This paper shows that, for a large range of parameters, the journal editor prefers to delegate the choice to review the manuscript to the biased referee. If the peer review process is informative and the review reports are costly for the reviewers, even biased referees with extreme scientific preferences may choose to become informed about the manuscript’s quality. On the contrary, if the review process is potentially informative but the reviewer reports are not costly for the referees, the biased reviewer (...) has no incentive to become informed about the manuscript. Furthermore, if the reports are costly for referees but the peer review processes are not potentially informative, the biased reviewers will never become informed. In this paper, we also present a web resource that helps editors to experiment with the review process as a device for information transmission. (shrink)
Surnames of grandparents were collected from children in the primary schools of the AlbanianItalian and Greek–Italian villages of southern Italy and Sicily. The coefficients of relationships by isonymy show almost no relationship with ethnicity. Ethnolinguistic minorities of southern Italy and Sicily are geographically subdivided into two main clusters: the first cluster comprises the Albanian, Croat and Greek communities of the Adriatic area; and the second cluster comprises the Albanian and Greek communities of the Ionian, Thirrenian and Sicilian areas.
What if human joy went on endlessly? Suppose, for example, that each human generation were followed by another, or that the Western religions are right when they teach that each human being lives eternally after death. If any such possibility is true in the actual world, then an agent might sometimes be so situated that more than one course of action would produce an infinite amount of utility. Deciding whether to have a child born this year rather than next is (...) a situation wherein an agent may face several alternatives whose effects could well ramify endlessly on such suppositions, for the child born this year would be a different person—one who preferred different things, performed different actions, and had different descendants—from a child born next year. It has recently been suggested that traditional utilitarianism stumbles on such cases of infinite utility. Specifically, utilitarianism seems to require, for its application, that all experience of pleasure and pain cease at some time in the future or asymptotically approach zero.2 If neither of these conditions holds, then the utility produced by each of two alternative actions may turn out to be infinite, and utilitarianism thus loses its ability to discriminate morally between them. (shrink)
Surnames were obtained for the second half of the 20th century from civil and religious marriage registers on fifteen Provençal-Italian and five Italian villages of Cuneo Province, Italy. To insert in the analysis an outward comparison, surnames from two Italian villages of Turin Province, one parish of Turin, one village of Alessandria Province and one village of Asti Province were also collected. Ethnicity does not seem to be the main factor affecting the present genetic structure of the Provençal-Italians. They are (...) an open community, and evidence the end of the genetic isolation of the alpine populations. (shrink)
Synaesthesia is a condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces photisms, i.e. mental percepts of colours. R is a 20 year old colour blind subject who, in addition to the relatively common grapheme-colour synaesthesia, presents a rarely reported cross modal perception in which a variety of visual stimuli elicit aura-like percepts of colour. In R, photisms seem to be closely related to the affective valence of stimuli and (...) typically bring out a consistent pattern of emotional responses. The present case study suggests that colours might be an intrinsic category of the human brain. We developed an empirical methodology that allowed us to study the subject's otherwise inaccessible phenomenological experience. First, we found that R shows a Stroop effect (delayed response due to interference) elicited by photisms despite the fact that he does not show a regular Stroop with real colours. Secondly, by manipulating the colour context we confirmed that colours can alter R's emotional evaluation of the stimuli. Furthermore, we demonstrated that R's auras may actually lead to a partially inverted emotional spectrum where certain stimuli bring out emotional reactions opposite to the normal ones. These findings can only be accounted for by considering R's subjective colour experience or qualia. Therefore the present paper defends the view that qualia are a useful scientific concept that can be approached and studied by experimental methods. (shrink)
Este artículo presenta los resultados de la fase de implementación de un estudio de caso que pretende instaurar un modelo de competencias para el desarrollo del pensamiento creativo e innovador a partir de la ingeniería concurrente, como gestión de las prácticas de enseñanza y aprendizaje en una Institución de Educación Superior en Bogotá-Colombia. La actividad se desarrolló bajo un método de investigación acción participativa, el cual buscó explicar razones de los diferentes aspectos que conllevan la planificación, organización y el estudio (...) de un producto o servicio, al intervenir desde un modelo instaurado como proyecto de aula contrastando estos análisis con los primeros resultados de una investigación tipo exploratoria de enfoque cualitativa tomando organizaciones y/o empresas en contextos reales para su diagnóstico de necesidad de innovación. Estos criterios de transferibilidad se basan por una parte sobre una interpretación del enfoque concurrente al realizar el estado del arte existente y los patrones de comportamiento de las empresas para así destacar las dimensiones críticas particulares, por otra parte, se basa en un análisis del tipo de modelo de intervención que permita su implementación en este tipo de empresas. En consecuencia, el modelo de trabajo simultáneo integra las experiencias y la información a través de un conjunto de elementos, que permiten visualizar destrezas creativas para formular ideas novedosas en el ciclo de vida de un producto o servicio, exponiendo la relevancia de la presente estrategia didáctica en integrar la academia con la realidad. (shrink)
En este artículo se estudian las razones que permiten establecer dos momentos en la filosofía kantiana de la historia, momentos que configuran una sutil evolución que, sin embargo, no contradice la intención esencial de la misma: El primero de ellos, anterior a 1790, se basa en un necesitarismo naturalista conjugado con la idea de la libertad como subsunción a la ley moral, lo cual dificulta la relación teoríapraxis, generando pesimismo histórico y, a la vez, no muy fundadas esperanzas en la (...) intervención del buen príncipe para producir el cambio político y social. El segundo momento, encara la historia desde el juicio teleológico, la admisión de los sentimientos como parte cooperante en la moral y la admiración a la revolución francesa, generando optimismo histórico, otorgando al derecho un papel decisivo en la construcción de la república noumenon y abriéndose a una concepción de la libertad más cercana al libre albedrío. (shrink)
I first sketch an account of humility as a character trait in which we are unimpressed with our good, envied, or admired features, achievements, etc., where these lack significant salience for our image of ourselves, because of the greater prominence of our limitations and flaws. I situate this view among several other recent conceptions of humility (also called modesty), dividing them between the inward-directed and outward-directed, distinguish mine from them, pose problems for each alternative account, and show how my understanding (...) of humility captures truths present but exaggerated in several of them. Responding to some problems for my view, including what I call “Driver’s Paradox”(i.e., the strangeness of someone’s proclaiming ‘I’m humble!’), I suggest that some over-ambitious claims about our moral responsibilities may indicate a lack of proper humility. I discuss the relationship of the character trait of humility both to what humiliates and to what humbles, concluding with consideration of the background assumptions against which, and the circumstances in which, humility may reasonably be classified as a moral virtue. (shrink)
Drawing chiefly on recent sources, in Part One I sketch an untraditional way of articulating what I claim to be central elements of traditional Catholic morality, treating it as based in virtues, focused on the recipients (“patients”) of our attention and concern, and centered in certain person-to-person role-relationships. I show the limited and derivative places of “natural law,” and therefore of sin, within that framework. I also sketch out some possible implications for medical ethics of this approach to moral theory, (...) and briefly contrast these with the influential alternative offered by the “principlism” of Beauchamp and Childress. In Part Two, I turn to a Catholic understanding of the nature and meaning of human suffering, drawing especially on writings and addresses of the late Pope John Paul II. He reminds us that physical and mental suffering can provide an opportunity to share in Christ's salvific sacrifice, better to see the nature of our earthly vocation, and to reflect on the dependence that inheres in human existence. At various places, and especially in my conclusion, I suggest a few ways in which this can inform bioethical reflection on morally appropriate responses to those afflicted by physical or mental pain, disability, mental impairment, disease, illness, and poor health prospects. My general point is that mercy must be informed by appreciation of the person's dignity and status. Throughout, my approach is philosophical rather than theological. (shrink)
IPCC SPECIAL REPORT ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND LAND (SRCCL) -/- Chapter 3: Climate Change and Land: An IPCC special report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems.
A new approach to landscape ecology involves the application of the eco-field hypothesis and the General Theory of Resources. In this study, we describe the putative eco-field of bark beetles as a spatial configuration with a specific meaning-carrier for every organism-resource interaction. Bark beetles are insects with key roles in matter and energy cycles in coniferous forests, which cause significant changes to forestry landscapes when outbreaks occur. Bark beetles are guided towards host trees by the recognition of semiotic signals using (...) a specific eco-field. These signals mainly comprise a group of scents, which are called the odourtope. Their interactions with other organisms occur by sharing relevant information from the eco-field networks in the forest ecosystem. The eco-field networks modulate the expansion of the realized semiotic niche of the bark beetle towards the potential semiotic niche. Moreover, the niche construction process can be initiated by interchanging signals among species living in the same place, where these signals allow the exploitation of the required resources. If different organisms are interdependent on signals in eco-field networks, then this process may result in the establishment of mutualistic relationships. This is an example of how evolutionary processes are initiated by the recognition of signals in a network of eco-fields. (shrink)
The paper defends the thesis that for S to V intentionally is for S to V as (in the way) S intended to. For the normal agent the relevant sort of intention is an intention that one's intention to V generate an instance of one's V-ing along some (usually dimly-conceived) productive path. Such an account allows us to say some actions are intentional to a greater or lesser extent (a desirable option for certain cases of wayward causal chains), preserves the (...) intuitive link between intention and intentionally, and supports the common sense view that the concept of intending is more basic than those of acting with an intention and of acting intentionally. The remainder of the paper responds to certain apparent counter-examples offered by Audi, Harman, and Bratman. In the course of this, I discuss connections between intending to V and hoping to V, and I argue that one can intend to do what one doesn't expect to do, and that one always intends what one attempts. (shrink)
Argumentation represents a way of reasoning over a knowledge base containing possibly incomplete and/or inconsistent information, to obtain useful conclusions. As a reasoning mechanism, the way an argumentation reasoning engine reaches these conclusions resembles the cognitive process that humans follow to analyze their beliefs; thus, unlike other computationally reasoning systems, argumentation offers an intellectually friendly alternative to other defeasible reasoning systems. LogicProgrammingisacomputationalparadigmthathasproducedcompu- tationallyattractivesystemswithremarkablesuccessinmanyapplications. Merging ideas from both areas, Defeasible Logic Programming offers a computational reasoning system that uses an argumentation engine (...) to obtain answers from a knowledge base represented using a logic programming language extended with defeasible rules. This combination of ideas brings about a computationally effective system together with a human-like reasoning model facilitating its use in applications. (shrink)
La belleza ha sido, desde tiempo de los griegos, el tormento de los filósofos; conformarse tal idea apresándola bajo una definición a la que se niega ha ocupado, siempre en vano, la tarea de no pocos pensadores hasta la actualidad. La hermosura no deja racionalizarse y hace así de la razón una sinrazón; ni es cognoscible, ni posee estructura lógica. Es por ello que a través de la percepción estética aprehendemos lo que en sí no es perceptible; es la experiencia (...) de apertura de una interioridad que hasta el momento había permanecido oculta a los ojos de lo cotidiano y adquiere ahora un rango de primer orden. (shrink)
This essay rebuts Gary Seay's efforts to show that committing euthanasia need not conflict with a physician's professional duties. First, I try to show how his misunderstanding of the correlativity of rights and duties and his discussion of the foundation of moral rights undermine his case. Second, I show aspects of physicians' professional duties that clash with euthanasia, and that attempts to avoid this clash lead to absurdities. For professional duties are best understood as deriving from professional virtues and the (...) commitments and purposes with which the professional as such ought to act, and there is no plausible way in which her death can be seen as advancing the patient's medical welfare. Third, I argue against Prof. Seay's assumption that apparent conflicts among professional duties must be resolved through "balancing" and argue that, while the physician's duty to extend life is continuous with her duty to protect health, any duty to relieve pain is subordinate to these. Finally, I show that what is morally determinative here, as throughout the moral life, is the agent's intention and that Prof. Seay's implicitly preferred consequentialism threatens not only to distort moral thinking but would altogether undermine the medical (and any other) profession and its internal ethics. (shrink)
The absence of a necessary connection in singular causation is a key step in the Humean argument against any form of necessity in causation. I argue that Hume's defence of this step is unsuccessful, and that the step could be skipped, accepting the possibility of necessary a posteriori truths. Still this does not suffice to guarantee a necessary connection in singular causation. Necessary a posteriori truths should be backed by necessary a priori truths. Thus, a main object of this paper (...) is to argue that an a priori philosophical concept of causality involves a necessary connection between its terms. (shrink)
International trade, the network that underpins globalization, shows an extreme inequality. Despite efforts of multilateral organizations to foster a more fair world through trade agreements, it is hard to assess the effect of these changes on such a complex system. We have measured, using numerical simulation on a recently published network model, the impact of simple policies to boost trade chances among the weakest economies. Results suggest that global inequality may be reduced improving trade among low-income economies.
Contrasting loving our neighbors with utilitarians’ demand to maximize good reveals important metatheoretic structures and dynamics that I call virtues- basing, input drive, role centering, and patient focus. First, love is a virtue; such virtues are foundational to both moral obligations and the impersonally valuable. Second, part of loving is acting lovingly. Whether and how I act lovingly, and how loving it is, is a matter of motivation; this input-driven account contrasts with highlighting actions’ outcome. Third, in regarding someone as (...) our neighbor we view her in relation to ourselves; a role-centered perspective shows that a wide range of person-to-person role-relationships constitute moral life. Fourth, if our moral task is loving each person, the moral question is how we respond to each person’s relevant welfare and needs, focusing on those toward someone acts, not on maximizing good across persons or producing an optimal world. (shrink)
Despite the widespread use of the classical bicriteria Markowitz mean-variance framework, a broad consensus is emerging on the need to include more criteria for complex portfolio selection problems. Sustainable investing, also called socially responsible investment, is becoming a mainstream investment practice. In recent years, some scholars have attempted to include sustainability as a third criterion to better reflect the individual preferences of those ethical or green investors who are willing to combine strong financial performance with social benefits. For this purpose, (...) new computational methods for optimizing this complex multiobjective problem are needed. Multiobjective evolutionary algorithms have been recently used for portfolio selection, thus extending the mean-variance methodology to obtain a mean-variance-sustainability nondominated surface. In this paper, we apply a recent multiobjective genetic algorithm based on the concept of ε-dominance called ev-MOGA. This algorithm tries to ensure convergence towards the Pareto set in a smart distributed manner with limited memory resources. It also adjusts the limits of the Pareto front dynamically and prevents solutions belonging to the ends of the front from being lost. Moreover, the individual preferences of socially responsible investors could be visualised using a novel tool, known as level diagrams, which helps investors better understand the range of values attainable and the tradeoff between return, risk, and sustainability. (shrink)
The largest project managers and adjudicators of a country, both by number of projects and by cost, are public procurement agencies. Therefore, knowing and characterising public procurement announcements is fundamental for managing public resources well. This article presents the case of public procurement in Spain, analysing a dataset from 2012 to 2018: 58,337 tenders with a cost of 31,426 million euros. Many studies of public procurement have been conducted globally or theoretically, but there is a dearth of data analysis, especially (...) regarding Spain. A quantitative, graphical, and statistical description of the dataset is presented. Mainly, the analysis is of the relation between the award price and the bidding price. An award price estimator is proposed that uses the random forest regression method. A good estimator would be very useful and valuable for companies and public procurement agencies. It would be a key tool in their project management decision making. Finally, a similar analysis, employing a dataset from European countries, is presented to compare and generalise the results and conclusions. Hence, this is a novel study which fills a gap in the literature. (shrink)
This essay applies to the morality of lying and other deception a sketch of a kind of virtues-based, input-driven, role-centered, patient-focused, ethical theory. Among the questions treated are: What is wrong with lying? Is it always and intrinsically immoral? Can it be correct, as some have vigorously maintained, that lying is morally wrong in some circumstances where other forms of deliberate dissimulation are not? If so, how can that be? And how can it be that lying to someone is immoral (...) when other, harsher ways of treating her are permissible? The essay examines several responses to the first question, and suggests that lying violates morality as an excessive departure from the role-derived virtues of charity and justice: the liar wills another person the evil of false belief precisely in the proposition for which the speaker offers her assurance and takes special responsibility in asserting. So conceived, lying is an especially egregious form of treachery and degrading manipulation of another person. Appeal is then made to the gravity inherent in lying so conceived to suggest ways of answering the other questions which would support the traditional Augustinian claim that lying is inherently impermissible and ineligible in circumstances where other forms of deliberate deception may not be, and even in situations where violent attack may be permissible.At the end, a taxonomy of more and less rigorist positions of lying is offered. A tentative proposal is made that, while consistent with the traditional Augustinian rigorist position that Iving is always immoral, nevertheless has some features that may slightly soften that view’s practical application. The proposed view does this in a way similar to that in which allowing moral dilemmas may soften it, for allowing dilemmas means there may be cases where an act of a type always immoral may still be more eligible than any alternative. However, it is maintained that the view here proposed need not countenance genuine dilemmas. (shrink)
This article argues for two related theses. First, it defends a general thesis: any kind of necessity, including metaphysical necessity, can only be known a priori. Second, however, it also argues that the sort of a priori involved in modal metaphysical knowledge is not related to imagination or any sort of so-called epistemic possibility. Imagination is neither a proof of possibility nor a limit to necessity. Rather, modal metaphysical knowledge is built on intuition of philosophical categories and the structures they (...) form. (shrink)
I here respond to several points in Faucher and Machery’s vigorous and informative critique of my volitional account of racism (VAR). First, although the authors deem it a form of "implicit racial bias," a mere tendency to associate black people with "negative" concepts falls short of racial "bias" or prejudice in the relevant sense. Second, such an associative disposition need not even be morally objectionable. Third, even for more substantial forms of implicit racial bias such as race-based fear or disgust, (...) Faucher and Machery offer no account or explanation of when we should consider these racist, in whom, in what respect(s), or why. So, findings of implicit racial bias pose no clear objection to VAR. Fourth, because VAR allows not only racial hate, but also callous indifference, disdain, and other forms of racially driven disregard, to be racist,VAR is not "psychologically monist." Fifth, as VAR allows racist attitudes to be immoral in more than one way, offending against both the moral virtues of benevolence and justice, VAR is not "morally monist" either. I also reveal problems with some of Faucher and Machery’s other claims: Faucher and Machery take too narrow a conception of the types of psychology that can contribute to understanding racism; the internal complexity of hatred, which they approvingly mention, is irrelevant to VAR’s truth and undermines part of their criticism of VAR; whether some forms of racial bias are "racial ills" is irrelevant to VAR, which only analyzes racism; over-attention to implicit racial bias may cloak or exacerbate some of our society’s racial ills, or even constitute a new one. I conclude by noting that Faucher and Machery are not just critics of VAR but also allies of VAR in important controversies against those who insist racism lies primarily in social structures and institutions. (shrink)
In this paper I consider the possibility of a kind of a priori cognition that serves the purposes of metaphysics, given that metaphysics involves the search for modal knowledge. Necessary or, better, modal knowledge is a priori; so metaphysical knowledge is likewise a priori. Here I argue that intuition is the route to modal knowledge in metaphysics, and I insist that conceivability or knowledge of conceptual truths does not lead towards the modal realm of metaphysics.