We investigate risk and ambiguity attitudes among Ethiopian farmers in one of the poorest regions of the world. Strong risk aversion and ambiguity aversion were found with the Ethiopian farmers. We compared their attitudes to those of a Western university student sample elicited by the same decision task. Ambiguity aversion was similar for farmers and students, but farmers were more risk averse. Our results show that ambiguity aversion is not restricted to Western student populations, and that studies of agricultural decisions (...) may benefit from explicitly considering ambiguity attitudes. (shrink)
Fairness can be incorporated into Harsanyi’s utilitarianism through all-inclusive utility. This retains the normative assumptions of expected utility and Pareto-efficiency, and relates fairness to individual preferences. It makes utilitarianism unfalsifiable, however, if agents’ all-inclusive utilities are not explicitly specified. This note proposes a two-stage model to make utilitarian welfare analysis falsifiable by specifying all-inclusive utilities explicitly through models of individual fairness preferences. The approach is applied to include fairness in widely discussed allocation examples.
This paper presents an experimental study of common consequence effects in binary choice, willingness-to-pay elicitation, and willingness-to-accept elicitation. We find strong evidence in favor of the fanning out hypothesis for both WTP and WTA. In contrast, the choice data do not show a clear pattern of violations in the absence of certainty effects. Our results underline the relevance of differences between pricing and choice tasks, and their implications for models of decision making under risk.
Psychological distance effects have attracted the attention of behavioral economists in the context of descriptive modeling and behavioral policy. Indeed, psychological distance effects have been shown for an increasing number of domains and applications relevant to economic decision-making. The current paper questions whether these effects are robust enough for economists to apply them to relevant policy questions. We demonstrate systematic replication failures for the distance-from-a-distance effect shown by Maglio et al., and relate them to theoretical arguments suggesting that psychological distance (...) theories are currently too poorly specified to make predictions that are precise enough for economic analyses. (shrink)
«Existe-t-il une argumentation juridique?», c’est la question à laquelle tente de répondre l’ouvrage de Stefan Goltzberg, intitulé explicitement L’argumentation juridique. Si l’auteur commence son ouvrage en posant directement la question, on en cherche aussitôt, par un réflexe de «juriste», la définition. Et il faut probablement lire l’intégralité de ce petit ouvrage pour voir se profiler une définition de l’argumentation juridique. Or, au cours de cette lecture Stefan Goltzberg nous montre en quoi chercher la définition, la poser, est déjà (...) une marque argumentative (p. 25) et certainement une marque de l’argumentation juridique. Or, Stefan Goltzberg n’est pas juriste de formation. Philosophe et linguiste, il est, notamment membre du Centre Perelman de philosophie du droit au sein duquel il a écrit une thèse de philosophie intitulé Théorie et histoire de la philosophie du droit, philosophie du droit de Chaïm Perelman, de Theodor Viehweg, de Roscoe Pound.Le droit est d’abord un objet d’ .. (shrink)
Does theorising always presuppose a programme of justification? Does the Critical Theory of Adorno and Horkheimer do so? Do they claim it does? The answer should be a resounding ‘no’ to all three questions. In regard to the second and third question, I have sketched an argument to that effect in an earlier paper in this journal. In this paper, I offer a rejoinder to the critical reply offered by Stefan Müller-Doohm und Roman Yos on behalf of the Habermasian (...) mainstream in Frankfurt School Critical Theory. This rejoinder depends on giving a negative answer also to the first question. In rejecting the Habermasian idea of a programme of justification, I stand accused of dogmatism and, consequently, decisionism. I show that this accusation itself betrays a certain dogmatism – insofar as it accepts that such a programme of justification is undeniably possible and required, without consideration of evidence or arguments to the contrary. Self-reflective and critical theorising about society can, indeed must, take other forms. (shrink)
Is it appropriate to blame people unequally if the only difference between them was a matter of luck? Suppose Alice would drive recklessly if she could, Belen drove recklessly but didn’t harm anyone, and Cleo drove recklessly and killed a child. Luck-advocates emphasize that in real life we do blame such agents very unequally. Luck-skeptics counter that people aren’t responsible for factors beyond their control, or beyond their quality of will. I’ll defend a somewhat reconciliatory view. I’ll concede to the (...) skeptics that these agents are equally culpable. Nonetheless, I’ll suggest with the luck-advocates that it’s fitting to blame them unequally. That’s because their culpability is unequally significant for us: Cleo’s culpability concerns us more than Belen’s, and Belen’s more than Alice’s—just like the fault of a close aggressor concerns us more than that of an aggressor far off in place and time. And it’s fitting for us to respond with more blame to faults that concern us more. Indeed, blaming people simply in proportion to their culpability manifests a form of fetishism, or problematic mere-matter-of-principle concern. So while many skeptical tenets may hold, in substance the luck-advocates are right. (shrink)
Our claim in this paper is that not being identified as the data source might cause harm to a person or group. Therefore, in some cases the default of anonymisation should be replaced by a careful deliberation, together with research subjects, of how to handle the issues of identification and confidentiality. Our prime example in this article is community participatory research and similar endeavours on indigenous groups. The theme, content and aim of the research, and the question of how to (...) handle property rights and ownership of research results, as well as who should be in charge of the research process, including the process of creating anonymity, should all be answered, before anonymity is accepted. (shrink)
We respond to Stephen T. Davis’ criticism of our earlier essay, “Assessing the Resurrection Hypothesis.” We argue that the Standard Model of physics is relevant and decisive in establishing the implausibility and low explanatory power of the Resurrection hypothesis. We also argue that the laws of physics have entailments regarding God and the supernatural and, against Alvin Plantinga, that these same laws lack the proviso “no agent supernaturally interferes.” Finally, we offer Bayesian arguments for the Legend hypothesis and against the (...) Resurrection hypothesis. (shrink)
Despite enthusiastic claims around the benefits of corporate volunteering for the workplace and its widespread implementation, the impact of such programs for beneficiaries and non-profit organizations remains uncertain, particularly when employees’ participation is one-off. Previous research suggests that the benefits of CV for employees, businesses, and society are more likely to occur if employees internalize a volunteer identity—that is, if being a volunteer becomes a part of their self. This leads them to sustain their participation in CV over time, maximizing (...) CV’s positive effects on all stakeholders. This study explores the factors explaining why employees internalize a volunteer identity in a corporate context. We do so by empirically testing Grant’s :589-615, 2012) volunteer work design theoretical model with a sample of 619 employees involved in CV programs, and by comparing its relevance with an alternative, extended model relying on insights from self-determination theory. Whereas we find only partial and weak empirical support for the VWD model, our SDT-extended model is supported empirically. These results show that the quality of motivation that employees experience while volunteering plays a more important role than repeated participation, as it illuminates the process of how factors such as the quality of the projects, organizational support for CV, as well as the causes targeted affect the internalization of a volunteer identity. In particular, we show that employees are more likely to internalize a volunteer identity if they can choose what cause to engage for and if they feel that the projects they participate in are meaningful. Surprisingly, we also show that a prestigious cause as well as recognition and managerial support foster a controlled form of motivation for employees, which are then unlikely to internalize a volunteer identity. In doing so, we contribute to a better understanding of how CV can have lasting benefits for both business and society, and provide business leaders with actionable insights about how to design impactful CV programs. (shrink)
Von 1925 bis 1928 wurden im Berliner J. M. Spaeth-Verlag unter der Leitung von Hans Rosenkranz eine Reihe von Werken seinerzeit eher unbekannter, in der Retrospektive jedoch signifikanter Autoren der Zwischenkriegszeit publiziert. Der Beitrag thematisiert Rosenkranz als jungen Verleger und Bewunderer Stefan Zweigs. Er entwirft auf Grundlage der Archivüberlieferung einen neuen Blick auf die Geschichte des Unternehmens und kommentiert das damit verbundene literarische Programm: Welche wichtigen verlegerischen Projekte wurden in jener kurzen Zeit unternommen? Welche Rolle hatte Stefan Zweig (...) für das Zustandekommen einiger Titel und besonders in den letzten Wochen der Verlagsexistenz? Inwiefern lässt sich Programmgestaltung und ökonomische Entwicklung von J. M. Spaeth als paradigmatisch für jüdische Verlage in der Weimarer Republik verstehen? Dazu wird erstmals das Scheitern des Unternehmens während der „Bücherkrise“ Ende der 1920er Jahre aus den Quellen rekonstruiert. (shrink)
This paper draws together as many as possible of the clues and pieces of the puzzle surrounding T. S. Eliot’s “infamous” literary term “objective correlative”. Many different scholars have claimed many different sources for the term, in Pound, Whitman, Baudelaire, Washington Allston, Santayana, Husserl, Nietzsche, Newman, Walter Pater, Coleridge, Russell, Bradley, Bergson, Bosanquet, Schopenhauer and Arnold. This paper aims to rewrite this list by surveying those individuals who, in different ways, either offer the truest claim to being the source of (...) the term, or contributed the most to Eliot’s development of it: Allston, Husserl, Bradley and Bergson. What the paper will argue is that Eliot’s possible inspiration for the term is more indebted to the idealist tradition, and Bergson’s aesthetic development of it, than to the phenomenology of Husserl. (shrink)
No one is quite sure what happened to T.S. Eliot in that rose-garden. What we do know is that it formed the basis for Four Quartets, arguably the greatest English poem written in the twentieth century. Luckily it turns out that Martin Heidegger, when not pondering the meaning of being, spent a great deal of time thinking and writing about the kind of event that Eliot experienced. This essay explores how Heidegger developed the concept of Ereignis, “event” which, in the (...) context of Eliot’s poetry, helps us understand an encounter with the “heart of light” a little better. (shrink)
In the past decade, the perception of a bioterrorist threat has increased and created a demand on life scientists to consider the potential security implications of dual use research. This article examines a selection of proposed moral obligations for life scientists that have emerged to meet these concerns and the extent to which they can be considered reasonable. It also describes the underlying reasons for the concerns, how they are managed, and their implications for scientific values. Five criteria for what (...) constitutes preventable harm are suggested and a number of proposed obligations for life scientists are considered against these criteria, namely, the obligations to prevent bioterrorism; to engage in response activities; to consider negative implications of research; not to publish or share sensitive information; to oversee and limit access to dangerous material; and to report activities of concern. Although bioterrorism might be perceived as an imminent threat, the analysis illustrates that this is beyond the responsibility of life scientists either to prevent or to respond to. Among the more reasonable obligations are duties to consider potential negative implications of one's research, protect access to sensitive material, technology and knowledge, and report activities of concern. Responsibility, therefore, includes obligations concerned with preventing foreseeable and highly probable harm. A central conclusion is that several of the proposed obligations are reasonable, although not unconditionally. (shrink)
This article gives a brief introduction to the MacArthur Competence Assessment Tool-Treatment (MacCAT-T) and critically examines its theoretical presuppositions. On the basis of empirical, methodological and ethical critique it is emphasised that the cognitive bias that underlies the MacCAT-T assessment needs to be modified. On the one hand it has to be admitted that the operationalisation of competence in terms of value-free categories, e.g. rational decision abilities, guarantees objectivity to a great extent; but on the other hand it bears severe (...) problems. Firstly, the cognitive focus is in itself a normative convention in the process of anthropological value-attribution. Secondly, it misses the complexity of the decision process in real life. It is therefore suggested that values, emotions and other biographic and context specific aspects should be considered when interpreting the cognitive standards according to the MacArthur model. To fill the gap between cognitive and non-cognitive approaches the phenomenological theory of personal constructs is briefly introduced. In conclusion some main demands for further research to develop a multi-step model of competence assessment are outlined. (shrink)
Most life science research entails dual-use complexity and may be misused for harmful purposes, e.g. biological weapons. The Precautionary Principle applies to special problems characterized by complexity in the relationship between human activities and their consequences. This article examines whether the principle, so far mainly used in environmental and public health issues, is applicable and suitable to the field of dual-use life science research. Four central elements of the principle are examined: threat, uncertainty, prescription and action. Although charges against the (...) principle exist – for example that it stifles scientific development, lacks practical applicability and is poorly defined and vague – the analysis concludes that a Precautionary Principle is applicable to the field. Certain factors such as credibility of the threat, availability of information, clear prescriptive demands on responsibility and directives on how to act, determine the suitability and success of a Precautionary Principle. Moreover, policy-makers and researchers share a responsibility for providing and seeking information about potential sources of harm. A central conclusion is that the principle is meaningful and useful if applied as a context-dependent moral principle and allowed flexibility in its practical use. The principle may then inspire awareness-raising and the establishment of practical routines which appropriately reflect the fact that life science research may be misused for harmful purposes. (shrink)