Are philosophers of science limited to conducting autopsies on dead scientific theories, or might they also help resolve contemporary methodological disputes in science? This essay (1) gives an overview of thought experiments, especially in mathematics; (2) outlines three major positions on the current dose-response controversy for ionizing radiation; and (3) sketches an original mathematical thought experiment that might help resolve the low-dose radiation conflict. This thought experiment relies on the assumptions that radiation "hits'' are Poisson distributed and that background conditions (...) cause many more radiation-induced cancers than human activities. The essay closes by responding to several key objections to the position defended here. (shrink)
Are philosophers of science limited to conducting autopsies on dead scientific theories, or might they also help resolve contemporary methodological disputes in science? This essay gives an overview of thought experiments, especially in mathematics; outlines three major positions on the current dose-response controversy for ionizing radiation; and sketches an original mathematical thought experiment that might help resolve the low-dose radiation conflict. This thought experiment relies on the assumptions that radiation "hits" are Poisson distributed and that background conditions cause many more (...) radiation-induced cancers than human activities. The essay closes by responding to several key objections to the position defended here. (shrink)
Utilizing Rest's moral development and Victor and Cullen's ethical climate surveys, we examine differences in moral reasoning and ethical climate between board members in the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. Six for-profit corporations and seven not-for-profit corporations, all with base operations in a major midwestern state, participated in the study. We find that profit and not-for-profit boards may not differ in moral reasoning, but do exhibit different types of ethical climates. We also find that for-profit board members may utilize higher stages (...) of reasoning a greater percentage of the time than not-for-profit directors. In contrast, the ethical climates of the two types of organizations are significantly different. For-profit companies had climates higher in egoism than did not-for-profit companies. In addition, not-for-profit firms reflected higher benevolence factors than for-profit firms. Not-forprofit organizations also had somewhat higher, but not significantly different, mean scores on the principle factor compared to the for-profit organizations. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to present the results of a natural experiment involving academic cheating by university students. We explore the relationship of moral judgment to actual behavior, as well as the relationship between the honesty of students self-reports and the extent of cheating. We were able to determine the extent to which students actually cheated on the take-home portion of an accounting exam. The take-home problem was not assigned with the intent of inducing cheating among students. However, (...) the high rate of observed cheating prompted the instructor to return to class and ask the students to provide information on their motivation. The students' responses are the data analyzed in this natural experiment. We found that in a simple regression the relationship between moral judgment scores and cheating behavior was insignificant. However, when we tested whether including Utilizer scores affected the relationship of cheating and moral judgment we found that Utilizer affected the relationship significantly. Finally, we found that moral judgment and honesty were not related, but higher levels of cheating behavior related to less honesty. (shrink)
We explain three phenomena in legal discourse in terms of MacFarlane’s assessment-sensitive semantics: incompatible applications of law, assessments of statements about what is legally the case, and retrospective overruling. The claim is that assessment sensitivity fits in with the view, shared by many legal theorists at least with respect to hard cases, that the final adjudicator’s interpretation of legal sources is constitutive of the applied norm. We argue that there are strong analogies between certain kinds of statements in legal discourse (...) as understood in light of that view and discourse about matters of taste and future contingents. Thus, if assessment-sensitive semantics provides a compelling account of discourse about matters of taste and future contingents, then it likewise provides a compelling account of those statements in legal discourse. (shrink)
Recent, well-publicized accounting scandals have shown that the penalties outsiders impose on those found culpable of earnings management can be severe. However, less is known about how colleagues within internal labor markets respond when they believe fellow managers have managed earnings. Designers of responsibility accounting systems need to understand the reputational costs managers impose on one another within internal labor markets. In an experimental study, 159 evening MBA students were asked to assume the role of a manager in a company (...) and respond to a scenario in which another manager (the target manager) has the opportunity to engage in earnings management. Participants provided causal attributions, assessed the morality of the target manager, and indicated whether they would change their judgments about the target manager's reputation. The study manipulated three between-subjects factors: (1) whether the target manager chose to engage in earnings management, (2) whether the company's budgetary control system was rigid or flexible, and (3) whether the target manager's work history was average or above average. We found that causal attributions are affected more by the budgetary systems when the target did not manage earnings than when the manager did. We also found that morality judgments were significantly associated with the target manager's behavior, but not with the budgetary system. In addition, participants' judgments about the target manager's reputation were more strongly associated with morality judgments than with causal attributions. We discuss implications of the role of reputation in management control systems design. (shrink)
Sydney Shoemaker has recently given an account of emergent properties according to which emergent properties are a special type of structural property and the determination relation holding between emergent properties and their base properties is one of "mere nomological supervenience." According to Shoemaker, emergent properties are what he calls type-2 microstructural properties, whereas physical properties are type-1 microstructural properties. After highlighting the advantages of viewing emergent properties as a special class of microstructural properties, I show how according to his own (...) causal theory of properties type-2 microstructural properties actually reduce to type-1 microstructural properties, and thus do not truly count as emergent. I then suggest an alternative view according to which emergent properties are actually a third type of microstructural property, one not considered by Shoemaker. I conclude with reflections why we might view the dependence relation between emergent properties and their physical base properties as a causal relation rather than one of mere supervenience. (shrink)
As part of his case for emergent dualism, William Hasker proffers a _unity-of-_ _consciousness_ (UOC) argument against materialism. I formalize the argument and show how the warrant for two of its premises accrues from the warrant one assigns to two distinct theses about unified conscious experience. I then argue that though both unity theses are plausible, the materialist has little to fear from Hasker.
This paper is an investigation into the nature of physicalism as well as to the possibility of formulating physicalism as a supervenience thesis. First, I review the motivation for finding a supervenience thesis that characterizes physicalism. Second, I briefly survey the types of supervenience theses that have been proposed as necessary (or, in some cases, as necessary and sufficient) for physicalism. Third, I analyze the recent supervenience thesis proposed by Frank Jackson and expounded upon by Gene Witmer. Jackson claims the (...) supervenience thesis is both necessary and sufficient for physicalism; Witmer has proposed a different interpretation of one of the Jackson’s key notions and has suggested an amended supervenience thesis that is, if not sufficient, at least necessary for physicalism. However, I will argue that neither Jackson’s nor Witmer’s supervenience theses as stated are necessary for physicalism. (shrink)
Many authors have taken up the challenge of formulating physicalism as a supervenience thesis. These endeavors have met with varying response, but it seems that the general consensus still remains that a supervenience thesis that is both sufficient and necessary for physicalism has yet to be developed. Terence Horgan1 and Jaegwon Kim2 have most famously argued that supervenience theses are not sufficiently strong for physicalism. Nonetheless, several recent articles suggest that there are philosophers who still hold out hope for some (...) type of supervenience of the mental upon the physical being, if not both sufficient and necessary, at least necessary for physicalism.3 In this paper, I will 1) investigate some of the motivation for finding a supervenience thesis that characterizes physicalism, 2) briefly review the types of supervenience theses that have been proposed as necessary (or necessary and sufficient) for physicalism, and 3) investigate in some detail the recent supervenience thesis proposed by Frank Jackson and expounded upon by Gene Witmer. Jackson, in his recent book, claims to have a supervenience thesis that is both necessary and sufficient for physicalism. (shrink)
To je poziv k redefiniciji pojma zmotljivosti dokončnih sodnih odločb. Njegovo običajno razumevanje, ki temelji na delu Harta, je precej bolj problematično, kot pa se navadno predpostavlja. Avtor tu pokaže, da običajno razumevanje vodi v naslednje protislovje: je pravno pravilno storiti to, kar pravno ni pravilno.
Razprava je napisana v odgovor kritikam, ki so zadnja tri desetletja letele na ekspresivno ali izrazno pojmovanje pravil. Avtor najprej dokazuje, da ob izraznem pojmovanju lahko obravnavamo fakultativna dejanska stanja, ne da bi se v opisu normativnega sistema pri tem porodilo kakršnokoli protislovje. Nato pokaže, da je mogoče opisati (i) propozicijsko vsebino metapravil, ne da bi semantizirali kazalnik ilokucijske (normativne) moči predmetnega pravila, in (ii) dovolilno zaporo normativnega sistema, tudi če zanikamo pojmovno avtonomijo dovolitvenih dejanj. Na tej podlagi v sklepu (...) ponudi rešitev za izrazno ponazoritev pogojnih pravil. Medtem ko je prvi del razprave namenjen razjasnjevanju, predlogi iz zadnjega dela stremijo k napredku v izrazni teoriji, razširjeni med pravniki. (shrink)
Prvi del prispevka obravnava besedilno ustavo – in argument namena, s katerim razlagalci včasih radi istovetijo svoje odločitve v konkretnem sporu z voljo ustavopisca. Takšno rabo tega argumenta avtor izpodbije. Z miselnim eksperimentom pa nato utrjuje še, da bi ustavna teorija morala razlikovati med istočasno vplivnimi a) besedilno ustavo, b) predstavnoskladnimi oziroma ideološkimi ustavami in c) habitusom v smislu družbene ustave. | Besedilo je bilo napisano ob dvajsetletnici Ustave RS in objavljeno v jubilejnem zborniku: Igor Kaučič , Dvajset let Ustave (...) Republike Slovenije. Pomen ustavnosti in ustavna demokracija. (shrink)
Kristin Shrader-Frechette: Taking Action, Saving Lives: Our Duties to Protect Environmental and Public Health Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11948-011-9267-1 Authors Matthew Benjamin Reisman, Environmental Studies, The University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, USA Journal Science and Engineering Ethics Online ISSN 1471-5546 Print ISSN 1353-3452.