Responsible leadership is rare. It is not that most leaders are irresponsible, but responsibility in leadership is frequently defined so that an important connotation of responsible leadership is ignored. This article equates responsible leadership with virtuousness. Using this connotation implies that responsible leadership is based on three assumptions—eudaemonism, inherent value, and amplification. Secondarily, this connotation produces two important outcomes—a fixed point for coping with change, and benefits for constituencies who may never be affected otherwise. The meaning and advantages of responsible (...) leadership as virtuous leadership are discussed. (shrink)
Virtuousness refers to the pursuit of the highest aspirations in the human condition. It is characterized by human impact, moral goodness, and unconditional societal betterment. Several writers have recently argued that corporations, in addition to being concerned with ethics, should also emphasize an ethos of virtuousness in corporate action. Virtuousness emphasizes actions that go beyond the “do no harm” assumption embedded in most ethical codes of conduct. Instead, it emphasizes the highest and best of the human condition. This research empirically (...) examines the buffering and amplifying effects of virtuousness in organizations. The study hypothesizes that virtuousness has a positive effect on organizations because amplifying dynamics make subsequent virtuous action more likely, and buffering dynamics reduce the harmful effects of downsizing. The study reveals that two types of virtuousness – tonic and phasic – are associated with these effects. (shrink)
This Korean study replicated a previously published American study. The conceptual framework and method combined ethical enquiry and phenomenology. The research questions were: (1) What is nursing students’ experience of ethical problems involving nursing practice? and, (2) What is nursing students’ experience of using an ethical decision-making model? The participants were 97 senior baccalaureate nursing students, each of whom described one ethical problem and chose to use one of five ethical decision-making models. From 97 ethical problems, five content categories emerged, (...) the largest being health professionals (69%). The basic nature of the ethical problems was the students’ experience of conflict, resolution and rationale. Using an ethical decision-making model helped 94% of the students. A comparison of the Korean and American results yields important implications for nursing ethics education, practice and research. (shrink)
Logical and moral arguments have been made for the organizational importance of ethos or virtuousness, in addition to ethics and responsibility. Research evidence is beginning to provide, empirical support for such normative claims. This paper considers the relationship between ethics and ethos in contemporary organizations by summarizing emerging findings that link virtuousness and performance. The effect of virtue in organizations derives from its buffering and amplifying effects, both of which are described.
This paper critically reviews and discusses the concept of organizational virtuousness as presented in positive organizational scholarship. It identifies Kim S. Cameron, David S. Bright, and Arran Caza as the most influential researchers within this field and portrays commonalities, differences, and inconsistencies among the various notions of organizational virtuousness offered in positive organizational literature throughout the last 15 years. While the commonalities refer to attributes, levels of analyses, outcomes, and methodology, the variances concern the locus of residence, the priority (...) of outcomes, indicators, supporting features and the virtues included in positive organizational virtuousness. The analysis further discusses the strengths and weaknesses of these differences and stresses the challenges which the POS movement needs to face in order to clarify its definition of organizational virtuousness and, maybe, converge on one unified meaning. Finally, these challenges are summarized and linked to future research proposals which offer potential ideas on how to further develop the concept of positive organizational virtuousness. (shrink)
Paul Sheehy has argued that the modal realist cannot satisfactorily allow for the necessity of God's existence. In this short paper I show that she can, and that Sheehy only sees a problem because he has failed to appreciate all the resources available to the modal realist. God may be an abstract existent outside spacetime or He may not be: but either way, there is no problem for the modal realist to admit that He exists at every concrete possible world.
Paul Sheehy has argued that the modal realist cannot satisfactorily allow for the necessity of God’s existence. In this short paper I show that she can, and that Sheehy only sees a problem because he has failed to appreciate all the resources available to the modal realist. God may be an abstract existent outside spacetime or He may not be: but either way, there is no problem for the modal realist to admit that He exists at every concrete possible world.
I respond to Tim Smartt’s (2023) skepticism about epistemic blame. Smartt’s skepticism is based on the claims that i) mere negative epistemic evaluation can better explain everything proponents of epistemic blame say we need epistemic blame to explain; and ii) no existing account of epistemic blame provides a plausible account of the putative force that any response deserving the label “blame” ought to have. He focuses primarily on the prominent “relationship-based” account of epistemic blame to defend these claims, arguing that (...) the account is explanatorily idle, and cannot distinguish between epistemically excused and epistemically blameworthy agents. I argue that Smartt mischaracterizes the account’s role for judgments of epistemic relationship impairment, leading to mistaken claims about the account’s predictions. I also argue that the very feature of the account that Smartt mischaracterizes is key to understanding what epistemic blame does for our epistemic responsibility practices that mere negative epistemic evaluation cannot. (shrink)
This book provides a framework for thinking about foundational philosophical questions surrounding machine learning as an approach to artificial intelligence. Specifically, it links recent breakthroughs in deep learning to classical empiricist philosophy of mind. In recent assessments of deep learning's current capabilities and future potential, prominent scientists have cited historical figures from the perennial philosophical debate between nativism and empiricism, which primarily concerns the origins of abstract knowledge. These empiricists were generally faculty psychologists; that is, they argued that the active (...) engagement of general psychological faculties-such as perception, memory, imagination, attention, and empathy-enables rational agents to extract abstract knowledge from sensory experience. This book explains a number of recent attempts to model roles attributed to these faculties in deep neural network based artificial agents by appeal to the faculty psychology of philosophers such as Aristotle, Ibn Sina (Avicenna), John Locke David Hume, William James, and Sophie de Grouchy. It illustrates the utility of this interdisciplinary connection by showing how it can provide benefits to both philosophy and computer science: computer scientists can continue to mine the history of philosophy for ideas and aspirational targets to hit on the way to more robustly rational artificial agents, and philosophers can see how some of the historical empiricists' most ambitious speculations can be realized in specific computational systems. (shrink)
The World is Born From Zero is an investigation into the relationship between video games and science fiction through the philosophy of speculation. Cameron Kunzelman argues that the video game medium is centered on the evaluation and production of possible futures by following video game studies, media philosophy, and science fiction studies to their furthest reaches. Claiming that the best way to understand games is through rigorous formal analysis of their aesthetic strategies and the cultural context those strategies emerge (...) from, Kunzelman investigates a diverse array of games like The Last of Us, VA-11 Hall-A, and Civilization VI in order to explore what science fiction video games can tell us about their genres, their ways of speculating, and how the medium of the video game does (or does not) direct us down experiential pathways that are both oppressive and liberatory. Taking a multidisciplinary look at these games, The World is Born From Zero offers a unique theorization of science fiction games that provides both science fiction studies and video game studies with new tools for thinking how this medium and mode inform each other. (shrink)
An analysis and rebuttal of Jaegwon Kim's reasons for taking nonreductive physicalism to entail the causal irrelevance of mental features to physical phenomena, particularly the behaviour of human bodies.
This paper presents three explanations of why Frege took the universal, rather than the existential, quantifier as primitive in his formalization of logic. The first two explanations provide technical reasons related to how Frege formalizes the logic of truth-functions and the logic of quantification. The third, philosophical explanation locates the reason in Frege's logicist goal of analyzing arithmetical concepts---especially the concepts of 0 and 1---in purely logical terms.
Does Aristotle offer a definition of the soul? In fact, he rejects the possibility of defining the soul univocally. Because “life” is a homonymous concept, so too is “soul”. Given the specific causal role that Aristotle envisages for form and essence, the soul requires multiple different definitions to capture how it functions as a cause in each form of life. Aristotle suggests demonstrations can be given which express these causal definitions; I reconstruct these demonstrations in the paper.
This book is part of the growing field of practical approaches to philosophical questions relating to identity, agency and ethics, working across continental and analytical traditions. Kim Atkins explains and justifies the basis of the practical approach through an explication of the structures of human embodiment and an account of how those structures necessitate a narrative model of selfhood, understanding and ethics. She highlights how recent work on agency and autonomy implicitly draws upon conceptions of embodiment and intersubjectivity that underpin (...) the narrative view. (shrink)
Ross P. Cameron argues that the flow of time is a genuine feature of reality. He suggests that the best version of the A-Theory is a version of the Moving Spotlight view, according to which past and future beings are real, but there is nonetheless an objectively privileged present. Cameron argues that the Moving Spotlight theory should be viewed as having more in common with Presentism than with the B-Theory. Furthermore, it provides the best account of truthmakers for (...) claims about what was or will be the case. Cameron goes on to defend an account of the open future, and argues that this is a better account than that available to the Growing Block theory. (shrink)
Decades of research conducted in Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, & Democratic (WEIRD) societies have led many scholars to conclude that the use of mental states in moral judgment is a human cognitive universal, perhaps an adaptive strategy for selecting optimal social partners from a large pool of candidates. However, recent work from a more diverse array of societies suggests there may be important variation in how much people rely on mental states, with people in some societies judging accidental harms just (...) as harshly as intentional ones. To explain this variation, we develop and test a novel cultural evolutionary theory proposing that the intensity of kin-based institutions will favor less attention to mental states when judging moral violations. First, to better illuminate the historical distribution of the use of intentions in moral judgment, we code and analyze anthropological observations from the Human Area Relations Files. This analysis shows that notions of strict liability—wherein the role for mental states is reduced—were common across diverse societies around the globe. Then, by expanding an existing vignette-based experimental dataset containing observations from 321 people in a diverse sample of 10 societies, we show that the intensity of a society's kin-based institutions can explain a substantial portion of the population-level variation in people's reliance on intentions in three different kinds of moral judgments. Together, these lines of evidence suggest that people's use of mental states has coevolved culturally to fit their local kin-based institutions. We suggest that although reliance on mental states has likely been a feature of moral judgment in human communities over historical and evolutionary time, the relational fluidity and weak kin ties of today's WEIRD societies position these populations' psychology at the extreme end of the global and historical spectrum. (shrink)
There is a widely accepted distinction between being directly responsible for a wrongdoing versus being somehow indirectly or vicariously responsible for the wrongdoing of another person or collective. Often this is couched in analyses of complicity, and complicity’s role in the relationship between individual and collective wrongdoing. Complicity is important because, inter alia, it allows us to make sense of individuals who may be blameless or blameworthy to a relatively low degree for their immediate conduct, but are nevertheless blameworthy to (...) a higher degree for their implication in some larger (or another person’s) wrongdoing. In this paper, I argue that there is a distinctively epistemic kind of complicity. First, I motivate the distinction between direct and vicarious responsibility with three interlocking arguments, respectively appealing to: i) the structure of rational agency; ii) linguistic considerations; iii) the role of “principal vs. accomplice” in legal doctrine. I show how these arguments naturally extend to the epistemic domain, motivating an epistemic form of vicarious responsibility. I then examine complicity as a mechanism of vicarious epistemic responsibility. To fill this out, I engage with an epistemic analogue of the debate about the role of intention versus causal contribution in complicity. I propose a Casual Account of Epistemic Complicity, arguing that it accommodates a wide range of cases, and enables fine-grained explanations of degrees of culpability for epistemic complicity. With an adequate account of epistemic complicity on hand, we can explain what is objectionable about an important class of epistemic agent who, on an individual level, may be epistemically blameless or blameworthy to a relatively low degree, but whose relation to other individuals or collectives nevertheless makes them epistemically blameworthy to a higher degree. I explore some broader implications of this result. (shrink)
Kim :1099–1112, 2013) defends a logicist theory of numbers. According to him, numbers are adverbial entities, similar to those denoted by “frequently” and “at 100 mph”. He even introduces new adverbs for numbers: “1-wise”, “2-wise”, and so on. For example, “Fs exist 2-wise” means that there are two Fs. Kim claims that, because we can derive Dedekind–Peano axioms from his definition of numbers as adverbial entities, it is a new form of logicism. In this paper, I will, however, argue that (...) his theory is vulnerable to an analogue of the so-called Bad Company objection to neo-Fregeanism. This means that we cannot be sure that numbers are actually given to us by Kim’s definition; for, we don’t know whether it is indeed a good definition. So, unless Kim, or somebody else, provides a demarcation criterion between good and bad adverbial definitions, Kim’s theory will remain incomplete. (shrink)