John Fischer and Mark Ravizza defend in this book a painstakingly constructed analysis of what they take to be a core condition of moral responsibility: the notion of guidance control. The volume usefully collects in one place ideas and arguments the authors have previously published in singly or jointly authored works on this and related topics, as well as various refinements to those views and some suggestive discussions that aim to show how their account of guidance control might fit (...) into a more comprehensive account of moral responsibility. (shrink)
States' Responsibility to Protect vulnerable populations has become a prominent feature in international debates about preventing genocide and mass atrocities and about protecting potential victims. But profound disagreements persist about RtoP's function, meaning, and proper use.
This paper argues that "moral luck", understood as a susceptibility of moral desert to lucky or unlucky outcomes, does not exist. The argument turns on the claim that epistemic inquiry is an indissoluble part of moral responsibility, and that judgment on the moral decision making of others should and can adjust for this fact; test cases which aim to isolate moral dilemmas from epistemic consideration misrepresent our moral experience. If the phenomena believed by some philosophers to exemplify the need (...) to admit moral luck as part of their explanation are analysed in the light of this insight, the case for "moral luck" dissolves. (shrink)
Some accounts of moral responsibility hold that an agent's responsibility is completely determined by some aspect of the agent's mental life at the time of action. For example, some hold that an agent is responsible if and only if there is an appropriate mesh among the agent's particular psychological elements. It is often objected that the particular features of the agent's mental life to which these theorists appeal (such as a particular structure or mesh) are not necessary for (...)responsibility. This is because there appear to be cases in which an agent acts at an earlier time which causes her to lack the appropriate psychological features at some later time and yet, intuitively, she is responsible at that later .. (shrink)
This paper concerns the responsibility of co-authors in cases of scientific misconduct. Arguments in research integrity guidelines and in the bioethics literature concerning authorship responsibilities are discussed. It is argued that it is unreasonable to claim that for every case where a research paper is found to be fraudulent, each author is morally responsible for all aspects of that paper, or that one particular author has such a responsibility. It is further argued that it is more constructive to (...) specify what task responsibilities come with different roles in a project and describe what kinds of situations or events call for some kind of action, and what the appropriate actions might be. (shrink)
With the normative demand to attend to social difference and an absence of universal evaluative terms with which to do so, recent theory has increasingly turned to the study of the affective rather than epistemological conditions of ethical encounter. This I call a “dispositional ethics” that construes responsibility as responsiveness. Recent articulations of such an ethics, notably in the most current work of Judith Butler, James Tully, Jade Larissa Schiff, and Ella Myers, highlight its connection to situated practices of (...) concrete bodies-in-relation, but often stop short of developing an account of what such embodied practices might be. Based on interviews with thirteen experts who take the body as their primary vocational and intellectual field and characterize their practice as an art of listening, I distinguish three dimensions of a dispositional ethics in practice and some of the specific strategies available to cultivate the conditions for responsiveness in political life. (shrink)
This is an excellent book. It is innovative in scope and carefully argued throughout. The book recasts the debate between compatibilists and incompatibilists as a normative debate about the conditions under which it is fair to hold a person morally responsible. Wallace’s strategy is to explain moral agency by examining the stance of holding morally responsible. On Wallace’s account, moral agency does not require the ability to do otherwise; this would invite legitimate incompatibilist suspicions about free will and determinism. Rather, (...) what is required is the rational capacity to grasp and act upon distinctively moral reasons. (shrink)
Extrapolating from Carroll’s four domains of corporate social responsibility and Pyramid of CSR, an alternative approach to conceptualizing corporate social responsibility is proposed. A three-domain approach is presented in which the three core domains of economic, legal, and ethical responsibilities are depicted in a Venn model framework. The Venn framework yields seven CSR categories resulting from the overlap of the three core domains. Corporate examples are suggested and classified according to the new model, followed by a discussion of (...) limitations and teaching and research implications. (shrink)
Every corporation has an internal decision structure which he terms the CID structure that represents "the personal organization for the exercise of the corporation's power with respect to its ventures.".
In this article we revisit the notion of stakeholder responsibility as a way to highlight the role that stakeholders have in creating anethical business context. We argue for modifying the prevailing focus on corporate responsibility to stakeholders, and giving more serious attention to the importance of stakeholder responsibility—to firms, and to other stakeholders who are part of the collective enterprise. We elaborate why stakeholder responsibility matters, and suggest how making stakeholder responsibility a central focus of (...) academics and practitioners can redefine the interaction between firms and stakeholders and ultimately enhance business excellence. (shrink)
There is a growing trend in policy making of holding people responsible for their lifestyle-based diseases. This has sparked a heated debate on whether people are responsible for these illnesses, which has now come to an impasse. In this paper, I present a psychological model that explains why different views on people’s responsibility for their health exist and how we can reach a resolution of the disagreement. My conclusion is that policymakers should not perceive people as responsible while health (...) care personnel should take the opposing view. (shrink)
This book provides a comprehensive, systematic theory of moral responsibility. The authors explore the conditions under which individuals are morally responsible for actions, omissions, consequences, and emotions. The leading idea in the book is that moral responsibility is based on 'guidance control'. This control has two components: the mechanism that issues in the relevant behavior must be the agent's own mechanism, and it must be appropriately responsive to reasons. The book develops an account of both components. The authors (...) go on to offer a sustained defense of the thesis that moral responsibility is compatible with causal determinism. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to present a perspective on Ricœur’s ethico-political thought in Course of Recognition and, by extension, on that of his entire work. The point of departure is the hypothesis that Ricœur’s reading of Weber on political responsibility provides one with an invaluable vantage point from where to identify a recurrent pattern in the French philosopher’s ethico-political thought. After a brief presentation and illustration of this hypothesis a close reading, principally of study III of Course (...) of Recognition, is offered. This reading affirms the hypothesis. It also allows a number of conclusions regarding the continuities, or a trait of ‘narrative identity’ in Ricœur’s ethico-political thought. This in turn enables one to better identify the stakes and objectives of Ricœur’s argument in the selected text and to qualify the relation this may be considered to have to his religious convictions. (shrink)
R. Jay Wallace argues in this book that moral accountability hinges on questions of fairness: When is it fair to hold people morally responsible for what they do? Would it be fair to do so even in a deterministic world? To answer these questions, we need to understand what we are doing when we hold people morally responsible, a stance that Wallace connects with a central class of moral sentiments, those of resentment, indignation, and guilt. To hold someone responsible, he (...) argues, is to be subject to these reactive emotions in one's dealings with that person. Developing this theme with unusual sophistication, he offers a new interpretation of the reactive emotions and traces their role in our practices of blame and moral sanction. With this account in place, Wallace advances a powerful and sustained argument against the common view that accountability requires freedom of will. Instead, he maintains, the fairness of holding people responsible depends on their rational competence: the power to grasp moral reasons and to control their behavior accordingly. He shows how these forms of rational competence are compatible with determinism. At the same time, giving serious consideration to incompatibilist concerns, Wallace develops a compelling diagnosis of the common assumption that freedom is necessary for responsibility. Rigorously argued, eminently readable, this book touches on issues of broad concern to philosophers, legal theorists, political scientists, and anyone with an interest in the nature and limits of responsibility. (shrink)
In her long-awaited Responsibility for Justice, Young discusses our responsibilities to address "structural" injustices in which we among many are implicated, often by virtue of participating in a market, such as buying goods produced in sweatshops, or participating in booming housing markets that leave many homeless.
David Shoemaker presents a new pluralistic theory of responsibility, based on the idea of quality of will. His approach is motivated by our ambivalence to real-life cases of marginal agency, such as those caused by clinical depression, dementia, scrupulosity, psychopathy, autism, intellectual disability, and poor formative circumstances. Our ambivalent responses suggest that such agents are responsible in some ways but not others. Shoemaker develops a theory to account for our ambivalence, via close examination of several categories of pancultural emotional (...)responsibility responses and their appropriateness conditions. The result is three distinct types of responsibility, each with its own set of required capacities: attributability, answerability, and accountability. Attributability is about the having and expressing of various traits of character, and it is the target of a range of aretaic sentiments and emotional practices organized around disdain and admiration. Answerability is about one’s capacity to govern one’s actions and attitudes by one’s evaluative judgments about the worth of various practical reasons, and it is the target of a range of sentiments and emotional practices organized around regret and pride. Accountability is about one’s ability to regard others, both evaluatively and emotionally, and it is the target of a range of sentiments and emotional practices organized around anger and gratitude. In Part One of the book, this tripartite theory is developed and defended. In Part Two of the book, the tripartite theory’s predictions about specific marginal cases are tested, once certain empirical details about the nature of those agents have been filled in and discussed. (shrink)
She was intensely sympathetic. She was immensely charming. She excelled in the difficult arts of family life. She sacrificed herself daily. If there was chicken, she took the leg, if there was a draught, she sat in it—in short, she was so constituted that she never had a mind or wish of her own, but preferred to sympathise always with the minds and wishes of others. — Virginia Woolf (1979, 59).
The publication of the Report of the International Bioethics Committee of Unesco on Social responsibility and health provides an opportunity to reshape the conceptual framework of the right to health care and its practical implications. The traditional distinctions between negative and positive, civil-political and economic-social, legal and moral rights are to be questioned and probably overcome if the goal is to pursue ‘the highest attainable standard of health’ as a fundamental human right, that should as such be guaranteed to (...) every human being. What we are called upon to, is the commitment not to exclude now and forever anyone from having access to the ‘excellence’ of scientific and medical progress. Therefore, the addressees of this ‘responsibility’ cannot be just the governments and the states within the limits of their ‘jurisdiction’. The challenge is to tackle at the same time the social and global determinants of health. (shrink)
Many assume that we can be responsible only what is voluntary. This leads to puzzlement about our responsibility for our beliefs, since beliefs seem not to be voluntary. I argue against the initial assumption, presenting an account of responsibility and of voluntariness according to which, not only is voluntariness not required for responsibility, but the feature which renders an attitude a fundamental object of responsibility (that the attitude embodies one’s take on the world and one’s place (...) in it) also guarantees that it could not be voluntary. It turns out, then, that, for failing to be voluntary, beliefs are a central example of the sort of thing for which we are most fundamentally responsible. (shrink)
This article examines how consensus was reached on the "responsibility to protect," given continuing hostility to humanitarian intervention expressed by many of the world's states and whether the consensus will contribute to avoiding future Kosovos and Rwandas.
Within recent years, we have witnessed an alarming increase in so-called school-shootings, where one or more students enter their school and purposely start shooting other students or staff. Earlier, the phenomenon was primarily American, but lately school-shootings have also been seen in Canada, Europe, and Australia. School-shootings have become an increasing problem and the phenomenon calls for more thorough investigation. In this article, we analyse the actions of teachers, more specifically the ones where teachers give their lives to save students. (...) This unselfish act is analysed in the light of Jacques Derrida’s ethical discussions around ‘the gift of death’, and is displayed as an absolute responsibility. Moreover, the sacrificial actions displayed by teachers are viewed as acts of primitive leadership, which take us back to the romanticism and heroism of leadership. Unlike the everyday management of organisations, crises call for extraordinary leadership; for sacrifice and responsibility. (shrink)
It is not a new thought that an adequate understanding of freedom and responsibility might require us to distinguish between the theoretical and practical points of view. This distinction is at the heart of the Kantian approach to moral philosophy. But while the Kantian strategy is deeply suggestive, it has proved difficult to work out the idea that freedom and responsibility are artifacts of the practical standpoint. Hilary Bok’s book Freedom and Responsibility provides a new interpretation and (...) defense of the broadly Kantian approach. It offers an illuminating account of the distinction between the practical and the theoretical points of view, and develops in an original way the thesis that freedom and responsibility need to be situated in the context of practical rather than theoretical reasoning. The book is a sophisticated statement of an important and underappreciated position; it is also pleasantly written and vigorously argued. I recommend it strongly to anyone with an interest in the issues it addresses. (shrink)
Where it was once a term of art employed by a handful of likeminded countries, activists, and scholars, but regarded with suspicion by much of the rest of the world, RtoP has become a commonly accepted frame of reference for preventing and responding to mass atrocities.
Recently, a number of philosophers have begun to question the commonly held view that choice or voluntary control is a precondition of moral responsibility. According to these philosophers, what really matters in determining a person’s responsibility for some thing is whether that thing can be seen as indicative or expressive of her judgments, values, or normative commitments. Such accounts might therefore be understood as updated versions of what Susan Wolf has called “real self views,” insofar as they attempt (...) to ground an agent’s responsibility for her actions and attitudes in the fact (when it is a fact) that they express who she is as a moral agent. As such, they seem to be open to some of the same objections Wolf originally raised to such accounts, and in particular to the objection that they cannot license the sorts of robust moral assessments involved in our current practices of moral responsibility. My aim in this paper is to try to respond to this challenge, by clarifying the kind of robust moral assessments I take to be licensed by (at least some) non-volitional accounts of responsibility and by explaining why these assessments do not in general require the agent to have voluntary control over everything for which she is held responsible. I also argue that the limited applicability of the distinction between “bad agents” and “blameworthy agents” on these accounts is in fact a mark in their favor. (shrink)
Intentional collective action -- Collective moral responsibility -- Collective guilt -- Individual responsibility for (and in) collective wrongs -- Collective obligation, individual obligation, and individual moral responsibility -- Individual moral responsibility in wrongful social practice.
Each of the books that Hannah Arendt published in her lifetime was unique, and to this day each continues to provoke fresh thought and interpretations. This was never more true than for Eichmann in Jerusalem, her account of the trial of Adolf Eichmann, where she first used the phrase “the banality of evil.” Her consternation over how a man who was neither a monster nor a demon could nevertheless be an agent of the most extreme evil evoked derision, outrage, and (...) misunderstanding. The firestorm of controversy prompted Arendt to readdress fundamental questions and concerns about the nature of evil and the making of moral choices. Responsibility and Judgment gathers together unpublished writings from the last decade of Arendt’s life, as she struggled to explicate the meaning of Eichmann in Jerusalem. At the heart of this book is a profound ethical investigation, “Some Questions of Moral Philosophy”; in it Arendt confronts the inadequacy of traditional moral “truths” as standards to judge what we are capable of doing, and she examines anew our ability to distinguish good from evil and right from wrong. We see how Arendt comes to understand that alongside the radical evil she had addressed in earlier analyses of totalitarianism, there exists a more pernicious evil, independent of political ideology, whose execution is limitless when the perpetrator feels no remorse and can forget his acts as soon as they are committed. Responsibility and Judgment is an essential work for understanding Arendt’s conception of morality; it is also an indispensable investigation into some of the most troubling and important issues of our time. (shrink)
This chapter outlines the main ideas of my book National responsibility and global justice. It begins with two widely held but conflicting intuitions about what global justice might mean on the one hand, and what it means to be a member of a national community on the other. The first intuition tells us that global inequalities of the magnitude that currently exist are radically unjust, while the second intuition tells us that inequalities are both unavoidable and fair once national (...)responsibility is allowed to operate. This conflict might be resolved either by adopting a cosmopolitan theory of justice (which leaves no room for national responsibility) or by adopting a ?political? theory of justice (which denies that questions of distributive justice can arise beyond the walls of the sovereign state). Since neither resolution is satisfactory, the chapter defends the idea of national responsibility and proposes a new theory of global justice, whose main elements are the protection of basic human rights worldwide, and fair terms of interaction between independent political communities. (shrink)
I here advance a critical research agenda for the political perspective of corporate social responsibility. I argue that whilst the ‘Political’ CSR literature is notable for both its conceptual novelty and practical importance, its development has been hamstrung by four ambiguities, conflations and/or oversights. More positively, I argue that ‘Political’ CSR should be conceived as one potential form of globalization, and not as a consequence of ‘globalization’; that contemporary Western MNCs should be presumed to engage in CSR for instrumental (...) reasons; that ‘Political’ CSR should be associated with a corresponding ‘political’ model of corporate governance; and that both a ‘Rawlsian’ and ‘Habermasian’ perspective of Political CSR are different from ‘Political’ CSR. In concluding, I use these four critiques to identify a number of areas within which increasingly robust and sophisticated positive and normative theories of Political CSR are required. (shrink)
What is a fair distribution of resources and other goods when individuals are partly responsible for their achievements? This book develops a theory of fairness incorporating a concern for personal responsibility, opportunities and freedom. With a critical perspective, it makes accessible the recent developments in economics and philosophy that define social justice in terms of equal opportunities. It also proposes new perspectives and original ideas. The book separates mathematical sections from the rest of the text, so that the main (...) concepts and ideas are easily accessible to non-technical readers. -/- It is often thought that responsibility is a complex notion, but this monograph proposes a simple analytical framework that makes it possible to disentangle the different concepts of fairness that deal with neutralizing inequalities for which the individuals are not held responsible, rewarding their effort, respecting their choices, or staying neutral with respect to their responsibility sphere. It dwells on paradoxes and impossibilities only as a way to highlight important ethical options and always proposes solutions and reasonable compromises among the conflicting values surrounding equality and responsibility. -/- The theory is able to incorporate disincentive problems and is illustrated in the examination of applied policy issues such as: income redistribution when individuals may be held responsible for their choices of labor supply or education; social and private insurance when individuals may be held responsible for their risky lifestyle; second chance policies; the measurement of inequality of opportunities and social mobility. (shrink)
My primary target in this paper is a puzzle that emerges from the conjunction of several seemingly innocent assumptions in action theory and the metaphysics of moral responsibility. The puzzle I have in mind is this. On one widely held account of moral responsibility, an agent is morally responsible only for those actions or outcomes over which that agent exercises control. Recently, however, some have cited cases where agents appear to be morally responsible without exercising any control. This (...) leads some to abandon the control-based account of responsibility and replace it with an alternative account. It leads others to deny the intuition that agents are responsible in these troublesome cases. After outlining the account of moral responsibility I have in mind, I look at some of the arguments made against the viability of this theory. I show that there are conceptual resources for salvaging the control account, focusing in particular on the nature of vigilance. I also argue that there is empirical data that supports the control account so conceived. (shrink)
Transnational corporations have become actors with significant political power and authority which should entail responsibility and liability, specifically direct liability for complicity in human rights violations. Holding TNCs liable for human rights violations is complicated by the discontinuity between the fragmented legal/political structure of the TNC and its integrated strategic reality and the international state system which privileges sovereignty and non-intervention over the protection of individual rights. However, the post-Westphalian transition—the emergence of multiple authorities, increasing ambiguity of borders and (...) jurisdiction and blurring of the line between the public and private spheres—should facilitate imposing direct responsibility on transnational firms. Mechanisms for imposing direct responsibility on TNCs are considered including voluntary agreements and international law. However, I conclude that a hybrid public-private regime which relies onnon-hierarchical compliance mechanisms is likely to be both more effective and consistent with the structure of the emerging transnational order. (shrink)
A recent concern in the debate on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in developing countries relates to the tension between demands for CSR compliance found in many global value chains (GVCs) and the search for locally appropriate responses to these pressures. In this context, an emerging and relatively understudied area of interest relates to small firm industrial clusters. Local clusters offer the potential for local joint action, and thus a basis for improving local compliance on CSR through collective monitoring and (...) local governance. This article explores the interrelationship between global governance, exercised through GVC ties, and local governance, via cluster institutions, in ensuring compliance with CSR pressures. It undertakes a comparative analysis of two leading export-oriented football manufacturing clusters in South Asia that have both faced common challenges on child labour. The article shows that both forms vertical and horizontal governance have played a part in shaping the response of the two clusters on child labour. Moreover, these two distinct forms of governance have also led to quite differentiated outcomes in terms of forms of work organization and child labour monitoring. This raises broader questions on how global CSR demands can locally be better embedded and the conditions under which football stitchers labour in these new work forms. (shrink)
The essay theorizes the responsibilities moral agents may be said to have in relation to global structural social processes that have unjust consequences. How ought moral agents, whether individual or institutional, conceptualize their responsibilities in relation to global injustice? I propose a model of responsibility from social connection as an interpretation of obligations of justice arising from structural social processes. I use the example of justice in transnational processes of production, distribution and marketing of clothing to illustrate operations of (...) structural social processes that extend widely across regions of the world. The social connection model of responsibility says that all agents who contribute by their actions to the structural processes that produce injustice have responsibilities to work to remedy these injustices. I distinguish this model from a more standard model of responsibility, which I call a liability model. I specify five features of the social connection model of responsibility that distinguish it from the liability model: it does not isolate perpetrators; it judges background conditions of action; it is more forward looking than backward looking; its responsibility is essentially shared; and it can be discharged only through collective action. The final section of the essay begins to articulate parameters of reasoning that agents can use for thinking about their own action in relation to structural injustice. a Footnotesa Thanks to David Alexander, Daniel Drezner, David Owen, and Ellen Frankel Paul for comments on an earlier version of this essay. Thanks to David Newstone for research assistance. (shrink)
In this paper, we focus on whether and to what extent we judge that people are responsible for the consequences of their forgetfulness. We ran a series of behavioral studies to measure judgments of responsibility for the consequences of forgetfulness. Our results show that we are disposed to hold others responsible for some of their forgetfulness. The level of stress that the forgetful agent is under modulates judgments of responsibility, though the level of care that the agent exhibits (...) toward performing the forgotten action does not. We argue that this result has important implications for a long-running debate about the nature of responsible agency. (shrink)
Research programs in empirical psychology from the past two decades have revealed implicit biases. Although implicit processes are pervasive, unavoidable, and often useful aspects of our cognitions, they may also lead us into error. The most problematic forms of implicit cognition are those which target social groups, encoding stereotypes or reflecting prejudicial evaluative hierarchies. Despite intentions to the contrary, implicit biases can influence our behaviours and judgements, contributing to patterns of discriminatory behaviour. These patterns of discrimination are obviously wrong and (...) unjust. But in remedying such wrongs, one question to be addressed concerns responsibility for implicit bias. Unlike some paradigmatic forms of wrongdoing, such discrimination is often unintentional, unendorsed, and perpetrated without awareness; and the harms are particularly damaging because they are cumulative and collectively perpetrated. So, what are we to make of questions of responsibility? In this article, we outline some of the main lines of recent philosophical thought, which address questions of responsibility for implicit bias. We focus on (a) the kind of responsibility at issue; (b) revisionist versus nonrevisionist conceptions of responsibility as applied to implicit bias; and (c) individual, institutional, and collective responsibility for implicit bias. (shrink)
This study examines the impact that research and development (R&D) intensity has on corporate social responsibility (CSR). We base our research on the resource-based view (RBV) theory, which contributes to our analysis of R&D intensity and CSR because this perspective explicitly recognizes the importance of intangible resources. Both R&D and CSR activities can create assets that provide firms with competitive advantage. Furthermore, the employment of such activities can improve the welfare of the community and satisfy stakeholder expectations, which might (...) vary according to their prevailing environment. As expressions of CSR and R&D vary throughout industries, we extend our research by analysing the impact that R&D intensity has on CSR across both manufacturing and non-manufacturing industries. Our results show that R&D intensity positively affects CSR and that this relationship is significant in manufacturing industries, while a non-significant result was obtained in non-manufacturing industries. (shrink)
Drug use and drug addiction are severely stigmatised around the world. Marc Lewis does not frame his learning model of addiction as a choice model out of concern that to do so further encourages stigma and blame. Yet the evidence in support of a choice model is increasingly strong as well as consonant with core elements of his learning model. I offer a responsibility without blame framework that derives from reflection on forms of clinical practice that support change and (...) recovery in patients who cause harm to themselves and others. This framework can be used to interrogate our own attitudes and responses, so that we can better see how to acknowledge the truth about choice and agency in addiction, while avoiding stigma and blame, and instead maintaining care and compassion alongside a commitment to working for social justice and good. (shrink)
This paper argues against incorporating assessments of individual responsibility into healthcare policies by expanding an existing argument and offering a rebuttal to an argument in favour of such policies. First, it is argued that what primarily underlies discussions surrounding personal responsibility and healthcare is not causal responsibility, moral responsibility or culpability, as one might expect, but biases towards particular highly stigmatised behaviours. A challenge is posed for proponents of taking personal responsibility into account within health (...) policy to either expand the debate to also include socially accepted behaviours or to provide an alternative explanation of the narrowly focused discussion. Second, a critical response is offered to arguments that claim that policies based on personal responsibility would lead to several positive outcomes including healthy behaviour change, better health outcomes and decreases in healthcare spending. It is argued that using individual responsibility as a basis for resource allocation in healthcare is unlikely to motivate positive behaviour changes, and is likely to increase inequality which may lead to worse health outcomes overall. Finally, the case of West Virginia's Medicaid reform is examined, which raises a worry that policies focused on personal responsibility have the potential to lead to increases in medical spending overall. (shrink)
Can unilateral action be an effective response to global climate change? Baylor Johnson worries that a focus on unilateral action by individuals will detract from efforts to secure collective agreements to address the problem. Although Johnson and I agree that individuals have some obligation to reduce their personal emissions, we differ in the degree to which we see personal reductions as effective in spurring broader change. I argue that 'unilateral reductions' can have communicative value and that they can change the (...) structure of collective action problems, making such problems easier to solve. Since collective action problems are much less tractable where individuals abide by the tenets of traditional game theory and much more tractable where individuals are oriented to cooperate and to trust that others will reciprocate, we need moral norms that promote individual restraint in exploitation of the commons, and we ought ourselves to abide by those norms. (shrink)
Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments offers an account of moral responsibility. It addresses the question: what are the forms of capacity or ability that render us morally accountable for the things we do? A traditional answer has it that the conditions of moral responsibility include freedom of the will, where this in turn involves the availability of robust alternative possibilities. I reject this answer, arguing that the conditions of moral responsibility do not include any condition of (...) alternative possibilities. In the terms that have become familiar, the book thus defends a compatibilist account of moral responsibility. (shrink)
The widespread association of business with maximising profit has tended to obscure its social dimension. Indeed some writers doubt whether business can ever be socially engaged and others claim that it should not. This paper seeks to show that besides seeking profit businesses can properly practise socialresponsibility, defined as involving themselves in their communities and engaging in non-profit activities. It explores the ways in which business social responsibility can contribute to social capital, the resources created by social bonds which (...) members of a society can draw upon and which make it possible to achieve otherwise unattainable ends. (shrink)
The legal significance of Libya is minimal, though the international response does show how the politics of humanitarian intervention has shifted to the point where it is harder to do nothing in the face of atrocities.
Philosophers have long agreed that moral responsibility might not only have a freedom condition, but also an epistemic condition. Moral responsibility and knowledge interact, but the question is exactly how. Ignorance might constitute an excuse, but the question is exactly when. Surprisingly enough, the epistemic condition has only recently attracted the attention of scholars, and it is high time for a full volume on the topic. The chapters in this volume address the following central questions. Does the epistemic (...) condition require akrasia? Why does blameless ignorance excuse? Does moral ignorance sustained by one’s culture excuse? Does the epistemic condition involve knowledge of the wrongness or wrongmaking features of one’s action? Is the epistemic condition an independent condition, or is it derivative from one’s quality of will or intentions? Is the epistemic condition sensitive to degrees of difficulty? Are there different kinds of moral responsibility and thus multiple epistemic conditions? Is the epistemic condition revisionary? What is the basic structure of the epistemic condition? (shrink)
Traditionally, the manufacturer/operator of a machine is held (morally and legally) responsible for the consequences of its operation. Autonomous, learning machines, based on neural networks, genetic algorithms and agent architectures, create a new situation, where the manufacturer/operator of the machine is in principle not capable of predicting the future machine behaviour any more, and thus cannot be held morally responsible or liable for it. The society must decide between not using this kind of machine any more (which is not a (...) realistic option), or facing a responsibility gap, which cannot be bridged by traditional concepts of responsibility ascription. (shrink)
This is the third paper in the invited collection. Maloney highlights commonalities and divergences between two of Code’s works, Epistemic Responsibility and Ecological Thinking: The Politics of Epistemic Location, focussing on three concepts: epistemic responsibility, which is central and common across both works; cognitive interdependence which is common to both works, but undergoes a major transformation in Ecological Thinking; and advocacy, which is entirely absent from the discussion in Epistemic Responsibility. Code’s work intersects with aspects of the (...) work of two other thinkers—Miranda Fricker’s hermeneutic injustice and Mikhail Bakhtin’s creative understanding. Advocacy as it emerges in Ecological Thinking must include a dialogical process with the other that leads both to and from greater self-understanding if it is to do the work of destabilizing dominant modes of knowing; further, advocacy is both necessary for, and can only happen within, epistemic community. (shrink)
The Herald of Free Enterprise, a ferry operating in the English Channel, sank on March 6, 1987, drowning nearly two hundred people. The official inquiry found that the company running the ferry was extremely sloppy, with poor routines of checking and management. “From top to bottom the body corporate was infected with the disease of sloppiness.”1 But the courts did not penalize anyone in what might seem to be an appropriate measure, failing to identify individuals in the company or on (...) the ship itself who were seriously enough at fault. As one commentator put it, “The primary requirement of finding an individual who was liable . . . stood in the way of attaching any significance to the organizational sloppiness that had been found by the official inquiry.”2 In a case like this it can make good sense to hold that while the individuals involved may not bear a high degree of personal responsibility, together as a corporate enterprise they should carry full responsibility for what occurred. Although the members may not fully satisfy the conditions for being held personally responsible—although there are mitigating circumstances that excuse them in some mea-. (shrink)
An empirical study of people's intuitions about freedom of the will. We show that people tend to have compatiblist intuitions when they think about the problem in a more concrete, emotional way but that they tend to have incompatiblist intuitions when they think about the problem in a more abstract, cognitive way.