In recent years, we have seen a new concern with ethics training for research and development professionals. Although ethics training has become more common, the effectiveness of the training being provided is open to question. In the present effort, a new ethics training course was developed that stresses the importance of the strategies people apply to make sense of ethical problems. The effectiveness of this training was assessed in a sample of 59 doctoral students working in the biological and social (...) sciences using a pre–post design with follow-up and a series of ethical decision-making measures serving as the outcome variable. Results showed not only that this training led to sizable gains in ethical decision making but also that these gains were maintained over time. The implications of these findings for ethics training in the sciences are discussed. (shrink)
Objective: The field of clinical ethics is relatively new and expanding. Best practices in clinical ethics against which one can benchmark performance have not been clearly articulated. The first step in developing benchmarks of clinical ethics services is to identify and understand current practices.Design and setting: Using a retrospective case study approach, the structure, activities, and resources of nine clinical ethics services in a large metropolitan centre are described, compared, and contrasted.Results: The data yielded a unique and detailed account of (...) the nature and scope of clinical ethics services across a spectrum of facilities. General themes emerged in four areas—variability, visibility, accountability, and complexity. There was a high degree of variability in the structures, activities, and resources across the clinical ethics services. Increasing visibility was identified as a significant challenge within organisations and externally. Although each service had a formal system for maintaining accountability and measuring performance, differences in the type, frequency, and content of reporting impacted service delivery. One of the most salient findings was the complexity inherent in the provision of clinical ethics services, which requires of clinical ethicists a broad and varied skill set and knowledge base. Benchmarks including the average number of consults/ethicist per year and the hospital beds/ethicist ratio are presented.Conclusion: The findings will be of interest to clinical ethicists locally, nationally, and internationally as they provide a preliminary framework from which further benchmarking measures and best practices in clinical ethics can be identified, developed, and evaluated. (shrink)
Moreau sketches here with enthusiasm the large features of Aquinas’s epistemology. He is not, as he makes clear, a Thomist either by training or by avowal. The book is not, then, a specialist’s monograph or dogmatic treatise. It is Moreau’s attempt to hear what Aquinas will say to the great questions. The attempt is largely successful in attending to Aquinas’s remarks, though it does not catch their ambiguities.
Citizens today are increasingly expected to be knowledgeable about and prepared to engage with biomedical knowledge. In this article, I wish to reframe this ‘public understanding of science’ project, and place fresh emphasis on public understandings of research: an engagement with the everyday laboratory practices of biomedicine and its associated ethics, rather than with specific scientific facts. This is not based on an assumption that non-scientists are ‘ignorant’ and are thus unable to ‘appropriately’ use or debate science; rather, it is (...) underpinned by an empirically-grounded observation that some individuals may be unfamiliar with certain specificities of particular modes of research and ethical frameworks, and, as a consequence, have their autonomy compromised when invited to participate in biomedical investigations. Drawing on the perspectives of participants in my own sociological research on the social and ethical dimensions of neuroscience, I argue that public understanding of biomedical research and its ethics should be developed both at the community level and within the research moment itself in order to enhance autonomy and promote more socially robust science. Public bioethics will have to play a key role in such an endeavour, and indeed will contribute in important ways to the opening up of new spaces of symmetrical engagement between bioethicists, scientists and wider publics—and hence to the democratisation of the bioethical enterprise. (shrink)
This monograph presents itself as an account of the various roles played by notions of participation in Aquinas’s Summa contra Gentiles. Lazzaro intends that the study be one of a series which will track these notions through the whole of the Thomist corpus. To judge by his repeated references, Lazzaro seems also to conceive this project as a confirmation and amplification of the accounts already given by Cornelio Fabro. It is not entirely clear what Lazzaro intends to add to Fabro—perhaps (...) further "documentation," perhaps a few nuances of interpretation. (shrink)