Integrity is a critical determinant of the effectiveness of research organizations in terms of producing high quality research and educating the new generation of scientists. A number of responsible conduct of research (RCR) training programs have been developed to address this growing organizational concern. However, in spite of a significant body of research in ethics training, it is still unknown which approach has the highest potential to enhance researchers’ integrity. One of the approaches showing some promise in improving researchers’ integrity (...) has focused on the development of ethical decision-making skills. The current effort proposes a novel curriculum that focuses on broad metacognitive reasoning strategies researchers use when making sense of day-to-day social and professional practices that have ethical implications for the physical sciences and engineering. This sensemaking training has been implemented in a professional sample of scientists conducting research in electrical engineering, atmospheric and computer sciences at a large multi-cultural, multi-disciplinary, and multi-university research center. A pre-post design was used to assess training effectiveness using scenario-based ethical decision-making measures. The training resulted in enhanced ethical decision-making of researchers in relation to four ethical conduct areas, namely data management, study conduct, professional practices, and business practices. In addition, sensemaking training led to researchers’ preference for decisions involving the application of the broad metacognitive reasoning strategies. Individual trainee and training characteristics were used to explain the study findings. Broad implications of the findings for ethics training development, implementation, and evaluation in the sciences are discussed. (shrink)
Although Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training is common in the sciences, the effectiveness of RCR training is open to question. Three key factors appear to be particularly important in ensuring the effectiveness of ethics education programs: (1) educational efforts should be tied to day-to-day practices in the field, (2) educational efforts should provide strategies for working through the ethical problems people are likely to encounter in day-to-day practice, and (3) educational efforts should be embedded in a broader program of (...) on-going career development efforts. This article discusses a complex qualitative approach to RCR training development, based on a sensemaking model, which strives to address the afore-mentioned training concerns. Ethnographic observations and prior RCR training served the purpose of collecting information specific to a multi-disciplinary and multi-university research center with the goal of identifying metacognitive reasoning strategies that would facilitate ethical decision-making. The extensive qualitative analyses resulted in the identification of nine metacognitive reasoning strategies on which future RCR training will be developed. The implications of the findings for RCR training in the sciences are discussed. (shrink)
Edward R. Murrow's reputation began and grew with World War II. This analysis, focused on his radio reporting, concerns two reports filed after he accompanied a bombing mission over Germany. The two reports provide a unique analytic opportunity because their foundation is in a singular experience. It is an analysis of the decision process, with ethical questions central to the development of the story, it is an application of classical ethical theory to a historical object for the purposes of creating (...) an understanding of media heritage and the application of moral philosophy. (shrink)
Despite an abundance of theoretical literature on virtue ethics in nursing and health care, very little research has been carried out to support or refute the claims made. One such claim is that ethical nursing is what happens when a good nurse does the right thing. The purpose of this descriptive, qualitative study was therefore to examine nurses’ perceptions of what it means to be a good nurse and to do the right thing. Fifty-three nurses responded to two open-ended questions: (...) (1) a good nurse is one who...; and (2) how does a nurse go about doing the right thing? Three hundred and thirty-one data units were analysed using qualitative content analysis. Seven categories emerged: personal characteristics, professional characteristics, patient centredness, advocacy, competence, critical thinking and patient care. Participants viewed ethical nursing as a complex endeavour in which a variety of decision-making frameworks are used. Consistent with virtue ethics, high value was placed on both intuitive and analytical personal attributes that nurses bring into nursing by virtue of the persons they are. Further investigation is needed to determine just who the ‘good nurse’ is, and the nursing practice and education implications associated with this concept. (shrink)
Although Responsible Conduct of Research training is common in the sciences, the effectiveness of RCR training is open to question. Three key factors appear to be particularly important in ensuring the effectiveness of ethics education programs: educational efforts should be tied to day-to-day practices in the field, educational efforts should provide strategies for working through the ethical problems people are likely to encounter in day-to-day practice, and educational efforts should be embedded in a broader program of on-going career development efforts. (...) This article discusses a complex qualitative approach to RCR training development, based on a sensemaking model, which strives to address the afore-mentioned training concerns. Ethnographic observations and prior RCR training served the purpose of collecting information specific to a multi-disciplinary and multi-university research center with the goal of identifying metacognitive reasoning strategies that would facilitate ethical decision-making. The extensive qualitative analyses resulted in the identification of nine metacognitive reasoning strategies on which future RCR training will be developed. The implications of the findings for RCR training in the sciences are discussed. (shrink)
The paper presents evidence in bacteria for the utility of Godfrey-Smith’s environmental complexity thesis, using certain kinds of signal transduction systems as proxies for cognitive/behavioral complexity. Microbiologists already accept that the number of signal transduction proteins in a bacterial genome indicates the level of ecological complexity to which the organism is subject: the more signalling proteins, the greater the complexity. Sheer numbers are not always a reliable indicator of behavioral complexity, however. The paper proposes a new, ECT-based procedure for (...) identifying, from genomic sequence and signalling repertoire, novel bacterial candidates likely to exhibit behavioral complexity in response to a complex ecological niche. (shrink)
We have two main objections to Kerr and Godfrey-Smith's (2002) meticulous analysis. First, they misunderstand the position we took in Unto Others – we do not claim that individual-level statements about the evolution of altruism are always unexplanatory and always fail to capture causal relationships. Second, Kerr and Godfrey-Smith characterize the individual and the multi-level perspectives in terms of different sets of parameters. In particular, they do not allow the multi-level perspective to use the individual fitness parameters i (...) and i. We don't see why the multi-level perspective prevents one from thinking in these terms. Kerr and Godfrey-Smith's argument that Uyenoyama and Feldman's (1980, 1992) definition of altruism belongs more to the individualist perspective than it does to the multi-level perspective is an artifact of their choice of parameters; the same point applies to their argument about the individualism inherent in the idea of Class I and Class II fitness structures. (shrink)
Natural selection is an extremely powerful process – so powerful, in fact, that it is often tempting to deploy it in explaining phenomena as wide-ranging as the persistence of blue eyes, the origins or persistence of religious belief, or, the history of science. One long-standing debate among both critics and advocates of Darwin’s concerns the scope of Darwinian explanations, and how we are to draw the line. Peter Godfrey-Smith’s Darwinian Populations and Natural Selection is a detailed examination of this (...) question. The book explores the criteria for what may count as a “Darwinian population,” by which Godfrey-Smith means, which collections of entities have the capacity to undergo evolution via natural selection (p. 6). Drawing upon his answer to this question, Godfrey-Smith examines and provides his own solution to the following long-standing debates in philosophy of biology: (a) the twin problems of reproduction and individuation of biological entities, (b) the persistent “gene’s eye view,” (c) the levels and units of selection problem, and (d) the evolution of cultural artifacts and behaviors. (shrink)
We are affected by the world: when I place my hand next to the fire, it becomes hot, and when I plunge it into the bucket of ice water, it becomes cold. What goes for physical changes also goes for at least some mental changes: when Felix the Cat leaps upon my lap, my lap not only becomes warm, but I also feel this warmth, and when he purrs, I hear his purr. It seems obvious, in other words, that perception (...) (at least, and at least under ordinary conditions) is a matter of being affected by the agency of perceptible objects. Call this doctrine affectionism. Durand of St.-Pourçain rejects affectionism. The paper has three parts. In the first part, I sketch, briefly, what motivates Durand to reject affectionism. In the second part, I will take up the affectionist doctrine as defended by Durand's older contemporary at Paris, Godfrey of Fontaines, who holds that the object of all our mental acts (not just perceptions, but also thoughts and desires) is the efficient cause of those acts, or, in other words, all mental acts (not just perception) come about owing to the affection of the relevant mental faculty by the agency of the object. As it turns out, Godfrey develops a celebrated argument against the thesis that the object is not the efficient cause but a mere sine qua non cause. Hence his position offers a challenge to Durand's position, a challenge, I argue in the third part, Durand meets. (shrink)
It is nearly two decades now since the publication of Godfrey Tangwa's article, ‘Bioethics: African Perspective’, without a critical review. His article is important because sequel to its publication in Bioethics, the idea of ‘African bioethics’ started gaining some attention in the international bioethics literature. This paper breaks this relative silence by critically examining Tangwa's claim on the existence of African bioethics. Employing conceptual and critical methods, this paper argues that Tangwa's account of African bioethics has some conceptual, methodic (...) and substantive difficulties, which altogether do not justify the idea of African bioethics, at least for now. Contra Tangwa, this article establishes that while African bioethics remains a future possibility, it is more cogent that current efforts in the name of ‘African bioethics’ be primarily re-intensified towards ‘Healthcare ethics in Africa’. (shrink)
James of Viterbo’s ethical writings focus mostly upon happiness and virtue. His basic approach is Aristotelian. Although he is not a Thomist in the sense that some of his contemporary Dominicans were, he frequently quotes or paraphrases Thomas while arguing for his own positions, especially in response to views defended by such figures as Giles of Rome, Godfrey of Fontaines, and Henry of Ghent. James departs from Thomas by arguing that all acquired virtue is based on an ordered self-love. (...) James’s emphasis on self-love is in turn supported by his own understanding of willing and happiness, which involves a Neoplatonic account of the ratio boni as consisting in unity. Consequently, many aspects of James’s Aristotelian moral thought are ultimately based upon an understanding of the good that has roots in Neoplatonic authors. (shrink)
In his essay "Consumers Need Information: Supplementing Teleosemantics with an Input Condition" (this issue) Nicholas Shea argues, with support from the work of Peter Godfrey-Smith (1996), that teleosemantics, as David Papinau and I have articulated it, cannot explain why "content attribution can be used to explain successful behavior." This failure is said to result from defining the intentional contents of representations by reference merely to historically normal conditions for success of their "outputs," that is, of their uses by interpreting (...) or consuming mechanisms, bypassing the more traditional focus, of those who would naturalize intentional content, on causal or informational inputs. Shea proposes to "add an input condition to teleosemantics," requiring that simple representations must carry "correlational information." I am grateful to Shea for his paper, as it presents me with an opportunity to clarify two fairly central features of my position on intentional content, one of which seems to have been overlooked in the literature (Millikan 1993a), the other of which I have stated previously only in a confusing way (Millikan 2004, Chapters 3-4). The first clarification concerns the general form that I take explanation by reference to intentional states to have. The second concerns my description of "locally recurrent natural information," why this kind of information is needed in place of Shea's "correlational information" to explain what feeds simple representational systems, and why no reference to natural information is needed to account for the success of behaviors by reference to the truth of representations that motivate them. (shrink)
A number of recent discussions have argued that George Price's equationfor representing evolutionary change is a powerful and illuminatingtool, especially in the context of debates about multiple levels ofselection. Our paper dissects Price's equation in detail, and comparesit to another statistical tool: the calculation and comparison ofaverage fitnesses. The relations between Price's equation and equationsfor evolutionary change using average fitness are closer than issometimes supposed. The two approaches achieve a similar kind ofstatistical summary of one generation of change, and they (...) achieve thisvia a similar loss of information about the underlying fitnessstructure. (shrink)
: My commentary on Hurley is concerned with foundational issues. Hurley's investigation of animal cognition is cast within a particular framework—basically, a philosophically refined version of folk psychology. Her discussion has a complicated relationship to unresolved debates about the nature and status of folk psychology, especially debates about the extent to which folk psychological categories are aimed at picking out features of the causal organization of the mind.
Biologists and philosophers differ on whether selection should be analyzed at the level of the gene or of the individual. In Peter Godfrey-Smith’s book, Darwinian Populations and Natural Selection, he argues that individuals can be good members of Darwinian populations, whereas genes rarely can. I take issue with parts of this view, and suggest that Godfrey-Smith’s scheme for thinking about Darwinian populations is also applicable to populations of genes.
ContentsJames A. BELL: ForewordPreface and AcknowledgmentsAnalytical Table of ContentsIntroduction: Whewell’s Image and Impact; Two Conflicting TalesPART ONE: the building of Whewell’s image 1. Immediate Rejection2. Embarrassed SilencePART TWO: WHEWELL’S IMPACT EMERGING3. Disturbing Recollections Fail to Pass Away4. The 20th Century Sneaks a Worried Look at Old JudgmentsPART THREE: THE IMAGE REINSTATED. THE REALITY COVERED OVER 5. The Return to Old Misconceptions 6. Quixotic Attempts to Revive Mill’s Program 7. The Reappraisal of Whewell’s Place in the History of the Philosophy of (...) Science BeginsPART FOUR: Whewell reappraised today 8. An Overview: Whewell’s Philosophy in Retrospect 9. The Good that Whewell Can Still DoReferencesCOMMENTARIESMichael SEGRE: Whewell’s Legacy and the Art of ArgumentationJoseph AGASSI: The Case-Study and Its Import: Wettersten on WhewellRon CURTIS: The Theological DeductionMaurice A. FINOCCHIARO: Was Whewell an Inductivist?Godfrey GUILLAUMIN J., William Whewell’s Idea of Historical CausationWilliam MARGOLIS: A Small Appreciation of William WhewellREPLIES TO COMMENTARIESJohn WETTERSTEN: Replies to CommentariesIndex. (shrink)
Compensation has received a great deal of attention from social scientists. Characteristically, they have been concerned with the causes and effects of various compensation schemes. By contrast, few theorists have addressed the normative aspects of compensation. An exception is Elaine Sternberg, who offers in Just Business a comprehensive theory of compensation ethics. This paper critically examines her theory, and argues that the justification she gives for it fails. Its failure is instructive, however. The main argument Sternberg gives for her (...) theory points in the direction of a different one. This, in turns, helps us to see what a justification of Sternberg’s theory must look like. While focused on Sternberg, this paper is of general interest. It identifies what are likely to be important positionsand arguments in debates about compensation ethics, and thus provides a jumping-off point for further research in this neglected area. (shrink)
The book is equally divided into three parts, treating respectively Godfrey's metaphysics of essence and existence, his metaphysics of substance and accident, and his metaphysics of matter and form. The basic theme running throughout Godfrey's metaphysics is seen to be his understanding of Aristotle's doctrine of potency and act.
In his “non-narrative” film Koyaanisqatsi Godfrey Reggio documents the ecologically disastrous ‘imbalanced’ life in modern, industrialised mega-cities. In the film, he seems to mourn the loss of what he suggests was a more ‘balanced’ form of life, when Man was one with nature. This contribution draws on elements in Hopi culture and reads Reggio’s iconic film as part of a cultural trend in which submission, in all its guises, is no longer accepted. In this cultural trend submission always is (...) submission to code, and therefore, to wasteful destruction and to ‘life in imbalance’. This trend has, however, in the course of the decades, also spawned a void of “Luciferian” desires of absolute sovereignty, and has done this to such an extent as to undermine the conditions of possibility for anything like a non-submissive life ‘in balance’ to endure. (shrink)
As a critic, Virginia Woolf has been called a number of disparaging names: "impressionist," "belletrist," "raconteur," "amateur." Here is one academic talking on the subject: "She will survive, not as a critic, but as a literary essayist recording the adventures of a soul among congenial masterpieces. . . . The writers who are most downright, and masculine, and central in their approach to life - Fielding or Balzac - she for the most part left untouched....Her own approach was at once (...) more subterranean and aerial, and invincibly, almost defiantly, feminine." In other words, Virginia Woolf is not a critic; how could she be? She is a woman. From its beginning, criticism has been a man's world. This is to say not only that males have earned their living as critics but, more importantly, that the conventionally accepted ideals of critical method are linked with qualities stereotypically allotted to males: analysis, judgment, objectivity. Virginia Woolf has had a poor reputation as a critic not merely because her sex is female but because her method is "feminine." She writes in a way that is said to be creative, appreciative, and subjective. We will accept this descriptive for the moment but will later enlarge on it, and even our provisional acceptance we mean to turn to a compliment. Barbara Currier Bell has written articles on critical theory and modern poetry and has served as a consultant on women's education at both Vassar and Hampshire Colleges. She is assistant professor of English at Wesleyan University. Carol Ohmann is the author of Ford Madox Ford: From Apprentice to Craftsman and several articles on English and American fiction. She coedited Female Studies IV: Teaching about Women with Elaine Showalter and is chairman of the Department of English at Wesleyan University. She has contributed, with Richard Ohmann, "Reviewers, Critics, and The Catcher in the Rye , and "CRITICAL RESPONSE: Universals and the Historically Particular" .See also: "The Masculine Mode" by Peter Schwenger in Vol. 5, No. 4; "The Robber in the Bedroom: or, The Thief of Love: A Woolfian Grieving in Six Novels and Two Memoirs" by Mark Spilka in Vol. 5, No. 4. (shrink)
Part of Frost's continuing appeal to the "popular imagination" stems from his pronunciamentos on diverse topics: the metaphoric "pleasure of ulteriority," "the sound of sense," poems beginning in wisdom and ending in delight—"a momentary stay against confusion." These phrases along with favorite one-liners have made their way into our lexicon as memorable formulations both of Frost's ars poetica and of quotidian reality. Even schoolboys allegedly know the poet in these or similar terms. And why not? Yet the supposed "commonness" of (...) Frost is precisely what must be brought under radical scrutiny—including his formulaic statements of intent. Though these statements have been used effectively for critical purposes, the fact remains that they themselves are often problematic and tend toward the disconcertingly devious.1 That Frost's recourse to the rhetoric of irony and indirection is by no means confined to his poetry should not deter us from using his statements of intent to understand his poetry more fully. A cautionary "go slow," however, is in order. · 1. This is one reason I have difficulty accepting Elaine Barry's claims for Frost as a theorist. Having distinguished between Frost as "critical theorist" and as "practical critic," Barry concludes: "Robert Frost has left us a body of critical theory that is probably larger than that of any American poet. It has scope and depth, wit and subtlety—and a great sanity. In its significance, it bears favorable comparison with the formalized criticism of Eliot or Pound . . ." . Frost makes some most suggestive statements—often requiring de-metaphorization—about poetry, especially his own. But taken as a whole, those statements constitute, at best, only an approximation of "theory." That this is not merely semantic haggling over the definition of theory should be evident from Barry's favorable comparison of Frost to Pound and especially Eliot. Victor E. Vogt has recently completed a study on love, death, and the quotidian in modern American drama and is currently working on the moral and sociological aspects of dramatism. (shrink)
In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:The more I love someone, the more firmly or steadily I love her – the more ready I am to act for her good; accordingly, the more I love someone the more prepared I am to suffer evil for her sake. My desire for her good makes me want to act for her good. I appeal to this love when deciding what I should do; and in acting I (...) try to make the world around me conform to what I desire for her. But one might argue that I could be virtuous and order every good that I seek ultimately to my own good.This essay examines John Duns Scotus's efforts in Ordinatio 3.27, where he treats the natural and infused virtues of charity, to escape such an inference, an inference that he associates, I argue, with Aristotle. For Scotus we never act morally when the end that structures what we do and think is ultimately our own good. Against Aristotle, Scotus believes that the distinctive motive of virtuous agency is not the kalon of the virtuous act – its moral beauty – as aimed at the actualization of the agent's good. Rather, the distinctive motive of virtuous agency is the kalon of the virtuous act as aimed at the actualization or preservation of another's good. The virtuous agent does not seek the good of others instrumentally. His principal motives are not ulterior motives. The virtuous father, for example, seeks his child's good principally and his own good secondarily. For Scotus the moral act is an essentially ordered act in which the agent's self-interest is subordinated to the good of the other.I will argue that if careful attention is paid to Scotus's treatments of friendship and heroic self-sacrifice in Ordinatio 3.27, as well as the medieval debates in which they find a place, then the text warrants just this reading of Scotus's moral psychology. I will contrast Scotus's treatments of friendship and heroic self-sacrifice principally with Aristotle's, but also with those of Thomas Aquinas, Henry of Ghent, and Godfrey of Fontaines. In Ordinatio 3.27 Scotus shifts the virtuous agent's center of gravity from the self to the concrete individuals existing outside of him. This shift rests on a precisely defined theory of desirability that is enshrined in the distinction that Scotus draws between two grades of lovability of an object – a distinction that has received little scholarly attention. For Scotus the principal basis of friendship is not found, as Aristotle would have it, in a metaphysics of identity and resemblance. Rather human experience teaches us both that the most basic ratio of friendship is the ratio of lovability, a friend's amabilitas, and that the ratio of lovability is the moral beauty or uprightness of a friend, his honestas.A close reading of heroic self-sacrifice in Ordinatio 3.27 will bring further clarity to Scotus's moral psychology. Scotus's treatments of both friendship and heroic self-sacrifice are driven by the principle that God has made the human will so that it is free to tend toward every object in the manner dictated by reason. From this principle it follows that apart from grace we must be able to love more than the self whatever is better than the self, which effectively means that we must have a natural capacity to love God and the common good over the self. It also follows that if the distinctive motive of virtuous agency does not vary, as Scotus believes, then moral motives must properly be other-regarding motives. In Ordinatio 3.27 Scotus considers the example of the soldier who does not believe that the soul is immortal and who yet risks death for the common good because he loves it more than he loves himself. Thomas Osborne has recently argued that this soldier's choice and act exemplifies our ability to act freely on selfless motives against what.. (shrink)
The text quoted above each note is that of the edition of Seneca's tragedies by Otto Zwierlein , OCT 1986; numerous passages are discussed in his Kritischer Kommentar zu den Tragüdien Senecas , Stuttgart, 1986; various textual suggestions were made in a correspondence with Zw. by B. Axelson . Other works on Seneca's tragedies, referred to by the scholar's name only, are: Text and translation: F. J. Miller, Loeb, 1917; L. Herrmann, Budé, 1924–6. Text with commentary: R. J. Tarrant, Agamemnon (...) , and Thyestes ; J. G. Fitch, Hercules Furens . Text with commentary and translation: Elaine Fantham, Troades ; A. J.Boyle, Phaedra. (shrink)
John Dewey’s Experience and Nature has the potential to transform several areas of philosophy. The book is lengthy and difficult, but it has great importance for a knot of issues in epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind. It bears also on metaphilosophy, devoting many pages to the discipline’s characteristic pathologies, and advancing a view of what sort of guidance “naturalism” provides. Later chapters move on to discuss art, morality, and value. So this is a major statement by Dewey. It may (...) one day transform moral philosophy as he hopes, but this review will focus on the central ideas of the first two-thirds of the book. Here Dewey does succeed, I think, in motivating us to look at his core topics—experience and nature—in a new way. And though Dewey’s language is often obscure and unhelpful, some of the main ideas are simpler than they look.Earlier “pragmatist” philosophical work was novel in its focus on the relation between thought and action. This work had a broadly emp. (shrink)