Bioethics has made a compelling case for the role of experience and empirical research in ethics. This may explain why the movement for empirical ethics has such a firm grounding in bioethics. However, the theoretical framework according to which empirical research contributes to ethics—and the specific role it can or should play—remains manifold and unclear. In this paper, we build from pragmatic theory stressing the importance of experience and outcomes in establishing the meaning of ethics concepts. We then propose three (...) methodological steps according to which the meaning of ethics concepts can be refined based on experience and empirical research: function identification, function enrichment, and function testing. These steps are explained and situated within the broader commitment of pragmatic ethics to a perspective of moral growth and human flourishing. We hope that this proposal will give specific direction to the bridging of theoretical and empirical research in ethics and thus support stronger actualization of ethics concepts. (shrink)
Contemporary philosophy has been characterized by the presence of a schizoid dualism between the analytic tradition and the fenomenologic-hermeneutic tradition. Its historical origin can be set in the Davos Congress, which sets off the beginning of the oblivion of another program, the philosophy of symbolic forms, proposed by E. Cassirer, and which nowadays can be considered as an alternative and possible surpassing direction of the above-mentioned dualism. That is, in short, the position sustained by M. Friedman in his recent monograph, (...) written in the context of the conviction of a crisis derived from the depauperation of the traditions and from the subsequent need for a re-orientation. The text offered provides a critical comment of Friedmans study, showing the point from which it can and must be completed and eventually corrected, and how its completion and correction are to be done.La filosofía contemporánea se hacaracterizadopor la presencia de un dualismo esquizoide entre la tradición analítica e la tradición fenomenológico hermenéutica. El origen histórico del mismo puede ser fijado en el Congreso de Davos, el cual, por otra parte, señala el comienzo del olvido de un otro programa, la filosofía de las formas simbólicas de E. Cassirer e que hoy puede ser considerado como alternativa e posible dirección de superación del dualismo mencionado. Tal es, en síntesis, la posición defendida por M. Friedman en su reciente monografía, escrita en el contexto de la convicción de una crisis derivada del agotamiento de las tradiciones y de la subsecuente necesidad de una reorientación. El texto que ofrecemos comenta críticamente el estudio de Friedman, mostrando donde y cómo él puede y debe ser completado o, eventualmente, corregido. (shrink)
Interest in the microfoundations of corporate social responsibility has grown over the past decade. In this study, we draw on social learning theory to examine the effects of prosocial leaders on followers’ motivation to engage in CSR practices, and consequently on their CSR performance. Further drawing from social learning theory, we propose that followers’ trait compliance and leader-member exchange moderate the above relationships by affecting the conceptual mechanisms of social rewards and role-modeling motives. We tested our hypotheses with data from (...) a sample of 138 employees who were responsible for implementing an organization-initiated CSR practice. Our results showed that among followers who were high in trait compliance, leaders’ prosocial motivation was positively associated with followers' CSR motivation. In addition, followers’ CSR motivation was positively related to their objective CSR performance when they had a high-quality relationship with their leaders. Our findings advance our understanding of the conditions under which leaders will be more versus less influential on followers’ motivation and engagement in CSR activities. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of our results. (shrink)
Hacaracterizadopor filosofia contemporânea a presença de um dualismo entre esquizóide tradição fenomenológica e hermenêutica analítico tradicional. A origem histórica do que pode ser fixado no Congresso Davos, que, aliás, marca o início da negligência de outro programa, a filosofia das formas simbólicas de E. Cassirer e hoje pode ser considerado como uma direção alternativa e possível para a superação do dualismo mencionados. Tal, em breve, a posição defendida por M. Friedman em sua monografia recente, escrito no contexto da convicção de (...) uma crise resultante do esgotamento das tradições e subsequente necessidade de reorientação. O texto oferece um estudo crítico diz Friedman, mostrando onde e como ele pode e deve ser concluída ou, se necessário, corrigidos. (shrink)
p. cm. — (Zeuthen lecture book series) Includes bibliographical references (p. ) and index. ISBN 0-262-18187-8 (hardcover : alk. paper). — ISBN 0-262-68100-5 (pbk. : alk. paper) 1. Decision-making. 2. Economic man. 3. Game theory. 4. Rational expectations (Economic theory) I. Title. II. Series.
Cognitive penetration of perception, broadly understood, is the influence that the cognitive system has on a perceptual system. The paper shows a form of cognitive penetration in the visual system which I call ‘architectural’. Architectural cognitive penetration is the process whereby the behaviour or the structure of the perceptual system is influenced by the cognitive system, which consequently may have an impact on the content of the perceptual experience. I scrutinize a study in perceptual learning that provides empirical evidence that (...) cognitive influences in the visual system produce neural reorganization in the primary visual cortex. The type of cognitive penetration can be synchronic and diachronic. (shrink)
Both traditional accounts of hope and some of their recent critics analyze hope exclusively in terms of attitudes that a hoper bears towards a hoped-for prospect, such as desire and probability assignment. I argue that all of these accounts misidentify cases of despair as cases of hope, and so misconstrue the nature of hope. I show that a more satisfactory view is arrived at by noticing that in addition to the aforementioned attitudes, hope involves a characteristic attitude towards an external (...) factor, on whose operation the hoper takes the prospect's realization to depend causally. (shrink)
The paper is a discussion of the interpretation of game theory. Game theory is viewed as an abstract inquiry into the concepts used in social reasoning when dealing with situations of conflict and not as an attempt to predict behavior. The first half of the paper..
Arising out of the author's lifetime fascination with the links between the formal language of mathematical models and natural language, this short book comprises five essays investigating both the economics of language and the language of economics. Ariel Rubinstein touches the structure imposed on binary relations in daily language, the evolutionary development of the meaning of words, game-theoretical considerations of pragmatics, the language of economic agents and the rhetoric of game theory. These short essays are full of challenging ideas (...) for social scientists that should help to encourage a fundamental rethinking of many of the underlying assumptions in economic theory and game theory. As a postscript two economists, Tilman Borgers and Bart Lipman, and a logician, Johan van Benthem offer comments. (shrink)
An interesting metatheoretical controversy took place during the 1980’s and 1990’s between pattern and phylogenetic cladists. What was always at stake in the discussion was not how work in systematics should be carried out, but rather how this practice should be metatheoretically interpreted. In this article, we criticize Pearson’s account of the metatheoretical factors at play in this discussion. Following him, we focus on the issue of circularity, and on the role that phylogenetic hypotheses play in the determination of “primary (...) homologies”. Pearson argues that the recognition of primary homologies cannot be achieved without recourse to previous phylogenetic knowledge, and that to claim otherwise is to state that primary homologies are observable. To show why that view would be inadequate, he appeals to Hanson’s views about theory-laden observation, alongside with a specific case study, which allegedly illustrates the more complex relation between observation and theory. We will argue that the pattern cladists’ point is better addressed by taking a quite different approach: instead of thinking in terms of observability, the topic can be tackled by paying attention to the way in which concepts are determined. We will take the notion of T-theoricity from metatheoretical structuralism and show that, once the issue is discussed with the appropriate metatheoretical framework, the alleged counterexample brought up by Pearson is not problematic at all for pattern cladism. (shrink)
Generics and frequency statements are puzzling phenomena: they are lawlike, yet contingent. They may be true even in the absence of any supporting instances, and extending the size of their domain does not change their truth conditions. Generics and frequency statements are parametric on time, but not on possible worlds; they cannot be applied to temporary generalizations, and yet are contingent. These constructions require a regular distribution of events along the time axis. Truth judgments of generics vary considerably across speakers, (...) whereas truth judgments of frequency statements are much more uniform. A generic may be false even if the vast majority of individuals in its domain satisfy the predicated property, whereas a frequency statement using, e.g., usually would be true. This paper argues that all these seemingly unrelated puzzles have a single underlying cause: generics and frequency statements express probability judgments, and these, in turn, are interpreted as statements of hypothetical relative frequency. (shrink)
The distribution of indefinite singular generics is much more restricted than that of bare plural generics. The former, unlike the latter, seem to require that the property predicated of their subject be, in some sense, ‘definitional’. Moreover, the two constructions exhibit different scopal behaviour, and differ in their felicity in conjunctions, questions, and expressions describing the speaker's confidence. I propose that the reason is that the two expressions, in fact, have rather different meanings. Carlson (1995) makes a distinction between inductivist (...) and rules‐and‐regulations theories of generics. Instead, I draw a distinction between inductivist and rules‐and‐regulations readings of generics. On one reading, a generic expresses the way things are, and its logical form involves quantification; on the other reading, a generic refers to some rule or regulation (often a definition), and states that it is in effect. While bare plurals are ambiguous between the two readings, indefinite singulars can only refer to a rule or a regulation. This difference between the two constructions follows from the fact that bare plurals, but not (nonspecific) indefinite singulars, are acceptable topics. The topic of bare plural generics, then, is the bare plural itself. It is mapped onto the restrictor of the generic quantifier, hence an inductivist reading is available. In contrast, this option is not open to indefinite singular generics. Thus, an inductivist reading is ruled out, and the only possible topic is a rule or regulation. The various differences between the two types of generic are then shown to follow. (shrink)
In this article, I examine the issue of the alleged circularity in the determination of homologies within cladistic analysis. More specifically, I focus on the claims made by the proponents of the dynamic homology approach, regarding the distinction between primary and secondary homology. This distinction is sometimes invoked to dissolve the circularity issue, by upholding that characters in a cladistic data matrix have to be only primarily homologous, and thus can be determined independently of phylogenetic hypotheses, by using the classical (...) Owenian criteria or via multiple sequence alignment. However, since in the dynamic approach, sequence data can be analyzed without being pre-aligned, proponents have claimed that the distinction between primary and secondary homology has no place within cladistics. I will argue that this is not the case, since cladistic practice within the dynamic framework does presuppose primary homology statements at a higher level. (shrink)
It is widely agreed that generics tolerate exceptions. It turns out, however, that exceptions are tolerated only so long as they do not violate homogeneity: when the exceptions are not concentrated in a salient “chunk” of the domain of the generic. The criterion for salience of a chunk is cognitive: it is dependent on the way in which the domain is mentally represented. Findings of psychological experiments about the ways in which different domains are represented, and the actors affecting such (...) representations, account for judgments of generic sentences, facts which cannot be explained by linguistics alone. The reason for the homogeneity requirement itself is, in turn, also dependent on cognitive considerations. Generics express default rules, and psychological findings have shown that, the more homogeneous the domain, the easier it is for subjects to infer rules about it. Thus, cognitive results form a crucial part of a comprehensive account of the meaning of a linguistic expression. (shrink)
What on earth are economic theorists like me trying to accomplish? This paper discusses four dilemmas encountered by an economic theorist: The dilemma of absurd conclusions: Should we abandon a model if it produces absurd conclusions or should we regard a model as a very limited set of assumptions that will inevitably fail in some contexts? The dilemma of responding to evidence: Should our models be judged according to experimental results? The dilemma of modelless regularities: Should models provide the hypothesis (...) for testing or are they simply exercises in logic that have no use in identifying regularities? The dilemma of relevance: Do we have the right to offer advice or to make statements that are intended to influence the real world? (shrink)