Professor Judith Jarvis Thomson’s seminal paper “A Defence of Abortion” published in 1971 has formed part of higher education syllabi for decades. In the paper Thomson criticizes one of the fundamental arguments against abortion, that is, the right of the foetus to life by denying that the foetus is a person. This article argues that her thought experiments do not compare to the reality of abortion and focuses on the influence of the paper on arguments concerning personhood.
This study investigates the effects of internal and external corporate governance and monitoring mechanisms on the choice of corporate social responsibility (CSR) engagement and the value of firms engaging in CSR activities. The study finds the CSR choice is positively associated with the internal and external corporate governance and monitoring mechanisms, including board leadership, board independence, institutional ownership, analyst following, and anti- takeover provisions, after controlling for various firm characteristics. After correcting for endogeneity and simultaneity issues, the results show that (...) CSR engagement positively influences firm value measured by industry-adjusted Tobin’s q. We find that the impact of analyst following for firms that engage in CSR on firm value is strongly positive, while the board leadership, board independence, blockholders’ ownership, and institutional ownership play a relatively weaker role in enhancing firm value. Furthermore, we find that CSR activities that address internal social enhancement within the firm, such as employees diversity, firm relationship with its employees, and product quality, enhance the value of firm more than other CSR subcategories for broader external social enhancement such as community relation and environmental concerns. (shrink)
In this article, we examine the empirical association between corporate governance (CG) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) engagement by investigating their causal effects. Employing a large and extensive US sample, we first find that while the lag of CSR does not affect CG variables, the lag of CG variables positively affects firms’ CSR engagement, after controlling for various firm characteristics. In addition, to examine the relative importance of stakeholder theory and agency theory regarding the associations among CSR, CG, and corporate (...) financial performance (CFP), we also examine the relation between CSR and CFP. After correcting for endogeneity bias, our results show that CSR engagement positively influences CFP, supporting the conflict-resolution hypothesis based on stakeholder theory, but not the CSR overinvestment argument based on agency theory. Furthermore, firms’ CSR engagement with the community, environment, diversity, and employees plays a significantly positive role in enhancing CFP. (shrink)
Some argue that managers over-invest in corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities to build their personal reputations as good global citizens. Others claim that CEOs strategically choose CSR activities to reduce the probability of CEO turnover in a future period through indirect support from activists. Still others assert that firms use CSR activities to signal their product quality. We find that firms use governance mechanisms, along with CSR engagement, to reduce conflicts of interest between managers and non-investing stakeholders. Employing a large (...) and extensive sample of firms within Russell 2000, S& 500 and Domini 400 indices during the 1993-2004 period, we find that consistent with the conflict-resolution hypothesis, the CSR choice is positively associated with governance characteristics, including board independence, institutional ownership, and analyst following. In addition, after correcting for endogeneity of CSR engagement, our results show that CSR engagement positively influences operating performance and firm value, supporting the conflict-resolution hypothesis as opposed to the over-investment and strategic-choice arguments. We find only a weak support of the product-signaling hypothesis as a major motive of CSR engagement. (shrink)
In this article, we examine the empirical association between firm value and CSR engagement for firms in sinful industries, such as tobacco, gambling, and alcohol, as well as industries involved with emerging environmental, social, or ethical issues, i.e., weapon, oil, cement, and biotech. We develop and test three hypotheses, the window-dressing hypothesis, the value-enhancement hypothesis, and the value-irrelevance hypothesis. Using an extesive US sample from 1995 to 2009, we find that CSR engagement of firms in controversial industries positively affects firm (...) value after controlling for various firm characteristics. To address the potential endogeneity problem, we further estimate a system of equations and change regression and continue to find a positive relation between CSR engagement and firm value. Our findings support the value-enhancement hypothesis and are consistent with the premise that the top management of US firms in controversial industries, in general, considers social responsibility important even though their products are harmful to human being, society, or environment. (shrink)
In this paper, we examine the relation between corporate social responsibility (CSR) and firm risk in controversial industry sectors. We develop and test two competing hypotheses of risk reduction and window dressing. Employing an extensive U.S. sample during the 1991-2010 period from controversial industry firms, such as alcohol, tobacco, gambling, and others, we find that CSR engagement inversely affects firm risk after controlling for various firm characteristics. To deal with endogeneity issue, we adopt a system equation approach and difference regressions (...) and continue to find that CSR engagement of firms in controversial industry sectors negatively affects firm risk. To examine the premise that firm risk is more of an issue for controversial firms, we further examine the difference between non-controversial and controversial firm samples, and find that the effect of risk reduction through CSR engagement is more economically and statistically significant in controversial industry firms than in non-controversial industry firms. These findings support the risk-reduction hypothesis, but not the window-dressing hypothesis, and the notion that the top management of U.S. firms in controversial industries is, in general, risk averse and that their CSR engagement helps their risk management efforts. (shrink)
We empirically examine the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on CEO compensation using a large sample of the US firms from 1996 to 2010. We develop and test two hypotheses, the overinvestment hypothesis based on agency theory and the conflict–resolution hypothesis based on stakeholder theory. We find that the lag of CSR adversely affects both total compensation and cash compensation, after controlling for various firm and board characteristics. Our estimates show that an interquartile increase in CSR is followed by (...) a 4.35% (2.78%) decrease in total (cash) compensation. We also find an inverse association between lagged employee relations and CEO compensation. Our results are robust to the correction for endogeneity using instrumental variable approach. Taken together, our results support the conflict–resolution hypothesis, but not the CSR overinvestment argument. (shrink)
In this study, we examine whether corporate environmental responsibility plays a role in enhancing operating performance in the financial services sector. Because achieving success with CER investing is often a long-term process, we maintain that by effectively investing in CER, executives can decrease their firms’ environmental costs, thereby enhancing operating performance. By employing a unique environmental dataset covering 29 countries, we find that the reducing of environmental costs takes at least 1 or 2 years before enhancing return on assets. We (...) also find that reducing environmental costs has a more immediate and substantial effect on the performance of financial services firms in well-developed financial markets than in less-developed financial markets. These results are economically and statistically significant and robust even after alleviating endogeneity and using an additional performance measure. We interpret our empirical results as supporting the social impact and reputation-building hypothesis. Our findings also suggest that policy makers dealing with corporate sustainability management should pursue an environment-centered industry policy not only at the manufacturing sector but also at the financial services sector, as firms in both sectors with lower environmental costs perform better. (shrink)
The belief in free will has been frequently challenged since Benjamin Libet published his famous experiment in 1983. Although Libet’s experiment is highly dependent upon subjective reports, no study has been conducted that focused on a first-person or introspective perspective of the task. We took a neurophenomenological approach in an N = 1 study providing reliable and valid measures of the first-person perspective in conjunction with brain dynamics. We found that a larger readiness potential is attributable to more frequent occurrences (...) of self-initiated movements during negative deflections of the slow cortical potentials . These negative deflections occur in parallel with an inner impulse reported by an expert meditator which may in turn lead to a voluntary act. We demonstrate in this proof-of-principle approach that the first-person perspective obtained by an expert meditator in conjunction with neural signal analysis can contribute to our understanding of the neural underpinnings of voluntary acts. (shrink)
The issue of management’s relations to the environment has received a significant amount of attention in the literature on corporate social responsibility. Yet the influence of religion on managers’ environmental decisions has until now remained unexamined despite its known importance. In this article, we examine the empirical association between religion—primarily Christianity—and the environmental practices a firm’s management undertakes by investigating their OLS, principal component, simultaneous, and endogenous effects. Employing a large and extensive U.S. sample, we find a negative association between (...) the environmental practices initiated by a firm’s managers and the religiosity of the surrounding community, after controlling for various firm and demographic characteristics. In addition, after mitigating endogeneity with the dynamic system generalized method of moment, we still find an inverse association between religiosity and environmental-friendly decisions of management. We interpret these results as providing some support for the “dominion hypothesis” that claims Christian beliefs discourage environmental concern, but not for the “stewardship hypothesis” that implies that Christianity encourages people to “exercise a responsible stewardship over nature.” Nevertheless, additional analysis shows Christian groups differ significantly in how each influences managers’ environmental decisions. (shrink)
This article examines the empirical association between analyst coverage and corporate social responsibility (CSR) by investigating their simultaneous and causal effects, and its joint effects of CSR engagement and analyst coverage on firm risk. We find a positive association between the level and change of CSR engagement and the level and change of analyst coverage after considering simultaneity and causality. Based on the first-difference approach, we further find that the change in analyst following from the previous year affects the change (...) in CSR in the current period, whereas the change in CSR from the previous period does not influence the change in analyst following in the current period. Furthermore, we find that the change in CSR engagement as well as the interaction effect of changes in CSR and analyst coverage reduces the change of firm risk. When we examine the CSR strengths and concerns separately, analyst following does not significantly influence firms’ CSR strength but CSR concern activities decreases significantly as firms have more analyst followings. We further find the mediating role of financial analysts between CSR concerns (but not CSR strengths) and firm risk. We maintain that analysts provide indirect but additional social pressure to the firms to eventually reduce their irresponsible activities. Taken together, we interpret these results to support the stakeholder theory-based conflict-resolution explanation that considers CSR engagement as a vehicle to reduce conflicts of interest between managers and noninvesting stakeholders but not the overinvestment hypothesis that views CSR as a waste of valuable resources at the cost of shareholders. (shrink)
In this article, we examine the association between ethics and disclosure and the impact of this association on the long-term, post-issue performance of seasoned equity offerings (SEOs). We argue that firms with extensive disclosure are less likely to face information problems, and more likely to lead to an active shareholder monitoring, and therefore, engage in fewer unethical activities, such as aggressive earnings manipulation, and have better long-term, post-issue performance. Consistent with these predictions, this study presents evidence that disclosure is negatively (...) related to unethical earnings manipulation and positively associated with long-term, post-issue performance. In particular, we find that long-term, post-issue SEO underperformance is significantly less for firms with extensive disclosure and conservative earnings management than firms with less disclosure and aggressive earnings management. We interpret this evidence to mean that over the long run, the capital market values ethical financial reporting and corporate efforts to incorporate social responsibility into their decision-making processes, for example, by enhancing information transparency through voluntary disclosure. (shrink)
This study examines how the sell-side analysts interpret firms’ corporate social responsibility activities. Specifically, we examine the differential impact of overall, legal, and normative CSR on the analysts’ earnings forecast dispersion, stock return volatility, cost of equity capital, and firm value. Employing a sample of U.S. public firms during 1993–2009, we find that overall CSR intensities reduce analyst dispersion of earnings forecast, volatility of stock return and cost of capital , and increase firm value. However, its impact is reduced for (...) firms with better accounting and disclosure quality. When we disaggregate CSR into legal and normative CSR, we find that legal CSR decreases analysts’ dispersion, stock return volatility, and COC, while legal CSR increases firm value. The sell-side analysts tend to have less information asymmetry regarding the net benefits of pursuing CSR that is required by laws. We find, however, that the benefit of having normative CSR realized in 1 year lag such that analyst dispersion, stock return volatility, COC decrease, respectively, and firm value increases. Furthermore, we find that the benefit of normative CSR is offset for firms with higher accounting and disclosure quality. (shrink)
This study examines whether reputable analysts and brokerage houses as thinker-driven middlemen led corporations to engage in CSR by investigating the causal relation between CSR and analysts and brokerage houses’ reputations. While theory of information asymmetry predicts that corporations with higher level of CSR tend to attract more reputable analysts and brokerage houses such that they can disseminate valuable information to outside investors, the social pressure theory expects corporations, which receive coverage from more reputable analysts and brokerage houses, tend to (...) have higher CSR. Our findings suggest that CSR activities per se do not attract experienced analysts and reputable brokerage houses. Instead, we find that corporations which are covered by more experienced analysts and reputable brokerage houses tend to increase their CSR activities, indirectly supporting the social pressure hypothesis based on thinker-led-doer model. In addition, we find that corporations tend to have higher CSR strengths, lower CSR concerns, and increased CSR components of diversity and product when they are covered by more reputable analysts and brokerage houses. We interpret these findings are supportive of the social pressure hypothesis, rather than the information asymmetry hypothesis. (shrink)
Workforce diversity has received increasing amounts of attention from academics and practitioners alike. In this article, we examine the empirical association between a firm’s workforce diversity and the degree of religiosity of the firm’s management by investigating their unidirectional and endogenous effects. Employing a large and extensive U.S. sample of firms from the years 1991–2010, we find a positive association between a measure of the firm’s commitment to diversity and the religiosity of the firm’s management after controlling for various firm (...) characteristics. In addition, after controlling for endogeneity with the dynamic panel generalized method of moment, we still find a positive association between the firm’s diversity and management’s religiosity. We interpret these results as supportive of the religious motivation explanation that views the firm as a human community and considers religion as a factor that influences managers to more positively embrace diversity. Our results, however, provide no support for the resource-constraint hypothesis that views the firm as a nexus of contracts and sees managers as aiming to maximize shareholder returns under resource constraints that force them to invest only in projects that have a positive net present value and reject diversity initiatives since these do not have a positive NPV. (shrink)
BackgroundExperience with open disclosure and its study are restricted to certain western countries. In addition, there are concerns that open disclosure may be less suitable in non-western countries. The present study explored and compared the in-depth perceptions of the general public and physicians regarding open disclosure in Korea.MethodsWe applied the COREQ checklist to this qualitative study. We conducted 20 in-depth interviews and four focus group discussions with 16 physicians and 18 members of the general public. In-depth interviews and focus group (...) discussions were performed according to semi-structured guidelines developed according to a systematic review of open disclosure. We conducted a directed content analysis by analyzing the verbatim transcripts and field notes in accordance with the predetermined guidelines.ResultsOpen disclosure perceptions were summarized in terms of the “five Ws and one H”. All physician and general public participants acknowledged the normative justifiability of open disclosure. The participants mostly agreed on the known effects of open disclosure, but the physicians had negative opinions on its expected effects, such as decreased intention of the general public to file lawsuits and increased credibility of medical professionals. Generally, the participants thought that open disclosure is required for medical errors causing major harm. However, the physicians and general public had conflicting opinions on the need for open disclosure of near misses. Most physicians did not know how to conduct open disclosure and some physicians had bad experiences due to inappropriate or incomplete open disclosure.ConclusionPhysicians and the general public in Korea acknowledge the need for open disclosure. Guidelines according to the type of patient safety incident are required to encourage physicians to more readily conduct open disclosure. Furthermore, hospitals need to consider organizing a dedicated team and hiring experts for open disclosure. (shrink)
No theory seems to describe accurately and explain competently the new, unusual, and idiosyncratic Northeast Asian regional order phenomenon. It is because Northeast Asian specialists like the blind men have seen only one of the parts of the or a part of what is taking place in Northeast Asia. This paper attempts to employ a new, more appropriate, more productive analytical tool to understand and navigate efficiently the Northeast Asian regional order. The main objective of this paper is, what it (...) is and what is taking place in the empirical world when we say that something we call is taking place. (shrink)
Seventeen million people have died in civil wars and rebel violence has disrupted the lives of millions more. In a fascinating contribution to the active literature on civil wars, this book finds that some contemporary rebel groups actually comply with international law amid the brutality of civil conflicts around the world. Rather than celebrating the existence of compliant rebels, the author traces the cause of this phenomenon and argues that compliant rebels emerge when rebel groups seek legitimacy in the eyes (...) of domestic and international audiences that care about humanitarian consequences and human rights. By examining rebel groups' different behaviors such as civilian killing, child soldiering, and allowing access to detention centers, Compliant Rebels offers key messages and policy lessons about engaging rebel groups with an eye toward reducing civilian suffering in war zones. (shrink)
O comentário de Ludger apresenta uma originalidade: descortina o caminho de Jó, versículo a versículo, como o caminho da contemplação. Nas aflições a que é sujeito, Jó somente lentamente vai se conscientizando da extensão de sua miséria - e cai em profunda solidão e abandono da parte de Deus. No entanto, todos esses contratempos, no início, vão conduzindo Jó por um caminho inesperado.
The central problem of the book of Job is represented in the question on how to combine the evils of an innocent with the righteousness of God. For the current doctrine of earthly rewards, such a case would be paradoxical. If each one must be treated according to his works, as a righteous man can suffer? There is a link between suffering and personal sin. Against this strict correlation, Job stands up with all the strength of his innocence. He fights (...) desperately to rediscover God that evades and whose kindness he continues to believe in. God intercedes only to reveal the transcendence of his being and his designs and reduce Job to the silence. This is the religious message of the book of Job: man should persist in faith even when his soul isn’t quiet. The book of Job asks us: is there free religion or it is always a self seeking trade? Rich and prosperous, Job becomes poor and with no future at all. Nevertheless, Job remains faithful and recognizes that God has the absolute right of disposing of all that had given him. Job says: “If we accept God’s riches, shouldn’t we also accept evil?”. Job demonstrated that he is able to profess and live a free religion, without any reward shadow. (shrink)
Professor Margaret Jo Osler of the University of Calgary, an historian of early modern science and philosophy (and a member of the Board of Directors of the Journal of the History of Philosophy since 2002) died on September 15, 2010. Born on November 27, 1942, she proudly proclaimed herself to be a "red diaper baby" and particularly delighted in telling her right-wing friends how her middle name was her parents' homage to Stalin. An energetic scholar with a vibrant and positive (...) personality, Maggie, as everyone who worked with her came to call her, never considered retirement and was actively working right up to her diagnosis with pancreatic cancer in early July, 2010.After graduating from Swarthmore College in .. (shrink)
Jo Ann Boydston, 2 July 1924 - 25 January 2011Jo Ann Boydston enjoyed a distinguished career as general editor of the Collected Works of John Dewey and director of the Center for Dewey Studies at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Born in Poteau, Oklahoma of Choctaw Indian heritage, she graduated summa cum laude from Oklahoma State University in 1944. She received an M.A. from Oklahoma State (1947), a Ph.D. from Columbia University (1950), and honorary doctorates from Indiana University (1994) and Southern (...) Illinois University (2004).In 1961, Boydston joined the staff of a modest research project at Southern Illinois University called "Co-operative Research on Dewey Publications" as assistant to project .. (shrink)
Dans ce livre richement illustré et documenté, Marie-Jo Bonnet s'interroge sur la symbolique du couple de femmes dans l'art, en privilégiant l'exemple français, et ressuscite des figures d'artistes oubliées, comme Louise Janin, ou méconnues, telles Louise Abbéma ou Claude Cahun. Tribades, précieuses, amazones et garçonnes sont conviées à livrer leurs secrets : Marie-Jo Bonnet s'intéresse à la mise en scène du désir, longtemps orchestrée en fonction des attentes du spectateur masculin, ..
Case study: while on placement at a mental health day centre I was assigned to act as key-worker to Mr X, a working-class white man in his early 40s who has been diagnosed with several psychiatric disorders. Mr X also experiences poor physical health. Mr X has been diagnosed as ?having? obsessive compulsive disorder, major depressive disorder, anger management disorder, Tourette's syndrome and paranoia. He has also been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. For all these, he daily takes a powerful cocktail of (...) anti-depressants, mood-stabilizers, anti-psychotics and pain killers. From his file I noted that he had been discharged from the local community psychiatric team, so he no longer had regular and unproblematic access to either a psychiatrist or social worker. He had been receiving anger management therapy (AMT), but his attendance had been sporadic. Mr X had, he claimed, no real friends, or, as he put it, ?just mere acquaintances?. Mr X lives alone with his mother. Mr X was a new member at the day centre but had had a long career as a mental health service user (owing to his angry behaviours he had been ?asked to leave? his previous day centre). The stated and overt purpose of our relationship was to collaborate towards ameliorating his situation. This work more commonly consisted of offering emotional and practical support, but, when first assigned Mr X, I was told by my practice assessor that eventually I would be required to carry out a risk assessment of him. So, for the purposes of this essay, I will focus on the ethical problems and dilemmas I encountered in the progression leading towards, and the actual process of carrying out, an assessment of the supposed risk that Mr X may pose either to himself, others or both. (shrink)