beliefs and actions. Real arguments are therefore the arguments that should be treated in a course that aims to improve the skills of argumentation that students might use outside of the classroom in real-life. (shrink)
Patrick O'Brian, the Aubrey-Maturin Series of twenty novels (Norton, 1970-1999). My appreciation written for WIRED magazine: "I re-read this extraordinary series of novels because of the depth of portrayal of the major and minor characters, but also because they teach me so much about what science and technology were like two centuries ago. O'Brian shows you the world-that-was through the eyes of a Tory naval captain (Jack Aubrey), at sea since the age of 12, working his way up to admiral, (...) dealing with the height of 18th-century technology (sailing ships and celestial navigation). I identify more strongly with his liberally-educated, physician-scientist friend (Stephen Maturin), who went to medical school in Paris during the French Revolution. You see natural history turning into a biological science, bleeding-and-purging medicine starting to learn some physiology -- and, because Maturin is also an intelligence agent for the Admiralty, you see statecraft at work during the Napoleonic Wars. These books strongly remind you about what scientific ignorance and social conventions can do to your mindset, and how the future will likely judge us as well." -- William H. Calvin You can get them all at once, so you can: The Complete Aubrey/Maturin Series (20 volumes). Depending on amazon.com's current discount, this works out to US$15-20 each (and in hardcover). (shrink)
Recent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and pathological studies have indicated that axonal loss is a major contributor to disease progression in multiple sclerosis. 1 H magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), through measurement of N -acetyl aspartate (NAA), a neuronal marker, provides a unique tool to investigate this. Patients with primary progressive multiple sclerosis have few lesions on conventional MRI, suggesting that changes in normal appearing white matter (NAWM), such (...) as axonal loss, may be particularly relevant to disease progression in this group. To test this hypothesis NAWM was studied with MRS, measuring the concentration of N -acetyl derived groups (NA, the sum of NAA and N -acetyl aspartyl glutamate). Single-voxel MRS using a water-suppressed PRESS sequence was carried out in 24 patients with primary progressive multiple sclerosis and in 16 age-matched controls. Ratios of metabolite to creatine concentration (Cr) were calculated in all subjects, and absolute concentrations were measured in 18 patients and all controls. NA/Cr (median 1.40, range 0.86–1.91) was significantly lower in NAWM in patients than in controls (median 1.70, range 1.27–2.14; P = 0.006), as was the absolute concentration of NA (patients, median 6.90 mM, range 4.62–10.38 mM; controls, median 7.77 mM, range 6.60–9.71 mM; P = 0.032). There was no significant difference in the absolute concentration of creatine between the groups. This study supports the hypothesis that axonal loss occurs in NAWM in primary progressive multiple sclerosis and may well be a mechanism for disease progression in this group. (shrink)
Lilley and Lightfoot examine a number of rhetorical accounts of the emergence and virtue of "futures" markets. They attempt to unpack the variety of legitimatory discourses that surround such markets to examine the precarious balance between uncertainty and knowledge that is supposedly managed by the skills of traders. The "reduction" of uncertainty through enhanced knowledge is, somewhat counterfactually, one of the key benefits ascribed to futures markets. These markets are male up of many players, with some seeking to "smooth" business (...) cycles for their employers, while others seek short-term entrepreneurial gains through their "trading skills," utilizing their second sight to exploit the volatility of the market. What we witness then is an unhappy marriage between brokers of stability and others whose raison d'être is precisely the opposite, the skilled surfing of tides of uncertainty. This has profound implications for the types of activities and rhetoric associated with such markets. Such implications m a y carry over from the financial world to the practice of management itself. (shrink)