The Minimum Information for Biological and Biomedical Investigations (MIBBI) project aims to foster the coordinated development of minimum-information checklists and provide a resource for those exploring the range of extant checklists.
The theme of the third annual Spring workshop of the HUPO-PSI was proteomics and beyond and its underlying goal was to reach beyond the boundaries of the proteomics community to interact with groups working on the similar issues of developing interchange standards and minimal reporting requirements. Significant developments in many of the HUPO-PSI XML interchange formats, minimal reporting requirements and accompanying controlled vocabularies were reported, with many of these now feeding into the broader efforts of the Functional Genomics Experiment (FuGE) (...) data model and Functional Genomics Ontology (FuGO) ontologies. (shrink)
Moral realists can, and should, allow that the truth-conditional content of moral judgments is in part attitudinal. I develop a two-dimensional semantics that embraces attitudinal content while preserving realist convictions about the independence of moral facts from our attitudes. Relative to worlds “considered as counterfactual,” moral terms rigidly track objective, response-independent properties. But relative to different ways the actual world turns out to be, they nonrigidly track whatever properties turn out to be the objects of our relevant attitudes. This theory (...) provides realists with a satisfactory account of Moral Twin Earth cases and an improved response to Blackburn’s supervenience argument. (shrink)
Harry Frankfurt has claimed that some of our desires are ‘internal’, i.e., our own in a special sense. I defend the idea that a desire's being internal matters in a normative, reasons-involving sense, and offer an explanation for this fact. The explanation is Kantian in spirit. We have reason to respect the desires of persons in so far as respecting them is a way to respect the persons who have them (in some cases, ourselves). But if desires matter normatively in (...) so far as they belong to persons, then it matters whether they really do belong to the persons who have them. Thus Kantian considerations explain why identification (or internality) is a normatively relevant category. This account is superior to others, and does not lead to reasons bootstrapping or a self-centred conception of deliberation. (shrink)
In 2007, 275 million tons of meat1 were produced worldwide, enough for 92 pounds for every person (Halweil 2008, 1). On one level, this fourfold increase in meat production since 1960 might be seen as a great success story about the spread of prosperity and wealth. President Herbert Hoover's memorable 1928 campaign pledge to put "a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage" has, at least for many in the developed world, largely been realized. This juxtaposition of (...) chickens and cars is appropriate in a way that Hoover did not intend: in an important sense, the same industrial processes that have put a "car in every garage" now make it possible to "put a chicken in every pot" or a burger on every plate. What .. (shrink)
This article argues for the view that statements about normative reasons are context-sensitive. Specifically, they are sensitive to a contextual parameter specifying a relevant person's or group's body of information. The argument for normative reasons contextualism starts from the context-sensitivity of the normative “ought” and the further premise that reasons must be aligned with oughts. It is incoherent, I maintain, to suppose that someone normatively ought to φ but has most reason not to φ. So given that oughts depend on (...) context, a parallel view about normative reasons is needed. It is shown that the resulting view solves notorious puzzles involving apparently conflicting but equally plausible claims about reasons. These puzzles arise especially in cases where agents have limited information or false beliefs. In these cases, we feel torn between reasons claims that take into account the limitations of the agent's perspective and apparently conflicting claims that are made from a more objective point of view. The contextualist account developed here accommodates both objectivist and subjectivist intuitions. It shows that all of the claims in question can be true, provided that they are relativized to different values of the relevant information parameter. Also, contextualism yields a fruitful approach to the debate about having reasons and the alleged failure of the so-called “factoring account”. (shrink)
Although debates over carbon taxes and trading schemes, over carbon offsets and compact fluorescents are important, our efforts to address the environmental challenges that we face will fall short unless and until we also set about the difficult work of reconceiving who we are and how we are related to our processive cosmos. What is needed, I argue, are new ways of thinking and acting grounded in new ways of understanding ourselves and our relationship to the world, ways of understanding (...) that recognize our fundamental interdependence and interconnection with everyone and everything in the cosmos, ways of understanding that recognize the intrinsic beauty and value of every form of existence. What is needed, I suggest, is a moral philosophy grounded in Alfred North Whitehead's philosophy of organism. It is the primary aim of this essay to defend the value of a moral philosophy inspired by Whitehead's organic, beauty-centered conception of reality. (shrink)
This paper explores Kant’s views about the logical form of “I think”-judgments. It is shown that according to Kant, in an important class of cases the prefix “I think” does not contribute to the assertoric, truth-conditional content of judgments of the form “I think that P.” Thus, judgments of this type are often merely judgments that P. The prefix “I think” does mention the subject and his thought, but it does not make the complex judgment a judgment about the subject (...) and his or her thought. Kant argues that there is a distinctive kind of self-consciousness that is adequately expressed by means of this non-assertoric “I think.” The paper explains that understanding Kant’s ideas on the logic of “I think”-judgments is fruitful both for discussions in contemporary analytic philosophy and for an adequate understanding of Kant’s philosophy. (shrink)
Given the problems in the business world, it might be time to rethink business from a perspective that is not (neo)Marxist or capitalist. This article does just that by rethinking the ideology of human freedom in business. This article argues that corporations are freer than humans under capitalism. Moreover, corporations, more so than humans, engage in free action, as Arendt defines action. To return to the place where human freedom is an actuality not ideology, we must understand the nature of (...) freedom and how the present situation arose. From that we can then develop solutions. One solution posited here is that managers must treat employees as worthy of empowerment. This solution gives organizational behavior theory the ethical status that it has not had earlier. Even if the solution set out in this review is not functional, the view of business developed in this article is new and merits further examination in order that business can functional more ethically, including the treatment of people. (shrink)
This paper argues that a certain kind of alienation from labour can be analyzed and explained in the theoretical framework that is dominant in current economics. Given a neoclassical model of a labour market, the intrinsic value that different kinds of labour may have for people can be represented as a source of utility (in the technical sense). It can then be shown that in capitalist economies, basing one’s supply decisions on this intrinsic value is predictably costly. So in the (...) long run, rational agents can be – and will be – expected to make their labour supply decisions based only on considerations of income and leisure time. In the resulting picture, rational agents are indifferent with regard to different qualitatively specific kinds of labour. I draw on the theory of efficiency wages to show that this picture lies at the root of contemporary problems like involuntary unemployment and injustice. (shrink)
Definition of the problem The creation and selection of children as tissue donors is ethically controversial. Critics often appeal to Kant’s Formula of Humanity, i.e. the requirement that people be treated not merely as means but as ends in themselves. As many defenders of the procedure point out, these appeals usually do not explain the sense of the requirement and hence remain obscure. Arguments This article proposes an interpretation of Kant’s principle, and it proposes that two different instrumental stances be (...) distinguished. I argue that the creation of “saviour children” is a form of instrumentalization that I dub “preemptive instrumentalization” and that it is categorically different from earlier forms of instrumental attitudes concerning human reproduction. Conclusion Critics are wrong to claim that Kant’s principle is either compatible with the selection of saviour siblings or too vague to serve as an ethical principle. (shrink)
While most scholars readily recognize that Alfred North Whitehead had deep and penetrating misgivings about the substantial view of individuality, fewer note that these misgivings stem as much from axiological considerations as ontological ones. I contend that, taken in the context of the “classical interpretation” of his metaphysics, Whitehead’s bold affirmation that actuality and value are coextensive introduces a potentially serious problem for the adequacy and applicability of his axiology. For if actuality is coextensive with valuebut actuality is itself limited (...) to subjects of experience, then the objective world can have no intrinsic value. My aim is to demonstrate that, in order to respond to the very serious challenge which the problem of subjectivism represents and save Whitehead’s intendeduniverse of value, we must seek an alternative to the classical interpretation of Whitehead’s metaphysics. I refer to this alternative as the “ecstatic interpretation.”. (shrink)
The most fundamental changes of information exchange and communication in society today have been caused by the fast and thorough penetration of all facets of life through networked computers and mobile phones, which will both soon merge with our traditional TV. In this report, these developments will be discussed on four different levels: individuals, groups, organisations and networks. Furthermore contradictory developmental patterns are considered: global versus regional development, entrepreneurship on different scales, data availability versus data security, reality versus virtuality, education, (...) and the ethics of multimedia and the Internet. (shrink)
This monograph develops an argument for the following view: In leading an autonomous life, persons make choices and adopt attitudes of a distinctive kind. To justify these choices and attitudes, they need to draw on knowledge about their biographies. More specifically, their biographies are a source of a distinctive type of practical reasons. These reasons are typically such that their adequate articulation will have a narrative structure. Along the way, the book develops what has been called "the best analysis of (...) the concept of narrativity currently on offer" (Journal of Literary Theory 2011). This monograph has received the Wolfgang Stegmüller award of the German Society for Analytic Philosophy (GAP) in 2009. (shrink)
Strategies to involve agribusiness in the development of sustainable agricultural systems have been limited by the lack of a comprehensive conceptual framework for identifying the most critical supportive policies, programs and regulations. In this paper, we propose an efficiency/substitution/redesign framework to categorize strategies for modifying agribusiness practices. This framework is then used to identify a diverse range of short, medium, and long-term strategies to be pursued by governments, community groups, academics and agribusiness to support the transition. Strategies discussed include corporate (...) greening, ethical investment, changing the legal status of the corporaton, new business forms and the development of ecological economics. (shrink)
The paper describes supportive actions for users of NC machine tools. From the technical point of view, this comprises new input/output media for interaction with the machine as well as new software tools for help systems. From the organisational point of view, concepts for group work are to be supported and a methology for participation of users in the development process is suggested. A software tool for job order planning is presented which combines organisational and technical aspects. One of the (...) aims of the research reported here, is to explore options of systems which keep the human expert in the loop of shopfloor production. (shrink)
Tim Henning, Person sein und Geschichten erzählen: Eine Studie über personale Autonomie und narrative Gründe Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-3 DOI 10.1007/s10677-012-9341-z Authors Logi Gunnarsson, Department of Philosophy, University of Potsdam, 14469 Potsdam, Germany Journal Ethical Theory and Moral Practice Online ISSN 1572-8447 Print ISSN 1386-2820.
We can see a number of entities without seeing a determinate number of entities. For example, when we see the speckled hen, we do not see it as having a determinate number of speckles, although we do see it as having a lot of speckles. How is this possible? I suggest a contextualist answer that differs both from Michael Tye's and from Fred Dretske's.
Julio C. Vargas Bejarano, Phänomenologie des Willens. Seine Struktur, sein Ursprung und seine Funktion in Husserls Denken Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s10743-010-9068-4 Authors Henning Peucker, Universität Paderborn Fach Philosophie, Fakultät für Kulturwissenschaften Warburger Str. 100 33098 Paderborn Germany Journal Husserl Studies Online ISSN 1572-8501 Print ISSN 0167-9848 Journal Volume Volume 26 Journal Issue Volume 26, Number 1.
Nothingness addresses one of the most puzzling problems of physics and philosophy: Does empty space have an existence independent of the matter within it? Is "empty space" really empty, or is it an ocean seething with the creation and destruction of virtual matter? With crystal-clear prose and more than 100 cleverly rendered illustrations, physicist Henning Genz takes the reader from the metaphysical speculations of the ancient Greek philosophers, through the theories of Newton and the early experiments of his contemporaries, (...) right up to the current theories of quantum physics and cosmology to give us the story of one of the most fundamental and puzzling areas of modern physics and philosophy. (shrink)
(forthcoming in Analysis) We owe the problem of the speckled hen to Gilbert Ryle. It was suggested to A.J. Ayer by Ryle in connection with Ayer’s account of seeing. Suppose that you are standing before a speckled hen with your eyes trained on it. You are in good light and nothing is obstructing your view. You see the hen in a single glance. The hen has 47 speckles on its facing side, let us say, and the hen ap pears speckled (...) to you. On Ayer’s view, in seeing the hen, you directly see a speckled sense-datum or appearance. Ryle wondered how many speckles there are on the sense-datum. After all, intu itively, the hen does not appear to you to have 47 speckles. And if this is the case, then it does not present to you an appearance with 47 speckles. Equally, however, the hen does not appear to you not to have 47 speckles. So, it does not present an appearance that lacks 47 speckles either. (shrink)
Many epistemologists accept some version of the following foundationalist epistemic principle: if one has an experience as if p then one has prima facie justification that p. I argue that this principle faces a challenge that it inherits from classical foundationalism: the problem of the speckled hen. The crux of the problem is that some properties are presented in experience at a level of determinacy that outstrips our recognitional capacities. I argue for an amendment to the principle that adds to (...) its antecedent the requirement that the subject have a recognitional capacity with respect to the given property. (shrink)
This paper responds to Ernest Sosa's recent criticism of Richard Fumerton's acquaintance theory. Sosa argues that Fumerton's account of non-inferential justification falls prey to the problem of the speckled hen. I argue that Sosa's criticisms are both illuminating and interesting but that Fumerton's theory can escape the problem of the speckled hen. More generally, the paper shows that an internalist account of non-inferential justification can survive the powerful objections of the Sellarsian dilemma and the problem of the speckled hen.
The Problem of the Speckled Hen is a potential stumbling-block for any philosophical treatment of perceptual certainty. Roderick Chisholm argues in the third edition of his Theory of Knowledge (Prentice Hall, 1989) that the Speckled Hen is not a problem for the account of the perceptually certain contained in that book. In this note, I argue that Chisholm’s defense of his account does not work.
It is a crucial question whether practicalities should have an impact in developing an applicable theory of human rights—and if, how (far) such constraints can be justified. In the course of the non-ideal turn of today’s political philosophy, any entitlements (and social entitlements in particular) stand under the proviso of practical feasibility. It would, after all, be unreasonable to demand something which is, under the given political and economic circumstances, unachievable. Thus, many theorist—particularly those belonging to the liberal camp—begin to (...) question the very idea of social human rights on grounds of practical infeasibility. This new minimalism about human rights motivates an immanent critique arguing that even if we were to proceed from a liberal framework, we would still wind up with a justification of the full list of social human rights. In the first part of this article, I will present the central positions of the debate presented by Amartya Sen, Maurice Cranston and Pablo Gilabert. Initially arguing that a minimalism of human rights on grounds of practical infeasibility alone proves unjustifiable, however, I shall open up two further perspectives, which allow practical infeasibilities to become normatively determinate. Discussing contributions by James Griffin and Charles Beitz, I will defend the thesis that certain feasibility constraints on (social) human rights can be justified on the condition that they are grounded either in a normative idea of the appropriate implementation of these rights or in reflection of the practical function of a theory of human rights. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to introduce and defend a revised conception of responsibility - namely, participatory responsibility. It starts from the insight that some pressing problems of global injustice render our common conception of responsibility useless. As an alternative the author mainly discusses Iris Marion Young's social connection model of responsibility. However, Young's approach becomes unconvincing in addressing and weighing specific duties. The author therefore adds a basic rights approach to her conception and argues that mere participation in (...) a basic-rights-violating structure creates superordinated responsibilities for justice. Thus institutions and individual persons hold responsibility not because they have intentionally caused a foreseeable wrong, but because they have participated in, and thereby maintained, a social structure which has morally unacceptable effects. (shrink)
This article is composed of three sections that investigate the epistemological foundations of Husserl’s idea of logic from the Logical Investigations . First, it shows the general structure of this logic. Husserl conceives of logic as a comprehensive, multi-layered theory of possible theories that has its most fundamental level in a doctrine of meaning. This doctrine aims to determine the elementary categories that constitute every possible meaning (meaning-categories). The second section presents the main idea of Husserl’s search for an epistemological (...) foundation for knowledge, science and logic. Their epistemological clarification can only be reached through a detailed analysis of the structure of those intentions that give us what is meant in our intentions. To reveal the intuitive giveness of logical forms is the ultimate aim of Husserl’s epistemology of logic. Logical forms and meaning-categories can only be given in a certain higher-order intuition that Husserl calls categorical intuition. The third section of this article distinguishes different kinds of categorical intuition and shows how the most basic logical categories and concepts are given to us in a categorical abstraction. (shrink)
Free and informed consent is generally acknowledged as the legal andethical basis for living organ donation, but assessments of livingdonors are not always an easy matter. Sometimes it is necessary toinvolve psychosomatics or ethics consultation to evaluate a prospectivedonor to make certain that the requirements for a voluntary andautonomous decision are met. The paper focuses on the conceptualquestions underlying this evaluation process. In order to illustrate howdifferent views of autonomy influence the decision if a donor's offer isethically acceptable, three cases (...) are presented – from Germany, theUnited States, and India. Each case features a person with questionabledecision-making capacity who offered to donate a kidney for a siblingwith severe renal insufficiency. Although the normative framework issimilar in the three countries, different or sometimes even contraryarguments for and against accepting the offer were brought forward. Thesubsequent analysis offers two explanations for the differences inargumentation and outcome in spite of the shared reference to autonomyas the guiding principle: (1) Decisions on the acceptability of a livingdonor cannot simply be deducted from the principle of autonomy but needto integrate contextual information; (2) understandings of the wayautonomy should be contextualized have an important influence on theevaluation of individual cases. Conclusion: Analyzing the conceptualassumptions about autonomy and its relationship to contextual factorscan help in working towards more transparent and better justifieddecisions in the assessment of living organ donors. (shrink)
In this multiple-case study, I analyze the perceived importance of seven categories of institutional entrepreneurs (DiMaggio, Institutional patterns and organizations, Ballinger, Cambridge, MA, 1988 ) for the corporate social responsibility discourse of three multinational companies. With this study, I aim to significantly advance the empirical analysis of the CSR discourse for a better understanding of facts and fiction in the process of institutionalization of CSR in MNCs. I conducted 42 semi-structured face-to-face and phone interviews in two rounds with 30 corporate (...) managers from three multinational companies. The data has been analyzed using qualitative (multiple coding) and quantitative (ANOVA, χ 2 analysis) techniques. The findings indicate that one company is driven by civil society’s influence on consumer’s perception, the second company by direct attacks by civil society, agenda setting organizations and legislators, and the third by the pressure of large customers and legislators. The results suggest that the coping behaviors of MNCs at both extremes of the spectrum of perceived responsible behavior aim at (1) improving the business case for CSR and (2) increasing legitimacy in society, resulting in converging CSR perceptions, and fostering an institutionalization of CSR. (shrink)
„Der sittliche Wert eines Menschen beginnt erst dort, wo er bereit ist, für seine Überzeugung sein Leben zu geben.“ [The moral worth of a human being emerges when she is willing to give her life for her convictions] - Henning von Tresckows -.
This book collects essays from the 2006 and 2007 International Philosophy Colloquia Evian, centred around a central problem in the philosophy of mind: the relationship between the human faculty of sensory experience and the faculty of conceptual reflection, that is self-consciousness. Containing articles by philosophers of eight nationalities, in three languages (English, French, German), and of "analytical" as well as "continental" provenance, it beautifully represents the spirit of the colloquia. Authors include Joshua Andresen (AU Beirut), Valérie Aucouturier (Kent U / (...) U Paris I), Karin de Boer (KU Leuven), Santiago Echeverri (U Genève), Roberto Farneti (LU Bolzano), Tim Henning (JLU Giessen), Felix Koch (Columbia U), Christophe Laudou (Madrid), David Lauer (FU Berlin), Jason Leddington (Bucknell U), Nicolas Monseu (UC Louvain), Soraya Nour (HU Berlin), Hans Bernhard Schmid (U Wien), Henning Tegtmeyer (U Leipzig). (shrink)
This paper argues that Husserl’s ethics do not fit into any one of three commonly recognized kinds of ethical theory: virtue (Aristotelian), deontological (Kantian), and consequentialist (especially, utilitarianism). Husserl’s mature ethical theory, in particular, combines a modern, Kantian or Fichtean approach based on a strong concept of a free and active ego capable of shaping its life autonomously through its own will with a more Aristotelian theory of the virtues that help us to shape our lives in order to reach (...) happiness or eudaimonia. The paper presents a historical overview of Husserl’s writings on ethics, divided into two main periods with distinct emphases. It concludes that, on the one hand, Husserl’s theory of the ethical person clarifies the origin of the virtues in the free activity of the subject, and on the other, it extends the voluntaristic conception of subjectivity to encompass the passively constituted habits. In this way, Husserl combines an Aristotelian-style virtue ethics with modern theories of subjectivity. It is this combination of modern and Aristotelian elements in Husserl’s ethics that makes it a systematically fruitful and promising contribution to ethical theory. (shrink)