The “Model for Reaching Ethical Judgments in the context of Modern Technologies — the Case of Genetic Technology”, which is presented here, has arisen from the project “Ethical Criteria bearing upon Decisions taken in the field of Biotechnology”. This project has been pursued since 1991 in the Zentrum für interdisziplinäre Technikforschung (ZIT) of the Technical University of Darmstadt, with the purpose of examining decision-making in selected activities involving the production of transgenic plants that have a useful application. The model is (...) the basis of an outline for interviews to investigate how far decisions concerning the development of such plants with genetic techniques take ethical criteria into account. It was necessary to design this new model because other models for reaching judgments of this kind were not conceptually suited for concrete application. This model represents a problem related approach and combines methodological with substantive typology. In this it differs from comparable models for reaching ethical judgments. (shrink)
The paper provides a briefintroduction to the biotechnology revolutionand its impact upon biological researchrelevant to military uses. It describes thestatus of biological weapons today, and currentefforts to strengthen the Biological WeaponsConvention with a legally binding complianceprotocol. Specific modifications ofmicro-organisms that may be of military use arediscussed. Three examples of dual-use researchactivities are then used to highlight issuesand dilemmas in ethical decision making.
Bender, Robert The USA constitution does not have a clause requiring any separation of church and state and until 1948 there were no Supreme Court rulings to ensure that this was seen as a basic constitutional principle. Then in 1945 Vashti McCollum, a 33-year-old part-time squaredancing teacher from Champaign, Illinois, initiated a legal action that changed all that.
This paper reviews the uneven history of the relationship between Anthropology and Cognitive Science over the past 30 years, from its promising beginnings, followed by a period of disaffection, on up to the current context, which may lay the groundwork for reconsidering what Anthropology and (the rest of) Cognitive Science have to offer each other. We think that this history has important lessons to teach and has implications for contemporary efforts to restore Anthropology to its proper place within Cognitive Science. (...) The recent upsurge of interest in the ways that thought may shape and be shaped by action, gesture, cultural experience, and language sets the stage for, but so far has not fully accomplished, the inclusion of Anthropology as an equal partner. (shrink)
Time belongs to a handful of categories (like form, symbol, cause) that are genuinely transdisciplinary. Time touches every dimension of our being, every object of our attention - including attention itself. It therefore can belong to no single field of study. Of course, this universalist view of time is not itself universal but rather is a product of the modern age, an age that conceived of itself as the 'new' time. Time has thus gained new importance as a theme of (...) general research with the 'post-modern turn' now manifest in many areas of intellectual endeavor, especially in the humanities and social sciences. 'Chronotypes' are models or patterns through which time assumes practical or conceptual significance. Time is not given but (as the subtitle indicates) fabricated in an ongoing process. Chronotypes are themselves temporal and plural, constantly being made and remade at multiple individual, social, and cultural levels. They interact, they change over time, and they have histories, whose construal is itself an act of temporal construction. This book - an interdisciplinary collaboration of philosophers, historians, literary critics, and anthropologists - examines the ways individuals, societies, and cultures make sense of time by constructing it in diverse patterns. Its title intentionally echoes a concept of narrative theory, Mikhail Bakhtin's 'chronotype', because narrative recurs as a chief form within which we build temporality. The topics treated by these essays range from story-telling to cross-cultural communication, from epistemological debates to concepts of historical periodization, from the construction of life stories to the stratification of social time. (shrink)
Conditional promises and threats are speech acts that are used to manipulate other people's behaviour. Studies on human reasoning typically use propositional logic to analyse what people infer from such inducements. While this approach is sufficient to uncover conceptual features of inducements, it fails to explain them. To overcome this limitation, we propose a multilevel analysis integrating motivational, linguistic, deontic, behavioural, and emotional aspects. Commonalities and differences between conditional promises and threats on various levels were examined in two experiments. The (...) first shows that both types of inducements are understood as being complementary on the linguistic level, but not reversible, due to the specific temporal order of their actions. In addition, it gives a first assessment of emotional reactions. The second experiment investigated the novel question of whether complementary promises and threats, despite semantic differences, both imply an obligation to cooperate on the deontic level. The data corroborate this hypothesis, and they support various appraisal-theoretical assumptions on the elicitation of emotions. They also reveal that content affects not only the attribution of emotions, but also the deontic interpretation. (shrink)
Anthropology and the other cognitive science (CS) subdisciplines currently maintain a troubled relationship. With a debate in topiCS we aim at exploring the prospects for improving this relationship, and our introduction is intended as a catalyst for this debate. In order to encourage a frank sharing of perspectives, our comments will be deliberately provocative. Several challenges for a successful rapprochement are identified, encompassing the diverging paths that CS and anthropology have taken in the past, the degree of compatibility between (1) (...) CS and (2) anthropology with regard to methodology and (3) research strategies, (4) the importance of anthropology for CS, and (5) the need for disciplinary diversity. Given this set of challenges, a reconciliation seems unlikely to follow on the heels of good intentions alone. (shrink)
According to Keith Lehrer’s coherence theory, knowledge is true acceptance whose justification is undefeated by a falsehood. It has recently become clear that Lehrer’s handling of important Gettier-inspired problems depends upon his position that only falsehoods accepted by the subject can act as defeaters of knowledge. I argue against this and present an example in which an unreckoned truth---one neither believed nor believed to be false by the subject---defeats knowledge. I trace the negative implications of this matter for the coherence (...) theory. (shrink)
It is argued that, despite the neglect which Heidegger’s writings on science have generally received, the “fundamental ontology” of Being and Time reveals certain structures of experience crucial for our understanding of science; and that, as these insights cast considerable doubt upon the validity of the empiricist/positivist conception of science, Heidegger deserves considerably better treatment as an incipient philosopher of science than has been the case thus far. His arguments for the distortive effects of the alleged “change over” from praxis (...) to theoria, for the circularity of all human understanding (including scientific understanding), for the necessity of interpreting scientific method in terms of the hermeneutic circle, and for viewing scientific “crises” in ontological terms, are examined and evaluated. The article concludes with some reflections on the later Heidegger’s views on the limits of his earlier idea of science. (shrink)
This conclusion of the debate on anthropology’s role in cognitive science provides some clarifications and an overview of emergent themes. It also lists, as cases of good practice, some examples of productive cross-disciplinary collaboration that evince a forward momentum in the relationship between anthropology and the other cognitive sciences.
We examine how UK listed companies set executive pay, reviewing the implications of following best practice in corporate governance and examining how this can conflict with what shareholders and other stakeholders might perceive as good behaviour. We do this by considering current governance regulation in the light of interviews with protagonists in the debate, setting out the dilemmas faced by remuneration-setters, and showing how the processes they follow can lead to ethical conflicts.Current ‘best’ practice governing executive pay includes the use (...) of market benchmarks to determine salary and bonus levels, significant levels of performance-related pay, the desire for executives to hold equity in their companies, the disclosure of total shareholder return compared to an index, and a perceived need for conformity, in order to grant legitimacy to policies. Whilst each of these may in some circumstances lead to good practice, each has the potential to cause dysfunctional behaviour in executives. Overall, we conclude that although best practice might drive good executive behaviour that coincides with the company’s and key stakeholders’ objectives, there are many reasons why it should not. (shrink)
Abstract John McKnight's The Careless Society tellingly exposes the ways the professionalized welfare state creates dependency. But McKnight is too quick to condemn this result as the product of professional self?interest, and to posit as the alternative a selfless, republican model of community. He overlooks the more realistic possibility that the pursuit of their interests by social groups empowered to take care of themselves would better serve those interests, and would simultaneously create a feeling of interdependence and civic responsibility.
We have argued that Lehrer's definitions of coherence and justification have serious technical defects. As a result, the definition of justification is both too weak and too strong. We have suggested solutions for some of the problems, but others seem irremediable. We would also argue more generally that if coherence is anything like what Lehrer's theory says it is, then coherence is neither necessary nor sufficient for justification. While our current objections are directed at the ‘letter’ of Lehrer's theory, other (...) criticisms can be aimed at its very ‘spirit’. We would argue that coherence is unnecessary for justification because of the existence of ‘basic beliefs’, those about self-presenting states (‘I have a tingling sensation in my leg’) or self-evident truths (‘All men are men’). Such beliefs may be justified even though there are no other propositions in the subject's acceptance system that makes them more probable than competitors. Coherence is, moreover, insufficient for justification, because it ignores the inferential structure of the subject's acceptance system, and requires no justification of any kind for the subject's acceptance system itself. But we must develop these more fundamental objections on another occasion. (shrink)
Interpretation of the development of merleau-ponty's attitude toward phenomenological reflection. first, ``the phenomenology of perception'' is shown to be a critique of the transcendental idealism of husserl's works prior to the ``crisis''. second, ``the visible and the invisible'' is shown to be an imminent critique of the ``lifeworld phenomenology'' of the ``crisis'' and of ``the phenomenology of perception'', leading to the view that phenomenological reflection, like reflective philosophy in general, must be superseded by a new approach which would articulate our (...) truly immediate relation with the world. (shrink)