Publication ethics is an important aspect of both the research and publication enterprises. It is particularly important in the field of biomedical science because published data may directly affect human health. In this article, we examine publication ethics policies in biomedical journals published in Central and Eastern Europe. We were interested in possible differences between East European countries that are members of the European Union (Eastern EU) and South-East European countries (South-East Europe) that are not members of (...) the European Union.The most common ethical issues addressed by all journals in the region were redundant publication, peer review process, and copyright or licensing details. Image manipulation, editors’ conflicts of interest and registration of clinical trialswere the least common ethical policies. Three aspects were significantly morecommon in journals published outside the EU: statements on the endorsement of international editorial standards, contributorship policy, and image manipulation.On the other hand, copyright or licensing information were more prevalent in journals published in the Eastern EU. The existence of significant differences amongbiomedical journals’ ethical policies calls for further research and active measuresto harmonize policies across journals. On the other hand, copyright or licensing information were more prevalent in journals published in the Eastern EU. The existence of significant differences among biomedical journals’ ethical policies calls for further research and active measures to harmonize policies across journals. (shrink)
It is by now no secret that some scientific articles are ghost authored – that is, written by someone other than the person whose name appears at the top of the article. Ghost authorship, however, is only one sort of ghosting. In this article, we present evidence that pharmaceutical companies engage in the ghost management of the scientific literature, by controlling or shaping several crucial steps in the research, writing, and publication of scientific articles. Ghost management allows the pharmaceutical (...) industry to shape the literature in ways that serve its interests. This article aims to reinforce and expand publication ethics as an important area of concern for bioethics. Since ghost-managed research is primarily undertaken in the interests of marketing, large quantities of medical research violate not just publication norms but also research ethics. Much of this research involves human subjects, and yet is performed not primarily to increase knowledge for broad human benefit, but to disseminate results in the service of profits. Those who sponsor, manage, conduct, and publish such research therefore behave unethically, since they put patients at risk without justification. This leads us to a strong conclusion: if medical journals want to ensure that the research they publish is ethically sound, they should not publish articles that are commercially sponsored. (shrink)
Peer review and publication is one of the factors proposed in Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as indicia of the reliability of scientific testimony. This Article traces the origins of the peer-review system, the process by which it became standard at scientific and medical journals, and the many roles it now plays. Additionally, the Author articulates the epistemological rationale for pre-publication peer-review and the inherent limitations of the system as a scientific quality-control mechanism. The Article explores recent (...) changes in science, in scientific publishing, and in the academy that have put the system under strain. The Author argues that Justice Blackmun's advice to courts - that peer-reviewed publication is relevant, but is not dispositive - is of little practical help. Instead, the Author suggests questions that courts should ask in assessing the significance of the fact that testimony is, or is not, based on peer-reviewed publication and illustrates with reference to another Bendectin case, Blum v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where some of these questions were asked. (shrink)
Publication ethics, an important subtopic of science ethics, deals with determination of the misconducts of science in performing research or in the dissemination of ideas, data and products. Science, the main features of which are secure, reliable and ethically obtained data, plays a major role in shaping the society. As long as science maintains its quality by being based on reliable and ethically obtained data, it will be possible to maintain its role in shaping the society. This article is (...) devoted to the presentation of opinions of PhD candidate students in health sciences in Ankara concerning publication ethics. The data obtained from 143 PhD students from the fields of medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and veterinary reveal limited but unique experiences. It also shows that plagiarism is one of the worst issues in the publication ethics from the perspective of these young academics. (shrink)
Research publication and dissemination of scholarly knowledge in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are among the most influential roles of many academic scholars in both industrialised and developing nations, but such experience and skills are rarely taught, transferred and shared in the real world. Dealing with issues of research misconduct might be challenging as well as learning opportunities for new academics while conducting research and scholarship teaching and publication in HEIs. In this review paper, I will discuss some concepts (...) of research misconduct, highlighting some relevant ethical and legal concerns in publication. This paper concludes that continued education and support on ethical research to graduates and scholars might help to prevent research misconduct related to publications and dissemination through developing appropriate strategies in practice. (shrink)
Publication planning is the sub-industry to the pharmaceutical industry that does the organizational and practical work of shaping pharmaceutical companies' data and turning it into medical journal articles. Its main purpose is to create and communicate scientific information to support the marketing of products. This report is based mostly on information presented at the 2007 annual meeting of the International Society of Medical Planning Professionals, including a workshop entitled "Publication Planning 101/201", attended by one of us. We provide (...) some analysis of the role of publication planning in medical publishing, and its implications for the structuring of medical knowledge. (shrink)
The documented low levels of reliability of the peer review process present a serious challenge to editors who must often base their publication decisions on conflicting referee recommendations. The purpose of this article is to discuss this process and examine ways to produce a more reliable and useful peer review system.
Scientific societies can have a powerful influence on the professional lives of scientists. Using this influence, they have a responsibility to make long-term commitments and investments in promoting integrity in publication, just as in other areas of research ethics. Concepts that can inform the thinking and activities of scientific societies with regard to publication ethics are: the “hidden curriculum” (the message of actions rather than formal statements), a fresh look at the components of acting with integrity, deviancy as (...) a normally occurring phenomenon in human society, and the scientific community as an actual community. A society’s first step is to decide what values it will promote, within the framework of present-day standards of good conduct of science and given the society’s history and traditions. The society then must create educational programs that serve members across their careers. Scientific societies must take seriously the implications of the problem; set policies and standards for publication ethics for their members; educate about and enforce the standards; bring the issues before the members early and often; and maintain continuing dialogue with editors. (shrink)
The growing emphasis on the importance of publishing scientific findings in the academic world has led to increasing prevalence of potentially significant publications in which scientific and ethical rigour may be questioned. This has not only hindered research progress, but also eroded public trust in all scientific advances. In view of the increasing concern and the complexity of research misconduct, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) was established in 1997 to manage cases with ethical implications. In order to review (...) the outcomes of cases investigated by COPE, a total of 408 cases that had been managed by COPE were successfully extracted and analysed with respect to 7 distinct criteria. The results obtained indicate that the number of ethical implications per case has not changed significantly (p > 0.01) since the year COPE was instigated. Interestingly, the number of ethical cases, and to some extent, research misconduct, is not diminishing. Therefore, journal editors and publishers need to work closely together with COPE to inculcate adoption of appropriate research ethics and values in younger researchers while discouraging others from lowering standards. It is hoped that with a more concerted effort from the academic community and better public awareness, there will be fewer incidences of ethically and scientifically challenged publications. The ultimate aim being to enhance the quality of published works with concomittant public trust in the results. (shrink)
Redundant publication in biomedical sciences is the presentation of the same information or data set more than once. Forms of redundant publication include “salami slicing”, in which similar text accompanies data presented in disaggregated fashion in different publications and “duplicate or multiple publication” in which identical information is presented with a virtually identical text. Estimates of prevalence of the phenomenon put it at 10 to 25% of published literature. Redundant publication can be considered unethical, or fraudulent, (...) when the author(s) attempt to conceal the existence of duplicate publication from editors and readers. Redundant publication in the area of clinical trials is potentially dangerous as it tends to overestimate the effects of interventions. The scientific community at large and governments should take urgent steps to safeguard the public from the possible effects of fraudulent multiple publications. (shrink)
What happens when the scientific tradition of openness clashes with potential societal risks? The work of American toxic-exposure epidemiologists can attract media coverage and lead the public to change health practices, initiate lawsuits, or take other steps a study’s authors might consider unwarranted. This paper, reporting data from 61 semi-structured interviews with U.S. toxic-exposure epidemiologists, examines whether such possibilities shaped epidemiologists’ selection of journals for potentially sensitive papers. Respondents manifested strong support for the norm of scientific openness, but a significant (...) minority had or would/might, given the right circumstances, publish sensitive data in less visible journals, so as to prevent unwanted media or public attention. Often, even those advocating such limited “burial” upheld openness, claiming that less visible publication allowed them to avoid totally withholding the data from publication. However, 15% of the sample had or would, for the most sensitive types of data, withhold publication altogether. Rather than respondents explaining their actions in terms of an expected split between “pure science” and “social advocacy” models, even those publishing in the more visible journals often described their actions in terms of their “responsibility”. Several practical limitations (particularly involving broader access to scientific literature via the Internet) of the strategy of burial are discussed, and some recommendations are offered for scientists, the media, and the public. (shrink)
Background: Publication of ethically uncertain research occurs despite well-published guidelines set forth in documents such as the Declaration of Helsinki. Such guidelines exist to aide editorial staff in making decisions regarding ethical acceptability of manuscripts submitted for publication, yet examples of ethically suspect and uncertain publication exist. Our objective was to survey journal editors regarding practices and attitudes surrounding such dilemmas. Methods: The Editor-in-chief of each of the 103 English-language journals from the 2005 Abridged Index Medicus list (...) publishing original research were asked to complete a survey sent to them by email between September-December 2007. Results: A response rate of 33% (n = 34) was obtained from the survey. 18% (n = 6) of respondents had published ethically uncertain or suspect research within the last 10 years. 85% (n = 29) of respondents stated they would always reject ethically uncertain articles submitted for publication on ethical grounds alone. 12% (n = 4) of respondents stated they would approach each submission on a case-by-case basis. 3% (n = 1) stated they would be likely to publish such research, but only with accompanying editorial. Only 38% (n = 13) give reviewers explicit instruction to reject submissions on ethical grounds if found wanting. Conclusions: Editorial compliance with the Declaration of Helsinki in rejecting research that is conducted unethically was difficult to ascertain because of a poor response rate despite multiple attempts using different modalities. Of those who did respond, the majority do reject ethically suspect research but few explicitly advise reviewers to do so. In this study editors did not take advantage of the opportunity to describe their support for the rejection of the publication of unethical research. (shrink)
This paper discusses ethics in the context of Aboriginal Studies. Taking the example of a late-nineteenth century missionary work, a collection of out-of-print Mi’kmaq stories, it examines the ethical implications of the potential re-publication of such a text. It is argued that the Baptist missionary Silas T. Rand, who translated and transcribed the narratives, did his work from a Eurocentric perspective. The biases of a colonial ideology built into his translations/interpretations which are often quoted as authoritative would be further (...) perpetuated if his work is republished without critical commentary. As Aboriginal oral traditions generally form the basis of Aboriginal cultures and contemporary Aboriginal literatures but have been demeaned for centuries thereby further colonizing the peoples, an edition of Rand’s work informed by a postcolonial ethics is crucial. The paper therefore concludes with the suggestion that the stories collected by the missionary should be repatriated in the respective Mi’kmaq communities in a way that the people can decide how to go about their publication (if they want them published at all). A non-Aboriginal scholar may facilitate the process but should follow the directions of the communities. (shrink)
The similarity of documents in a large database of published Fractals articles was examined for redundancy. Three different text matching techniques were used on published Abstracts to identify redundancy candidates, and predictions were verified by reading full text versions of the redundancy candidate articles. A small fraction of the total articles in the database was judged to be redundant. This was viewed as a lower limit, because it excluded cases where the concepts remained the same, but the text was altered (...) substantially. Far more pervasive than redundant publications were publications that did not violate the letter of redundancy but rather violated the spirit of redundancy. There appeared to be widespread publication maximization strategies. Studies that resulted in one comprehensive paper decades ago now result in multiple papers that focus on one major problem, but are differentiated by parameter ranges, or other stratifying variables. This ‘paper inflation’ is due in large part to the increasing use of metrics (publications, patents, citations, etc) to evaluate research performance, and the researchers’ motivation to maximize the metrics. (shrink)
Examination of a limited number of publisher’s Instructions for Authors, guidelines from two scientific societies, and the widely accepted policy document of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) provided useful information on authorship practices. Three of five journals examined (Nature, Science, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) publish papers across a variety of disciplines. One is broadly focused on topics in medical research (New England Journal of Medicine) and one publishes research reports in a single (...) discipline (Journal of Bacteriology). Similar elements of publication policy and accepted practices were found across the policies of these journals articulated in their Instructions for Authors. A number of these same elements were found in the professional society guidelines of the Society for Neuroscience and the American Chemical Society, as well as the ICMJE Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals. Taken together, these sources provide the basis for articulating best practices in authorship in scientific research. Emerging from this material is a definition of authorship, as well as policy statements on duplicative publication, conflict of interest disclosure, electronic access, data sharing, digital image integrity, and research requiring subjects’ protection, including prior registration of clinical trials. These common elements provide a foundation for teaching about scientific authorship and publication practices across biomedical and life sciences disciplines. (shrink)
The purpose of the study was to assess medical journals’ conflicts of interest in the publication of book reviews. We examined book reviews published in 1999, 2000, and 2001 (N=1,876) in five leading medical journals: Annals of Internal Medicine, British Medical Journal (BMJ), Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Lancet, and New England Journal of Medicine. The main outcome measure was journal publication of reviews of books that had been published by the journal’s own publisher, that had (...) been edited or authored by a lead editor of the journal, or that posed another conflict of interest. We also surveyed the editors-in-chief of the five journals about their policies on these conflicts of interests. During the study period, four of the five journals published 30 book reviews presenting a conflict of interest: nineteen by the BMJ, five by the Annals, four by JAMA, and two by the Lancet. These reviews represent 5.8%, 2.7%, 0.7%, and 0.7%, respectively, of all book reviews published by the journals. These four journals, respectively, published reviews of 11.9%, 25.0%, 0.9%, and 1.0% of all medical books published by the journals’ publishers. Only one of the 30 book reviews included a disclosure statement addressing the conflict of interest. None of the journals had a written policy pertaining to the conflicts of interest assessed in this study, although four reported having unwritten policies. We recommend that scientific journals and associations representing journal editors develop policies on conflicts of interest pertaining to book reviews. (shrink)
In 2000, the world of anthropology was rocked by a high-profile debate over the fieldwork performed by two prominent anthropologists, Napoleon Chagnon and James V. Neel, among the Yanamamo tribe of South America. The controversy was fueled by the publication of Patrick Tierney's incendiary Darkness in El Dorado which accused Chagnon of not only misinterpreting but actually inciting some of the violence he perceived among these "fierce people". Tierney also pointed the finger at Neel as the unwitting agent of (...) a deadly measles outbreak. Attracting a firestorm of attention, Tierney's book went straight to the heart of anthropology's most pressing questions: What are the right ways to study a tribal people? How can scientists avoid unduly influencing those among whom they live? What guidelines should govern the interactions - economic, social, medical, and sexual - between a scientist in the field and the people being studied? This volume represents anthropology's thoughtful, measured reply to the issues raised by this heated controversy. Placing the dispute within the context of ongoing debates over the ethics of biomedical research among human populations, the contributors to this volume discuss how the interaction between investigators and their subjects can most sensibly be governed. They consider the responsibility of the media in disseminating anti-scientific and pseudo-scientific views, and how scientists might best educate journalists to enable them to effectively educate others. In the wake of what was widely construed as a major scientific scandal, this landmark volume lays out in detail the principles and ground rules of anthropological and scientific fieldwork. (shrink)
This study examines the effects of publication of financial statements, the risk of a takeover of the auditee and the auditee's financial position on auditors' willingness to allow material errors in financial statements in case of management pressure. The results show that all factors significantly influence auditors' willingness to allow errors in financial statements.
An historical review of authorship definitions and publication practices that are embedded in directions to authors and in the codes of ethics in the fields of psychology, sociology, and education illuminates reasonable agreement and consistency across the fields with regard to (a) originality of the work submitted, (b) data sharing, (c) human participants’ protection, and (d) conflict of interest disclosure. However, the role of the professional association in addressing violations of research or publication practices varies among these fields. (...) Psychology and sociology provide active oversight with sanction authority. In education, the association assumes a more limited role: to develop and communicate standards to evoke voluntary compliance. With respect to authorship credit, each association’s standards focus on criteria for inclusion as an author, other than on the author’s ability to defend and willingness to take responsibility for the entire work. Discussions across a broad range of research disciplines beyond the social sciences would likely be beneficial. Whether improved standards will reduce either misattribution or perceptions of inappropriate attribution of credit within social science disciplines will likely depend on how well authorship issues are addressed in responsible conduct of research education (RCR), in research practice, and in each association’s ongoing efforts to influence normative practice by specifying and clarifying best practices. (shrink)
One of the important causes of bias in the medical literature is failure to publish data because it is “negative”. Usually, this is due to failure to write a manuscript and submit it for publication. Since publication is an essential part of research and patients have been recruited into a study in the belief that they are participating in medical research, there is an ethical commitment to publish the observations made on volunteer subjects. This can be enforced by (...) ethical committees if they refuse to approve studies of investigators and sponsors who have failed to publish earlier studies. (shrink)
The pressure for publication is ever present in academe. Rules for submission are elucidated by conferences, proceedings and journals for the benefit of authors; however, the rules for reviewers and editors are not so well established or consistent. This treatise examines examples of abuse of the editorial process and points to a need for formal recognition of rules for review. The manuscript culminates with proposed Codes of Ethics for researchers, referees and editors and suggestions for improvement of the peer (...) review process. (shrink)
Purpose: This section lists publications related to constructivist approaches – constructivism, second-order cybernetics, enactivism, non-dualism, biology of cognition, etc. – that recently have been published elsewhere, and which the reader of the journal might find interesting. Content: The entries are ordered alphabetically and clustered according to their respective primary disciplinary backgrounds. How to contribute: To have your constructivism-related publications listed in this section, send an email to ariegler at vub.ac.be. Please format your list in the same way as the entries (...) in this section. Add information about the disciplinary background, the abstract (which should describe the link to constructivist approaches), and, optionally, a URL that points to the full-text version. For more information, visit http://www.constructivistfoundations.info/bib/. (shrink)
Background Financial relationships between physicians and industry are extensive and public reporting of industry payments to physicians is now occurring. Our objectives were to describe physician recipients of large total payments from these seven companies, and to examine discrepancies between these payments and conflict of interest (COI) disclosures in authors’ concurrent publications. Methods The investigative journalism organization, ProPublica, compiled the Dollars for Docs database of payments to individuals from publically available data from seven US pharmaceutical companies during the period 2009 (...) to 2010. We examined the cohort of 373 physicians in this database who each received USD $100,000 or more in the reporting period 2009 to 2010. Results These physicians received a total of $52,600,624 during this period (mean payment per physician $141,020). The predominant specialties were internal medicine and psychiatry. 147 of these physicians authored a total of 134 publications in the first quarter of 2011 and 77% (103) of these publications provided a COI disclosure. 69% of the 103 publications did not contain disclosures of the payment listed in the Dollars for Docs database. Conclusions With increased public reporting of industry payments to physicians, it is apparent that large sums are being paid for services such as consulting and peer education. In over two-thirds of publications where COI disclosures were provided, the disclosures by physician authors did not include industry payments that were documented in the Dollars for Docs database. (shrink)
According to the “internal” conception (Quong), political liberalism aims to be publicly justifiable only to people who are reasonable in a special sense specified and advocated by political liberalism itself. One advantage of the internal conception allegedly is that it enables liberalism to avoid perfectionism. The paper takes issue with this view. It argues that once the internal conception is duly pitched at its fundamental, metatheoretical level and placed in its proper discursive context, it emerges that it comes at the (...) cost of public dogma. The paper examines this problem and argues that a plausible response to this problem is to go beyond the internal conception and adopt a more inclusive, dynamic conception. But this calls for a form of perfectionism. Thus, the internal conception of political liberalism, far from showing how liberalism can be had without perfectionism, effectively calls for perfectionism as a remedy for its problems. (shrink)
It has become increasingly difficult to distinguish public health from related fields like social work. I argue that we should reclaim the more traditional conception of public health as the provision of health-related public goods. The public goods account has the advantage of establishing a relatively clear and distinctive mission for public health. It also allows a consensus of people with different comprehensive moral and political commitments to endorse public health measures, even if they disagree about precisely why they are (...) desirable. (shrink)
It is often claimed that there is an obesity epidemic in affluent countries, and that obesity is one of the most serious public health threats in the developed world. I will argue that obesity is not an 'epidemic' in any useful sense of the word, and that classifying it as a public health problem requires us to make fairly controversial moral and empirical assumptions. While epidemiological evidence suggests that the prevalence of obesity is on the rise, and that obesity can (...) lead to serious health problems ranging from diabetes to cardiovascular disease, this does not by itself show that obesity is a public health problem. (shrink)
Multiculturalism requires sustained and serious philosophical reflection, which in turn requires public outreach and communication. This piece briefly outlines concerns raised by the philosophy of multiculturalism and, conversely, multiculturalism in philosophy, which ultimately force us to reconsider the philosopher’s own role and responsibility. I conclude with a provocative suggestion of philosophy as /public diplomacy/. (As this is intended to be a piece for a general audience, secondary literature is only referred to in the conclusion. References gladly provided upon request.).
The critic Cyril Connolly once pointed out that diarists don’t make novelists. He went on to describe the problem for the would-be writer. “Writing for oneself: no public. Writing for others: no privacy” (Cyril Connolly, Journal). This paper addresses Connolly's worry about the public ad private: how can we reconcile the inner and conscious dimension of speech with its outer and public dimension? For if what people mean by their words involves, or consists in, what they have in mind when (...) they speak then how can what someone has in mind — the meaning she attaches to her words — be at the same time publicly accessible to others on the basis of her behaviour? The issue is whether there is a notion of the linguistic meaning of an expression that can do justice to both speakers’ inner experience of comprehension and to what is outwardly available in their public practice. (shrink)
....a notion of 'common, public language' that remains mysterious...useless for any form of theoretical explanation....There is simply no way of making sense of this prong of the externalist theory of meaning and language, as far as I can see, or of any of the work in theory of meaning and philosophy of language that relies on such notions, a statement that is intended to cut rather a large swath. (Chomsky 1995, pp. 48-9) It is a striking fact that despite the (...) constant reliance on some notion of 'community language' or 'abstract language,' there is virtually no attempt to explain what it might be. (Chomsky 1993, p. 39) ....either we must deprive the notion communication of all significance, or else we must reject the view that the purpose of language is communication. ...It is difficult to say what 'the purpose' of language is, except, perhaps, the expression of thought, a rather empty formulation. The functions of language are various. (Chomsky 1980, p. 230) I have yet to see a formulation that makes any sense of the position that "the essence of language is communication." (Chomsky 1980, p. 80; see also 1992b, p 215). (shrink)
First-person data have been both condemned and hailed because of their alleged privacy. Critics argue that science must be based on public evidence: since first-person data are private, they should be banned from science. Apologists reply that first-person data are necessary for understanding the mind: since first-person data are private, scientists must be allowed to use private evidence. I argue that both views rest on a false premise. In psychology and neuroscience, the subjects issuing first-person reports and other sources of (...) first-person data play the epistemic role of a (self-) measuring instrument. Data from measuring instruments are public and can be validated by public methods. Therefore, first-person data are as public as other scientific data: their use in science is legitimate, in accordance with standard scientific methodology. (shrink)
This paper introduces the concept of collective intentionality and shows its relevance when we seek to understand public management. Social ontology – particularly its leading concept, collective intentionality – provides critical insights into public organisations. The paper sets out the some of the epistemological limitations of cultural theories and takes as its example of these the group-grid theory of Douglas and Hood. It then draws upon Brentano, Husserl and Searle to show the ontological character of public management. Modern public institutions (...) – such as advisory organisations and service delivery agencies, including schools and universities – are expressions of human collective intentionality. The central concept within these institutions, as a phenomenology reveals, is cooperation. Public institutions are natural structures that emerge from our evolutionary ancestry as cooperative animals and enduringly display all the features of that ancestry. (shrink)
Our concern in this essay are the roles of religious conviction in what we call a “publicly justified polity” — one in which the laws conform to the Principle of Public Justification, according to which (in a sense that will become clearer) each citizen must have conclusive reason to accept each law as binding. According to “justificatory liberalism,”1 this public justification requirement follows from the core liberal commitment of respect for the freedom and equality of all citizens.2 To respect each (...) as free and equal requires that no one simply be forced to submit to the judgments of others as to what she must do. Laws must be justified to those subject to them — each must accept grounds that justify the law. As Kant indicated, if such a condition is achieved, each is both subject and legislator: each is subject to the law, yet each legislates the law, and so all our free and equal under the law.3 Now it would appear that if we are to justify laws to each and every person, the reasons for these laws must be “accessible to all.”4 Religious reasons, however, are not shared by everyone, and may be inaccessible to some: they would thereby seem inappropriate in public justification. On the face of it, justificatory liberals seem committed to expunging religious-based reasoning from political justification. Not surprisingly, this apparent commitment of justificatory liberalism is adamantly rejected by many citizens of faith who consider themselves liberals. These citizens embrace the traditional liberal freedoms and rights and, moreover, reject any suggestion that a legitimate polity might seek to establish a religion, much less a theocracy. Yet they.. (shrink)
In this article, I seek to make sense of the oft-invoked idea of 'public emergency' and of some of its (supposedly) radical moral implications. I challenge controversial claims by Tom Sorell, Michael Walzer, and Giorgio Agamben, and argue for a more discriminating understanding of the category and its moral force.
A traditional view is that scientific evidence can be produced only by intersubjective methods that can be used by different investigators and will produce agreement. This intersubjectivity, or publicity, constraint ostensibly excludes introspection. But contemporary cognitive scientists regularly rely on their subjects' introspective reports in many areas, especially in the study of consciousness. So there is a tension between actual scientific practice and the publicity requirement. Which should give way? This paper argues against the publicity requirement and against a fallback (...) version of it, viz. that evidence-conferring methods must at least have their reliability publicly validated. (shrink)
Christine Korsgaard has argued recently that the thesis that reasons are "essentially public" undermines the distinction between agent-neutral and agent-relative reasons, thus refuting egoism by rejecting its commitment to the universal availability of agent-relative reasons. I conclude that Korsgaard's invocation of the essential publicity of reasons trades on ambiguities concerning the "sharing" of reasons and so does not refute egoism and does not ground moral normativity. Her account of the publicity of reasons shows that solipsism is incoherent, but the egoist (...) need not be a solipsist, nor is she an incompetent user of moral language or the language of reasons. (shrink)
In this paper, I assess Martha Nussbaum's application of the capabilities approach to non-human animals for both its philosophical merits and its potential to affect public policy. I argue that there are currently three main philosophical problems with the theory that need further attention. After discussing these problems, I show how focusing on factory farming would enable Nussbaum to demonstrate the philosophical merits of the capabilities approach as well as to suggest more powerful and effectives changes in our public policies.
No natural rights theory justifies strong intellectual property rights. More specifically, no theory within the entire domain of natural rights thinking – encompassing classical liberalism, libertarianism and left-libertarianism, in all their innumerable variants – coherently supports strengthening current intellectual property rights. Despite their many important differences, all these natural rights theories endorse some set of members of a common family of basic ethical precepts. These commitments include non-interference, fairness, non-worsening, consistency, universalisability, prior consent, self-ownership, self-governance, and the establishment of zones (...) of autonomy. Such commitments have clear applications pertaining to the use and ownership of created ideas. I argue that each of these commitments require intellectual property rights to be substantially limited in scope, strength and duration. In this way the core mechanisms of natural rights thinking ensure a robust public domain and categorically rule out strong intellectual property rights. (shrink)
What motivated an absolutist Erastian who rejected religious freedom, defended uniform public worship, and deemed the public expression of disagreement a catalyst for war to endorse a movement known to history as the champion of toleration, no coercion in religion, and separation of church and state? At least three factors motivated Hobbes’s 1651 endorsement of Independency: the Erastianism of Cromwellian Independency, the influence of the politique tradition, and, paradoxically, the contribution of early-modern practices of toleration to maintaining the public sphere’s (...) religious uniformity. The third factor illustrates how a key function of the emerging private sphere in the early-modern period was to protect uniformity, rather than diversity; it also shows that what was novel was not so much the public/private distinction itself, but the separation of two previously conflated dimensions of publicity – visibility and representativeness – that enabled early-modern Europeans to envisage modes of worship out in the open, yet still private. (shrink)
This collection of new essays derives from a conference sponsored by the Royal Institute of Philosophy and the Centre of Philosophy and Public Affairs at the University of St Andrews. It brings together a number of prominent academics from the fields of philosophy and political theory along with politicians and social commentators. The subjects covered include liberalism, education, welfare policy, religion, art and culture, and cloning. The mix of contributors and the topicality of the subject matter should further promote a (...) serious engagement between philosophy and public life. (shrink)
Preface -- Part I : Mastering the basics. The importance of public relations : Case: UPS faces losses in Teamster's union strike ; What is public relations? ; Models and approaches to public relations ; Public relations as a management function -- Part II : Organizations and processes. Organizational factors contributing to excellent public relations ; How public relations contributes to organizational effectiveness ; Identifying and prioritizing stakeholders and publics ; Public relations research: the key to strategy ; The public (...) relations process: RACE -- Part III : The practice and best practices. The practice of public relations ; Ethics, leadership and counseling roles, and moral analyses ; Best practices for excellence in public relations -- Notes -- References -- Index. (shrink)
Listening closely to the religious pitch in Rousseau's voice, Cladis convincingly shows that Rousseau, when attempting to portray the most characteristic aspects of the public and private, reached for a religious vocabulary. Honoring both love of self and love of that which is larger than the self--these twin poles, with all the tension between them--mark Rousseau's work, vision and challenge--the challenge of 21st-century democracy.
We develop and defend a distinction between two types of self-censorship: public and private. First, we suggest that public self-censorship refers to a range of individual reactions to a public censorship regime. Second, private self-censorship is the suppression by an agent of his or her own attitudes where a public censor is either absent or irrelevant. The distinction is derived from a descriptive approach to self-censorship that asks: who is the censor, who is the censee, and how do they interact? (...) We label situations in which censor and censee are different agents as public self-censorship, and situations in which they are the same agents as private self-censorship. We demonstrate the salience of this distinction by analysing the case of publication of Mohammed cartoons by the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten. Our analysis reveals the presence and interaction of a number of different instances of private and public self-censorship. While our article is primarily concerned with establishing this novel descriptive distinction between public and private self-censorship, our analysis has important evaluative implications. We explain for instance how Jyllands-Posten was laudable as a public self-censor but not so as a private self-censor. In general, our analysis reveals that the agents and processes involved in public and private self-censorship are substantively different, as are the agents to whom normative principles regarding censorship should be applied. In particular, principles of free speech do not apply to the case of private self-censorship, because while an instance of censorship, the absence of an external censor makes the censorship non-coercive. (shrink)
Commercial public opinion polling is an increasingly important element in practically all elections in democratic countries around the world. Poll results and pollsters are relatively new and autonomous voices in our human communities. Here I try to connect such polling directly to morality and democratic processes. Several arguments have been and might be used for and against banning such polling during elections, i.e., for and against effectively silencing these voices. I present the arguments on both sides of this issue, and (...) try to show that there are reasonable responses to all the arguments in favour of banning polls. Then I review some proposed Canadian legislation concerning banning polls and, alternatively, requiring disclosure of methodological features of polls. Finally, I offer a model set of disclosure standards for the publication of poll results during election campaigns. (shrink)
In terms of income and wealth (and a variety of other measures), citizens of the United States are significantly less equal than their peers in Canada and Europe. In addition, American society is becoming increasingly less equal. Some theorists argue that this inequality is inefficient. Others claim that is unjust. Many Americans, however, are less concerned with the potential inefficiency and injustice of growing inequality. Distinguishing as Milton Friedman does between equality of result and equality of opportunity, many claim that (...) American inequality is greater because our social and political institutions hold individuals responsible for their decisions. There is nothing unjust about holding individuals responsible for their choices or preferences. This political philosophy builds from the popular idea that, in the words of Dennis Prager of the Heritage Foundation, “American individualism and the Judeo-Christian notion of personal accountability gave us the extraordinary nation that we built here.” At least since the publication of the Republican Party’s Contract with America, every prominent Republican (and many Democrats) has affirmed the importance of personal responsibility. The idea of personal responsibility plays a central role in debates over how to structure U.S. society. For these reasons, this paper considers a group of theories that Elizabeth Anderson labels “luck egalitarian.” These theories remain the most influential philosophical attempts to incorporate personal responsibility into a theory of justice. This essay takes as its staring point Anderson’s widely discussed criticisms for these theorists, and considers several of the best and most sustained responses to these criticisms (and related claims by Samuel Scheffler, Jonathan Wolff, and others). The goal is not to provide a summary of different luck egalitarian accounts of justice, a task others have performed admirably (Knight 2009, Knight and Stemplowska 2011). Furthermore, this paper will not attempt to decide which luck egalitarian theory best withstands these criticisms. Instead, this paper makes a philosophically and empirically informed case regarding how policy makers ought to utilize a principle that plays a prominent role in current American public policy debates: the role of personal responsibility. In order to make this case, I must weave normative and empirical analysis, and consider the ways in which social position in the status quo United States does not trace personal responsibility. From this analysis, I suggest three policy priorities for those interested in redeeming the oft-celebrated claim about American society: that an individual is responsible for her social position. This work promises to be of interest to any theorist or policy maker concerned with the practical implications of recent work in the moral and political philosophy of personal responsibility, or, really, anyone interested in making American society comparatively just. (shrink)
Plan-ahead becomes necessary for those movements which are over-and-done in less time than it takes for the feedback loop to operate. Natural selection for one of the ballistic movements (hammering, clubbing, and throwing) could evolve a plan-ahead serial buffer for hand-arm commands that would benefit the other ballistic movements as well. This same circuitry may also sequence other muscles (children learning handwriting often screw up their faces and tongues) and so novel oral-facial sequences may also benefit (as might kicking and (...) dancing). An elaborated version of the sequencer may constitute a Darwin Machine that spins scenarios, evolves sentences, and facilitates insight by offline simulation. An example is given of an evolutionary scenario from an apelike ancestor, demonstrating the transition behaviors and growth curve considerations that any such theory needs to have; this particular scenario (involving throwing improvements) also suggests an explanation for the puzzling design of the Acheulean "handaxe.". (shrink)
A social scientific survey on visions of human/nature relationships in western Europe shows that the public clearly distinguishes not only between anthropocentrism and ecocentrism, but also between two nonanthropocentric types of thought, which may be called “partnership with nature” and “participation in nature.” In addition, the respondents distinguish a form of human/nature relationship that is allied to traditional stewardship but has a more ecocentric content, labeled here as “guardianship of nature.” Further analysis shows that the general public does not subscribe (...) to an ethic of “mastery over nature.” Instead, practically all respondents embrace the image of guardianship, while the more radical relationships of partnership and participation also received significant levels of adherence. The results imply that ethicists should no longer assume that the ethics of the public are merely anthropocentric. Finally, they call into question the idea of a single form of ecocentrism and favor a hermeneutic virtue ethics approach to the study of the interface between ethics and action. (shrink)
This paper is about how best to understand the notion of ‘public wrongs’ in the longstanding idea that crimes are public wrongs. By contrasting criminal law with the civil laws of torts and contracts, it argues that ‘public wrongs’ should not be understood merely as wrongs that properly concern the public, but more specifically as those which the state, as the public, ought to punish. It then briefly considers the implications that this has on criminalization.
Public justification-based accounts of liberal legitimacy rely on the idea that a polity’s basic structure should, in some sense, be acceptable to its citizens. In this paper I discuss the prospects of that approach through the lens of Gerald Gaus’ critique of John Rawls’ paradigmatic account of democratic public justification. I argue that Gaus does succeed in pointing out some significant problems for Rawls’ political liberalism; yet his alternative, justificatory liberalism, is not voluntaristic enough to satisfy the desiderata of a (...) genuinely democratic theory of public justification. Moreover I contend that — pace Gaus — rather than simply amending political liberalism, the claims of justificatory liberalism cast serious doubts on the sustainability of the project of grounding liberal-democratic legitimacy through the idea of public justification. (shrink)
Shambhala: Why this intense interest in you as a person? We typed in "Ken Wilber" in the search engine Excite, and there were 363,000 entries. If you read 100 a day, it would take you ten years to read everything about you on the Net. Why this interest?
The individual management of online identity, as part of a wider politics of personal information, privacy, and dataveillance, is an area where public policy is developing and where the public sector attempts to intervene. This paper attempts to understand the strategies and methods through which the UK government and public sector is engaging in online identity management. The analysis is framed by the analytics of government (Dean 2010) and governmentality (Miller and Rose 2008). This approach draws attention to the wide (...) assemblage of public and private actors with shared regimes of practice and fields of visibility, as well as to the extent to which individual actors are made responsible for their own identity management. The paper also uses communication and discursive research to examine the potential failings of engagement efforts. Communication theory suggested that the assumption of individual responsibility, alongside linguistic distortions created by this way of understanding the problematic of identity management, complicate and fundamentally limit engagement activity. (shrink)
This article looks at the ethical quandaries, and their social and political context, which emerge as a result of international nuclear waste substitution. In particular it addresses the dilemmas inherent within the proposed return of nuclear waste owned by Japanese nuclear companies and currently stored in the United Kingdom. The UK company responsible for this waste, British Nuclear Fuels Limited (BNFL), wish to substitute this high volume intermediate-level Japanese-owned radioactive waste for a much lower volume of much more highly radioactive (...) waste. Special focus is given to ethical problems that they, and the UK government, have not wished to address as they move forward with waste substitution. The conclusion is that waste substitution can only be considered an ethical practice if a set of moderating conditions are observed by all parties. These conditions are listed and, as of yet, they are not being observed. (shrink)
Healthcare counts as a morally relevant good whose distribution should neither be left to the free market nor be simply imposed by governmental decisions without further justification. This problem is particularly prevalent in the current boom of anti-ageing medicine. While the public demand for medical interventions which promise a longer, healthier and more active and attractive life has been increasing, public healthcare systems usually do not cover these products and services, thus leaving their allocation to the mechanisms of supply and (...) demand on the free market. This situation raises the question on which basis the underlying preferences for and claims to a longer, healthier life should be evaluated. What makes anti-ageing medicine eligible for public funding? In this article, we discuss the role of anti-ageing medicine with regard to the scope and limits of public healthcare. We will first briefly sketch the basic problem of justifying a particular healthcare scheme within the framework of a modern liberal democracy, focusing on the challenge anti-ageing interventions pose in this regard. In the next section, we will present and discuss three possible solutions to the problem, essentialistic, transcendental, and procedural strategies of defining the scope of public healthcare. We will suggest a procedural solution adopting essentialistic and transcendental elements and discuss its theoretical and practical implications with regard to anti-ageing medicine. (shrink)
This collection of essays by Sheila Jasanoff explores how democratic governments construct public reason, that is, the forms of evidence and argument used in making state decisions accountable to citizens.
Is it ever permissible to publish a patient’s confidences without permission? I investigate this question for the field of psychoanalysis. Whereas most medical fields adopted a 1995 recommendation for consent requirements, psychoanalysis continues to defend the traditional practice of nonconsensual publication. Both the hermeneutic and the scientific branches of the field justify the practice, arguing that it provides data needed to help future patients, and both branches advance generalizations and causal claims. However the hermeneutic branch embraces methods tending to (...) undermine the reliability of such claims, while the scientific branch aims to improve the field’s empirical base – in their words, to advance psychoanalysis as a science. The scientific branch therefore has the stronger claim to the traditional practice, and it their claim that I consider. An immediate concern arises. We seem unable to answer the applied ethical question without first determining which ethical theory is correct; for defenders of the practice appeal variously to therapeutic privilege, principlism, and utilitarianism, while opponents wage autonomy-based arguments. The concern turns out to be unfounded, however, because all of these ethical approaches fail to justify the traditional practice. The more promising defenses fail partly because even the scientific branch of the field lacks empirically sound methods for establishing its causal claims and generalizations, often appealing to authority instead. I conclude that it is currently unethical for analysts to continue publishing their patients’ confidences without permission, and I suggest that the field help future patients by attending to its methodological problems. (shrink)