The ongoing legal and bioethics debates on consent requirements for collecting, storing, and utilizing human biological material for purposes of basic and applied research—that is, genomic research biobanking—have already managed to pass through three ostensibly dissimilar stages.
From the 5th edition of Beauchamp and Childress' Principles of Biomedical Ethics, the problem of common morality has been given a more prominent role and emphasis. With the publication of the 6th and latest edition, the authors not only attempt to ground their theory in common morality, but there is also an increased tendency to identify the former with the latter. While this stratagem may give the impression of a more robust, and hence stable, foundation for their theoretical construct, we (...) fear that it comes with a cost, namely the need to keep any theory in medical ethics open to, and thereby aware of, the challenges arising from biomedical research and clinical practice, as well as healthcare systems. By too readily identifying the moral life of common morality with rule-following behaviour, Beauchamp and Childress may even be wrong about the nature of common morality as such, thereby founding their, by now, classic theory on quicksand instead of solid rock. (shrink)
Labor unions are key stakeholders in the field of corporate social responsibility but researchers have paid surprisingly little attention to their CSR strategies. This article extends stakeholder theory by treating unions as having stakeholders that influence their CSR strategies. Drawing on qualitative data from a longitudinal study on selected unions in France between 2006 and 2013, this paper analyzes the underlying reasons for the differences in their approaches. It finds connections between the unions’ CSR strategy, and the perception of and (...) cooperation with stakeholders. (shrink)
If medical confidentiality is not observed patients may well be reluctant to disclose information to their doctors or even to seek medical advice. Therefore, argues the author, it is of the utmost importance that doctors strive to protect medical confidentiality, particularly now when it is under threat not only in this country but also overseas. The profession must cease to regard ethical issues to do with confidentiality, and indeed to do with all areas of medical practice, as abstract phenomena requiring (...) no justification. If it does not then it will come under increasing and justified criticism from the community it serves. (shrink)
This paper examines Alain Badiou’s critical engagement with religion. It is argued that there are two central points at which religion enters the scene of Badiou’s philosophy. First, in his critique, the ‘motif of finitude’ Badiou repeatedly refers to religion, claiming that ‘the obsession with finitude is a remnant of the tyranny of the sacred’. Second, Badiou stages his attempt to regenerate philosophy against the proclamation of its end as a confrontation with the religion, through philosophy’s detachment from the poetization (...) of philosophy and its reattachment to mathematics. By examining these two points, the paper aims to encircle Badiou’s notion of religion and thus clarify the role it plays in his philosophical system. This paper suggests that his notion of religion is a by-product of his polemics and therefore needs to be ‘extracted’ from his writings. Hence, the ‘critique of religion’ present in Badiou’s work is not straightforward and explicit critique. Another central aspect of Badiou’s critique of religion is related to his effort to separate the concept of truth from the category of meaning, which he understands as the emblem of religion. The paper sheds light on this matter and its setting in Jacques Lacan’s considerations on religion. (shrink)
The paper considers the role of universities as actors in regional development, and the implications for approaches to knowledge, including knowledge construction. The new role for universities requires the production of knowledge, which relates to the needs of the region. Particular attention was given to the Agder region of Norway, and Agder University College.
The argument in this article is that knowledge is an important phenomenon to understand in order to discuss development and innovation in modern workplaces. Predominant theories on knowledge in organisation and innovation literature, we argue, are based on a dualist concept of knowledge. The arguments found in these theories argue for one type of knowledge in contrast to another. The most prevailing dualism is that between local and universal knowledge. We believe that arguing along this line does not bring us (...) further in order to understand what knowledge is and what it does. We argue that there are contradictory arguments in the dualist conception of knowledge. We discuss how to move beyond this. We present a framework for discussing what knowledge is. We discuss what type of meta perspective will allow us to compare different knowledge kinds. We argue that insight into this has implications for understanding knowledge generation and innovation. (shrink)
This article introduces the work of the research team in Agder, providing a context for the seven following articles. The writers have been personally engaged in the processes which they describe, and seek to draw general conclusions from their experience. Agder is a prosperous region, which has not experienced crisis, and is able to devote considerable resources to regional development.
More and more companies are developing corporate social responsibility -related programs which imply strategic and organizational changes. This article focuses on a public utility organization, the Groupe La Poste, in which CSR issues and practices are linked to its specific mission as a public service, thus defining and explicitly structuring its CSR programs. We explore the following research questions: Why did the Groupe La Poste formulate explicitly its CSR program? What is the content of this program and how it is (...) perceived by managers? To provide answers to these questions, we have developed a conceptual framework based on a literature review linking CSR to strategic and organizational change and we apply it to the Groupe La Poste. The analysis shows a progressive convergence between strategic and CSR trajectories and sheds light into how an organization can progressively integrate CSR as a central part of its strategic plan. It confirms the role of central dimensions that support the integration of CSR programs within the organization. CSR-related mission and vision aim at orienting the organization toward sustainability and responsibility. CSR-related principles and policies transpose vision and mission into commitments and guide the implementation and adoption of responsible behavior while CSR-related shared values underlie the whole program. (shrink)
Though the authors of this commentary have deep felt doubts about the fruitfulness of Björkman and Hansson’s analysis of bodily rights, they do not doubt their capacity to develop both creative and provocative thoughtsIt is always welcoming to be confronted with thoughts that, even though one wholeheartedly disagrees with them, have the effect of stimulating one’s own reflections on matters, which without such confrontations, would have been less distinct, less critical—and we would gladly admit, less polemical. Thus it is thanks (...) to Barbro Björkman and Sven Ove Hansson’s article, “Bodily rights and property rights”, that we have been able to set our present course into these murky waters. The issue they want to address is by no means of a kind that lends itself easily to theoretical speculation. This has, perhaps, as much to do with the inherent intricacy of the issue itself as with the controversy it has managed to arouse. The issue is: is it possible to have ownership over one’s own body—that is, is it appropriate to treat the body and its components as property? What are the implications of conceptualising the body and its parts in terms of property? Should one, as a general rule, be able to sell and buy human biological material? If so, who should be allowed to buy and sell it? Does the sale or donation of one’s own bodily parts imply a transfer of ownership rights to the buyer or receiver, or is it rather that ownership of human bodily parts can only be acquired after the material has been, say, manipulated in a laboratory?Contrary to Björkman and Hansson, who see “the primary normative issue” to be “what combination of rights a person should have to a particular item of biological material”, we believe that their decision to construe …. (shrink)
Through careful interpretative essays on Greek poets, Shakespeare, and the Hebrew Bible, Athens, Arden, Jerusalem explores fundamental questions about God, human nature, and the political order. The collection of essays addresses topics ranging from friendship and marriage to sovereignty and tyranny, from piety and sin to comedy and contemplation.
Among the most interesting of the controversies in the recent history of parapsychology and related studies is the claim made in 1933 by the psychical researcher Harry Price that the medium Rudi Schneider had on one particular occasion produced his psychic effects by fraudulent means. The background to this event, and the controversy which followed it, are described in detail in this article, which draws on many hitherto unpublished materials. The issues involved range from the design of experiments in (...) an unusual area of science, through the relation between fringe and orthodox science, to the role of popularisers of science and the ethics of science. (shrink)
The authors of the papers in A Simple Matter of Justice? reject something they label “heterosexism.” Their writing is obscure, but it seems they desire a state-regimented conformity, with state-approved roles for gays, for lesbians and for others, with state hand-outs and other privileges for all manner of favoured groups, and with no possibility of anyone indulging in the pleasures of “commercial consumerism.” None of the authors appears concerned with the demand that, provided he/she does not violate anyone’s rights, the (...) state should not put any barriers in the way of the sexually active citizen. The Geography of Perversion is a dull and ponderous history of European ideas about male homosexual behaviour, which in places seems to be little more than lists of what various people said. It is appallingly written in grandiloquent language larded with daft Marxist clichés. (shrink)