This study examined the association between employee perceptions of two foci of corporate social responsibility and work attitudes in different countries. Using data collected as part of a multinational research project with a core team in the United States, we found that perceptions of externally focused CSR enactment were positively associated with employee engagement and affective commitment. Perceptions of internally focused CSR enactment were positively associated with affective commitment but not with employee engagement. Analyses across countries revealed more cultural than (...) economic differences. For example, perceptions of internally focused CSR enactment were consistently associated with affective commitment across cultural contexts, indicating that they might serve as a general foundation for building commitment. Perceptions of externally focused CSR were more strongly associated with affective commitment in Anglo than in Confucian and Latin American countries, suggesting a need for country-specific tailoring. Based on these results, we provided recommendations for planning and implementation of CSR. (shrink)
In the past few years, a number of philosophers ; Horgan and Tienson ; Pitt 2004) have maintained the following three theses: there is a distinctive sort of phenomenology characteristic of conscious thought, as opposed to other sorts of conscious mental states; different conscious thoughts have different phenomenologies; and thoughts with the same phenomenology have the same intentional content. The last of these three claims is open to at least two different interpretations. It might mean that the phenomenology of a (...) thought expresses its intentional content, where intentional content is understood as propositional, and propositions are understood as mind-and language-independent abstract entities. And it might mean that the phenomenology of a thought is its intentional content—that is, that the phenomenology of a thought, like the phenomenology of a sensation, constitutes its content. The second sort of view is a kind of psychologism. Psychologistic views hold that one or another sort of thing—numbers, sentences, propositions, etc.—that we can think or know about is in fact a kind of mental thing. Since Frege, psychologism has been in bad repute among analytic philosophers. It is widely held that Frege showed that such views are untenable, since, among other things, they subjectivize what is in fact objective, and, hence, relativize such things as consistency and truth to the peculiarities of human psychology. The purpose of this paper is to explore the consequences of the thesis that intentional mental content is phenomenological and to try to reach a conclusion about whether it yields a tenable view of mind, thought and meaning. I believe the thesis is not so obviously wrong as it will strike many philosophers of mind and language. In fact, it can be defended against the standard objections to psychologism, and it can provide the basis for a novel and interesting account of mentality. (shrink)
When hopelessness and helplessness become recurring themes in teacher education scholarship, this signals a conceptual problem with the question of autonomy in the profession. In this essay, Alice Pitt argues that breakdowns of professional life belong to what is most subjective in the profession. Pitt opens her analysis of this conundrum by examining some earlier formulations of the problem of learning a profession. Next, she explores four orientations to the role of education in modern life and examines an interview with (...) a beginning teacher as a way to think about autonomy in its emotional as well as rational qualities. A reconfigured autonomy suggests that education is more than a site of the failure of the Enlightenment promise to advance reason's dominance in the organization of social life. Education, in its professional, practical, and experiential realms, reveals the dynamic qualities of the limits of reason, according to Pitt. She concludes that a constitutive alterity at the heart of the educational project renders the profession a significant site for ongoing investigation of the human condition and the play of autonomy. (shrink)
A number of philosophers endorse, without argument, the view that there’s something it’s like consciously to think that p, which is distinct from what it’s like consciously to think that q. This thesis, if true, would have important consequences for philosophy of mind and cognitive science. In this paper I offer two arguments for it. The first argument claims it would be impossible introspectively to distinguish conscious thoughts with respect to their content if there weren’t something it’s like to think (...) them. This argument is defended against several objections. The second argument uses what I call “minimal pair” experiences—sentences read without and with understanding—to induce in the reader an experience of the kind I claim exists. Further objects are considered and rebutted. (shrink)
The notion of a "mental representation" is, arguably, in the first instance a theoretical construct of cognitive science. As such, it is a basic concept of the Computational Theory of Mind, according to which cognitive states and processes are constituted by the occurrence, transformation and storage (in the mind/brain) of information-bearing structures (representations) of one kind or another.
People implicitly associate different emotions with different locations in left-right space. Which aspects of emotion do they spatialize, and why? Across many studies people spatialize emotional valence, mapping positive emotions onto their dominant side of space and negative emotions onto their non-dominant side, consistent with theories of metaphorical mental representation. Yet other results suggest a conflicting mapping of emotional intensity, according to which people associate more intense emotions with the right and less intense emotions with the left — regardless of (...) their valence; this pattern has been interpreted as support for a domain-general system for representing magnitudes. To resolve the apparent contradiction between these mappings, we first tested whether people implicitly map either valence or intensity onto left-right space, depending on which dimension of emotion they attend to. When asked to judge emotional valence, participants showed the predicted valence mapping. However, when asked to judge emotional intensity, participants showed no systematic intensity mapping. We then tested an alternative explanation of findings previously interpreted as evidence for an intensity mapping. These results suggest that previous findings may reflect a left-right mapping of spatial magnitude rather than emotion. People implicitly spatialize emotional valence, but, at present, there is no clear evidence for an implicit lateral mapping of emotional intensity. These findings support metaphor theory and challenge the proposal that mental magnitudes are represented by a domain-general metric that extends to the domain of emotion. (shrink)
: What do appeals to case studies accomplish? Consider the dilemma: On the one hand, if the case is selected because it exemplifies the philosophical point, then it is not clear that the historical data hasn't been manipulated to fit the point. On the other hand, if one starts with a case study, it is not clear where to go from there—for it is unreasonable to generalize from one case or even two or three.
Some contemporary philosophers – most notably John Searle and Galen Strawson – have persisted in the Cartesian intuition that consciousness and intentionality are somehow essentially connected. Descartes himself held that the relation between consciousness and intentionality is especially intimate: there can be no unconscious mental states of any kind; and no creature incapable of consciousness is capable of mentality. Descartes’s view is widely acknowledged to have been discredited by Freud, and by contemporary cognitive science. Freud argued that the best explanations (...) for much of human behavior require that we suppose there are unconscious states, such as beliefs and desires, with intentional content. If the explanation of behavior requires us to advert to states with intentional content, then it requires us to advert to unconscious states with intentional content. Moreover, much of the explanatory success of cognitive science depends upon the supposition of “sub-personal” and otherwise unconscious mental representations. Contrary to what Descartes believed, a great deal – perhaps even most – of our intentional mental life goes on unnoticed by us. Anyone who accepts the Freudian thesis, but who maintains that nonetheless there is a substantive sense in which intentionality is impossible without consciousness, is faced with the difficult task of reconciling these seemingly incompatible theses. Both Searle and Strawson allow that intentional states can be unconscious. However, they both attempt to honor the Cartesian intuition by placing restrictions on the conditions under. (shrink)
The arguments of Fodor, Garret, Walker and Parkes [(1980) Against definitions, Cognition, 8, 263-367] are the source of widespread skepticism in cognitive science about lexical semantic structure. Whereas the thesis that lexical items, and the concepts they express, have decompositional structure (i.e. have significant constituents) was at one time "one of those ideas that hardly anybody [in the cognitive sciences] ever considers giving up" (p. 264), most researchers now believe that "[a]ll the evidence suggests that the classical [(decompositional)] view is (...) wrong as a general theory of concepts" [Smith, Medin & Rips (1984) A psychological approach to concepts: comments on Rey, Cognition, 17, 272], and cite Fodor et al. (1980) as "sounding the death knell for decompositional theories" [MacNamara & Miller (1989) Attributes of theories of meaning, Psychological Bulletin, 106, 360]. I argue that the prevailing skepticism is unmotivated by the arguments in Fodor et al. Fodor et al. misrepresent the form, function and scope of the decompositional hypothesis, and the procedures they employ to test for the psychological reality of definitions are flawed. I argue, further, that decompositional explanations of the phenomena they consider are preferable to their primitivist alternatives, and, hence, that there is prima facie reason to accept them as evidence for the existence of decompositional structure. Cognitive scientists would, therefore, do well to revert to their former commitment to the decompositional hypothesis. (shrink)
ailure of substitutivity of coreferential terms, one of the hallmarks of referential opacity, is standardly explained in terms of the presence of an expression (such as a verb of propositional attitude, a modal adverb or quotation marks) with opacity-inducing properties. It is thus assumed that any term in a complex expression for which substitutivity fails will be within the scope of an expression of one of these types, and that where there is an expression of one of these types there (...) will be failure of substitutivity for terms within its scope. I shall discuss a series of examples that have been thought to challenge this explanation by exhibiting failure of substitutivity of coreferential terms for positions not within the scope of any of the standard opacity-inducing expressions. If these examples are genuine, then the usual explanations of opacity are either incomplete – because there are sources of opacity other than those standardly identified, or completely mistaken – because the standardly identified expressions are not causes of opacity. I will argue, however, that the examples only exhibit failure of substitutivity of non-coreferential terms, and, hence, do not present a challenge to standard explanations of opacity. (shrink)
Call a thought whose expression involves the utterance of an indexical an indexical thought . Thus, my thoughts that I’m annoyed, that now is not the right time, that this is not acceptable, are all indexical thoughts. Such thoughts present a prima facie problem for the thesis that thought contents are phenomenally individuated -- i.e., that each distinct thought type has a proprietarily cognitive phenomenology such that its having that phenomenology makes it the thought that it is -- given the (...) assumption that phenomenology is intrinsically determined i.e. (shrink)
While it seems unlikely that any method of guaranteeing human-friendliness on the part of advanced Artificial General Intelligence systems will be possible, this doesn’t mean the only alternatives are throttling AGI development to safeguard humanity, or plunging recklessly into the complete unknown. Without denying the presence of a certain irreducible uncertainty in such matters, it is still sensible to explore ways of biasing the odds in a favorable way, such that newly created AI systems are significantly more likely than not (...) to be Friendly. Several potential methods of effecting such biasing are explored here, with a particular but non-exclusive focus on those that are relevant to open-source AGI projects, and with illustrative examples drawn from the OpenCog open-source AGI project. Issues regarding the relative safety of open versus closed approaches to AGI are discussed and then nine techniques for biasing AGIs in favor of Friendliness are presented: 1. Engineer the capability to acquire integrated ethical knowledge.2. Provide rich ethical interaction and instruction, respecting developmental stages.3. Develop stable, hierarchical goal systems.4. Ensure that the early stages of recursive self-improvement occur relatively slowly and with rich human involvement.5. Tightly link AGI with the Global Brain.6. Foster deep, consensus-building interactions between divergent viewpoints.7. Create a mutually supportive community of AGIs.8. Encourage measured co-advancement of AGI software and AGI ethics theory.9. Develop advanced AGI sooner not later. In conclusion, and related to the final point, we advise the serious co-evolution of functional AGI systems and AGI-related ethical theory as soon as possible, before we have so much technical infrastructure that parties relatively unconcerned with ethics are able to rush ahead with brute force approaches to AGI development. (shrink)
Since the publication of Carl Hempel and Paul Oppenheim's ground-breaking work "Studies in the Logic of Explanation," the theory of explanation has remained a major topic in the philosophy of science. This valuable collection provides readers with the opportunity to study some of the classic essays on the theory of explanation along with the best examples of the most recent work being done on the topic. In addition to the original Hempel and Oppenheim paper, the volume includes Scriven's critical reaction (...) to it, Wilfrid Sellars's discussion of the problem of theoretical explanation, and pieces by Salmon, Railton, van Fraassen, Friedman, Kitcher, and Achinstein in which they demonstrate the vitality of the subject by extending the scope of the inquiry. (shrink)
Corruption in business is as old as business itself. Corruption exists to some extent in all cultures, under all market systems and in all countries. The objectives of this paper are not to stand in judgement or to consider moral issues. This article considers the findings of a study concerning managerial attitudes towards corruption in business. The methodology involves a number of scenarios which could be construed as being deviant or dishonest. These are presented to respondents. Respondents are then asked (...) questions regarding each situation. The findings were interesting. While the sample in general condemned corruption and corruptive practices, the perceived participation by the peer group was higher than one would have expected. The findings of a more comprehensive study of a similar nature should be meaningful to corporate policy in this regard, not only in respect of corruption, but also when decisions have to be made regarding the receipt of gifts. (shrink)
Externalism is the view that the intentional content of a mental state supervenes on its relations to objects in the extramental world. Nativism is the view that some of the innate states of the mind/brain have intentional content.I consider both “causal” and “nomic” versions of externalism, and argue that both are incompatible with nativism. I consider likely candidates for a compatibilist position – a nativism of “narrow” representational states, and a nativism of the contentless formal “vehicles” of representational states. I (...) argue that “narrow nativism” is either too implausible to appeal to the nativist – because it entails that innate representational states are lost as the mind becomes more experienced, or too costly to appeal to the externalist – because a reasonable version of it requires the analytic-synthetic distinction.Finally, I argue that “syntactic nativism” is indistinguishable from classical anti-nativist empiricism, given the latter’s broad tolerance for innate implementation of psychological principles and mechanisms. (shrink)
The question is how do Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEMs) give us access to the nano world? The images these instruments produce, I argue, do not allow us to see atoms in the same way that we see trees. To the extent that SEMs and STMs allow us to see the occupants of the nano world it is by way of metaphorical extension of the concept of “seeing”. The more general claim is that changes in scientific instrumentation effect changes in the (...) concepts central to our understanding of scientific results. (shrink)
have established that psychological content can be socially determined. They are taken to show that, contrary to the traditional Cartesian conception, the contents of an individual’s thoughts are not always determined by his intrinsic properties alone, but can depend on the practices of the linguistic community of which he is a member. Specifically, Burge claims that his thought experiments show that the socially determined meanings of the words a linguistically competent individual uses to express his thoughts about himself, his fellows (...) and his physical environment can determine the contents of those thoughts, and, hence, that those contents themselves can be socially determined. In this paper I argue that Burge’s anti-individualist thesis is not supported by his thought experiments. The cases Burge presents are meant to elicit intuitions which, in combination with a plausible general principle about belief ascription, provide a strong motivation for abandoning the individualist conception of mind. The intuitions concern what it is natural to say about what the individuals described in the thought experiments believe, and the general principle is that all things equal belief–ascriptions it is natural to make are literally true. The intuitions are supposed to override any sense that the ceteris paribus clause of the principle is sprung in Burge’s cases because of the conceptual idiosyncracies of his subjects: they believe what they say in spite of their deviance from the communal norms governing the usage of their words. (shrink)
Reductive representationalism is the view that the qualitative properties associated with conscious experience are properties of the objects of the experience, and not of the experience itself. A prima facie problem for this view arises from dreams and hallucinations, in which qualitative properties are experienced but not instantiated in external objects of perception. I argue that representationalist attempts to solve it by appeal to actually uninstantiated properties are guilty of an absurdity akin to that which Ryle accused Descartes of in (...) the latter’s doctrine of immaterial substance. (shrink)
There is a growing chorus of voices in the scientific community calling for greater openness in the sharing of raw data that lead to a publication. In this commentary, we discuss the merits of sharing, common concerns that are raised, and practical issues that arise in developing a sharing policy. We suggest that the cognitive science community discuss the topic and establish a data-sharing policy.
It is argued that the question “Can we trust technology?” is unanswerable because it is open-ended. Only questions about specific issues that can have specific answers should be entertained. It is further argued that the reason the question cannot be answered is that there is no such thing as Technology simpliciter. Fundamentally, the question comes down to trusting people and even then, the question has to be specific about trusting a person to do this or that.
Arguments about the discursive shaping of our inner lives explain the shaping powers of normalising forces on individual and collective social action, but, I argue here, do not adequately account for the actions of those who choose to follow alternative ways of being. Meta- Reality brings into this picture those aspects of being that are ‘beyond language’, and theorises human consciousness as stratified. I argue that it provides a fuller theoretical explanation for the motivations of five contemporary British visual artists. (...) Drawing on a discourse analysis, I explore why these artists go against the current stream of consumerist and work norms in order to find the time to make art. I summarise and compare Rose’s theory of a multiple interior self formed through our active participation in specific social processes with Bhaskar’s theory of individual uniqueness at a level of consciousness that also connects us to all others. (shrink)
This paper examines the issue of ethics policy in organizations. While the actions of top management may be the single most important factor in fostering corporate behaviour of a high ethical standard, there should be policy where policy is needed. The perceptions of three managerial groups — top- marketing- and purchasing managers — are compared regarding firstly, whether they see a need for policy on a range of ethically contentious issues, and secondly whether they believe there is policy covering these (...) issues in their own organizations. No significant differences between the three groups of managers were found, either with regard to their perceptions of needs for policy, or as far as the existence thereof is concerned. However, an overall comparison of need for policy and the existence of policy showed a significant difference on the scenarios presented to respondents. Furthermore, the study identifies grey areas of ethics in business where managers believe policy is needed, but is not perceived to exist. The use of an ethics policy matrix in organizations is suggested as a practcial tool for the examination of ethically contentious issues. (shrink)
The thesis that conceptual content is experiential faces a prima facie objection. Phenomenology is not in general compositional. For example, the experienced color of a thing will change depending on its context. If conceptual phenomenology is also subject to context effects, then thought contents will not be compositional. However, the compositionality of thought content is, arguably, explanatorily indispensable. This paper considers several different conceptions of compositionality, but in the end maintains there is no introspective evidence for conceptual context effects.
Summary A sufficient condition for a revolution in physics is a change in the concept of cause. To demonstrate this, we examine three developments in physical theory. After informally characterizing a theory in terms of an heuristic and a set of equations, we show how tensions between these two dimensions lead to the development of alternative theoretical accounts. In each case the crucial move results in a refinement of our account of cause. All these refinements taken together result in the (...) emergence of a new conceptual framework in which âcausationâ is evolving in a manner unrelated to the common sense understanding of the concept. (shrink)