Many publicly-funded health systems apply cost-benefit frameworks in response to the moral dilemma of how best to allocate scarce healthcare resources. However, implementation of recommendations based on costs and benefit calculations and subsequent challenges have led to ‘special cases’ with certain types of health benefits considered more valuable than others. Recent debate and research has focused on the relative value of life extensions for people with terminal illnesses. This research investigates societal perspectives in relation to this issue, in the UK.
Background Egg freezing has emerged as a technology of assisted reproductive medicine that allows women to plan for the anticipated loss of fertility and hence to preserve the option to conceive with their own eggs. The technology is surrounded by value-conflicts and is subject to ongoing discussions. This study aims at contributing to the empirical-ethical debate by exploring women’s viewpoints on egg freezing in Austria, where egg freezing for social reasons is currently not allowed. Methods Q-methodology was used to identify (...) prevailing viewpoints on egg freezing. 46 female participants ranked a set of 40 statements onto a 9-column forced choice ranking grid according to the level of agreement. Participants were asked to explain their ranking in a follow-up survey. By-person factor analysis was used to identify distinct viewpoints which were interpreted using both the quantitative and the qualitative data. Results Three distinct viewpoints were identified: “women should decide for themselves”, “we should accept nature but change policy”, and “we need an informed societal debate”. These viewpoints provide insights into how biomedical innovations such as egg freezing are perceived by women in Austria and illustrate the normative tensions regarding such innovations. Conclusions Acknowledging the different prioritizations of values regarding assisted reproductive technologies is important to better understand the underlying normative tensions in a country where egg freezing for social reasons is currently not allowed. The study adds new empirical insights to the ongoing debate by outlining and discussing viewpoints of those directly affected: women. Following up on the lay persons perspective is particularly important in the context of future biomedical innovations that may challenge established norms and create new tensions. It therefore also adds to the societal debate and supports evidence-informed policy making in that regard. (shrink)
Although applications are being developed and have reached the market, nanopharmacy to date is generally still conceived as an emerging technology. Its concept is ill-defined. Nanopharmacy can also be construed as a converging technology, which combines features of multiple technologies, ranging from nanotechnology to medicine and ICT. It is still debated whether its features give rise to new ethical issues or that issues associated with nanopharma are merely an extension of existing issues in the underlying fields. We argue here that, (...) regardless of the alleged newness of the ethical issues involved, developments occasioned by technological advances affect the roles played by stakeholders in the field of nanopharmacy to such an extent that this calls for a different approach to responsible innovation in this field. Specific features associated with nanopharmacy itself and features introduced to the associated converging technologies- bring about a shift in the roles of stakeholders that call for a different approach to responsibility. We suggest that Value Sensitive Design is a suitable framework to involve stakeholders in addressing moral issues responsibly at an early stage of development of new nanopharmaceuticals. (shrink)
Teaching requires much emotion work which takes its toll on teachers. Emotion work is usually studied from one of two perspectives, a job or an individual perspective. In this study, we assessed the relative importance of these two perspectives in predicting emotional exhaustion. More than 200 teachers completed a questionnaire comprising the DISQ , the Dutch Questionnaire on Emotional Labour , and the UBOS . In line with previous studies, our findings indicated that emotional exhaustion is positively associated with emotional (...) job demands and surface acting. The relative importance of the two operationalisations of emotion work was assessed by comparing the results of two regression analyses. Whereas the model with job demands explained 18% of the variance, the model with emotional labour explained only 5%. In understanding what might contribute to emotional exhaustion in teachers, the emotional job demands might be much more important than the self‐regulation perspective that is measured with emotional labour. (shrink)
In response to an increasing amount of policy papers stressing the need for integrating social and ethical aspects in Research and Development (R&D) practices, science studies scholars have conducted integrative research and experiments with science and innovation actors. One widely employed integration method is Midstream Modulation (MM), in which an ‘embedded humanist’ interacts in regular meetings with researchers to engage them with the social and ethical aspects of their work. While the possibility of using MM to enhance critical reflection has (...) been demonstrated in academic settings, few attempts have been made to examine its appropriateness in industry. This paper describes the outcomes of a case study aiming to find out firstly whether MM can effectively be deployed to encourage and facilitate researchers to actively include social and ethical aspects in their daily R&D practice, and secondly to what extent the integration activities could form an integral part of the engaged industrial researchers’ professional activities. Our data show that after MM, researchers display increased reflexive awareness on the social and ethical aspects of their work and acknowledge the relevance and utility of such aspects on their daily practice. Also, all participants considered actively reflecting on social and ethical aspects to be part of their work. Future research on the role of MM in industrial settings could focus on how to embed social and ethical integration as a regular part of innovation practice. We suggest that one possibility would be through aligning social and ethical aspects with innovation Key Performance Indicators. (shrink)
Si l’on retient surtout de l’œuvre de Claudel une certaine conception de l’espérance, de la joie et du triomphe religieux, on oublie, par contre, assez souvent qu’il y a chez cet écrivain toute une réflexion concernant le mystère et le problème du mal. C’est pourquoi, afin de mettre en relief cet aspect, l’A. a choisi de comparer la première œuvre de Claudel, Tête d’or , avec le livre de Job. Il suit ainsi pas à pas la structure du livre biblique (...) pour mieux dégager ensuite l’importance des thèmes jobiens dans la pièce de Claudel. Plus largement encore, cet article vise à montrer combien l’auteur, dans la rédaction de Tête d’or, s’est imprégné d’un certain ton biblique, particulièrement représenté par l’Ecclésiaste. (shrink)
Ministers of religion have a unique occupation with designated job demands and incongruous resources at their disposal. Literature indicates that stressors within the work environment are significant predictors of work-nonwork interference. Ministers play a key role within society and provide support for individuals on multiple levels. However, limited studies are found in South Africa focussing on ministers' job characteristics related to work-nonwork interference, and how ministers cope. The main objective of this study was to investigate job demands and job resources (...) as significant predictors of work-nonwork interference amongst ministers of religion, and to identify which coping strategies are most significant for ministers in dealing with work-nonwork interference. A cross-sectional survey design was used amongst ministers working in the three sister churches. Various instruments were administered to measure job characteristics, work-nonwork interference and coping strategies empirically. Statistical analyses included descriptive statistics, product-moment correlations and multiple regression analyses. Results indicated that for ministers different job demands and job resources significantly predicted work-parent, work-home and work-religion/spirituality interference. Results indicated turning to religion as the only significant coping strategy used by ministers to deal with work-parent interference and work-religion interference. Ministers of religion are continually exposed to increasing job demands and a lack of job resources, and therefore experience work-nonwork interference. Nevertheless, the ministers apparently cope by using the strategy best related to their profession, turning to religion/spirituality. Turning to religion/spirituality seems to be the most effective in dealing with work-nonwork interference. (shrink)
Het is moeilijk om de christelijke instelling te aanvaarden dat het kwaad in het menselijk bestaan en dat het vele leed dat hieruit voorvloeit in een door God gewilde ordening past. Alleen de niet-christelijke visie van een dualistische bestaansorde, waarin goed en kwaad als in een ying-yang cirkel onverbrekelijk vereend zijn, biedt een verklaring, die zowel voor het verstand als voor het gevoel aanvaardbaar is.
Interpersonal respect can be differentiated into two kinds: horizontal respect, i.e. treating someone with dignity; and vertical respect, i.e. genuinely honoring someone’s merits. With the present research, we draw on motivation theory to explore their interplay in leadership relations. Specifically, we argue for a moderated mediation hypothesis in that leaders’ horizontal respect for their subordinates fundamentally speaks to subordinates’ self-determination and that the message of respectful leadership is enhanced by the vertical respect subordinates have for their leaders. As a result, (...) subordinates are more satisfied with their jobs, which should also show in a decreased willingness to leave. The proposed model was supported in two survey studies and an experimental scenario study —thus suggesting that perceived leader behavior needs to be complemented by leader standing. (shrink)
Philippe Van Parijs's ethical justification of basic income is based on the argument that job resources must be shared equally. Underlying this idea are two important claims: all individuals in society hold an ex ante entitlement in job resources and job resources are tradable. First, I present the real-libertarian argument for sharing job resources. Next, I identify and critically review three different objections against this view: the liability objection, the cooperation objection and the parasitism objection. I believe the parasitism objection (...) poses a serious challenge to basic income, and argue that Van Parijs's most plausible response - based on the idea that job resources are socially owned - is flawed. I provide the outline of an alternative normative basis for grounding a person's ex ante entitlement to job resources using an institutionalist approach. (shrink)
The conclusions drawn by Benjamin Libet from his work with collegues on the timing of somatosensorial conscious experiences has met with a lot of praise and criticism. In this issue we find three examples of the latter. Here I attempt to place the divide between the two opponent camps in a broader perspective by analyzing the question of the relation between physical timing, neural timing, and experiential timing. The nervous system does a sophisticated job of recombining and recoding messages from (...) the sensorial surfaces and if these processes are slighted in a theory, it might become necessary to postulate weird operations, including subjective back-referral. Neuroscientifically inspired theories are of necessity still based on guesses, extrapolations, and philosophically dubious manners of speech. They often assume some neural correlate of consciousness as a part of the nervous system that transforms neural activity in reportable experiences. The majority of neuroscientists appear to assume that the NCC can compare and bind activity patterns only if they arrive simultaneously at the NCC. This leads to a search for synchrony or to theories in terms of the compensation of differences in neural delays . This is the main dimension of the Libet discussion. Examples from vision research, such as “temporal-binding-by-synchrony” and the “flash-lag” effect, are then used to illustrate these reasoning patterns in more detail. Alternatively one could assume symbolic representations of time and space that are not coded in their own dimension . Unless such tags are multiplexed with the quality message , one gets a binding problem for tags. One of the hidden aspects of the discussion between Libet and opponents appears to be the following. Is the NCC smarter than the rest of the nervous system, so that it can solve the problems of local sign and timing on its own, or are these pieces of information coded symbolically early on in the system? A supersmart NCC appears to be the assumption of Libet's camp . The wish to distribute the smartness evenly across all stages of processing in the nervous system appears to motivate the opponents. I argue that there are reasons to side with the latter group. (shrink)
Research on work values shows that respectful leadership is highly desired by employees. On the applied side, however, the extant research does not offer many insights as to which concrete leadership behaviors are perceived by employees as indications of respectful leadership. Thus, to offer such insights, we collected and content analyzed employees’ narrations of encounters with respectful leadership ( N 1 = 426). The coding process resulted in 19 categories of respectful leadership spanning 149 leadership behaviors. Furthermore, to also harness (...) this comprehensive repertoire for quantitative organizational research, we undertook two more studies ( N 2a = 228; N 2b = 412) to empirically derive a feasible item-based measurement of respectful leadership and assess its psychometric qualities. In these studies, we additionally investigated the relationships between respectful leadership as assessed with this new measurement and employees’ vertical and contextual followership as assessed via subordinates’ identification with their leaders, their appraisal respect for their leaders, their feeling of self-determination, and their job satisfaction. (shrink)