Background Informed consent is a requirement for all research. It is not, however, clear how much information is sufficient to make an informed decision about participation in research. Information on an online questionnaire about childhood development was provided through an unfolding electronic participant sheet in three levels of information. Methods 552 participants, who completed the web-based survey, accessed and spent time reading the participant information sheet (PIS) between July 2008 and November 2009. The information behaviour of the participants was investigated. (...) The first level contained less information than might be found on a standard PIS, the second level corresponded to a standard PIS, and the third contained more information than on a standard PIS. The actual time spent on reading the information provided in three incremental levels and the participants' evaluation of the information were calculated. Results 77% of the participants chose to access the first level of information, whereas 12% accessed the first two levels, 6% accessed all three levels of information and 23% participated without accessing information. The most accessed levels of information were those that corresponded to the average reading times. Conclusion The brief information provided in the first level was sufficient for participants to make informed decisions, while a sizeable minority of the participants chose not to access any information at all. This study adds to the debate about how much information is required to make a decision about participation in research and the results may help inform the future development of information sheets by providing data on participants' actual needs when deciding about questionnaire surveys. (shrink)
We use some simple facts about the wtt-degrees of r.e. sets together with a construction to answer some questions concerning the join and meet operators in the r.e. degrees. The construction is that of an r.e. Turing degree a with just one wtt-degree in a such that a is the join of a minimal pair of r.e. degrees. We hope to illustrate the usefulness of studying the stronger reducibility orderings of r.e. sets for providing information about Turing reducibility.
This case note considers the Court of Appeal decision in Royal Bank of Scotland v. Etridge (No. 2) and other appeals  4 All E.R. 705. It concerns the familiar scenario of a wife jointly mortgaging (or providing a guarantee for a mortgage of) the family home in order to secure financial support for a business run by her husband. The House of Lords decision in Barclays Bank v O'Brien  A.C. 180 has given rise to a range of litigation (...) in this area, and the spotlight has now moved from the banks to an examination of the quality of advice given by solicitors. The banks have heeded the warnings in O'Brien and now insist that wives are told to obtain independent legal advice. It will be seen that, following Etridge, if the bank tells the solicitor to give the wife legal advice upon undertaking the transaction, that will be sufficient to protect the bank, notwithstanding that the advice was either inadequate or even not actually given. The onus to ensure that proper advice is given is shifted squarely on to the solicitor. The note concludes that the decision is indicative of the shift of judicial opinion against wives seeking to avoid charges over matrimonial homes and in favour of banks. (shrink)
The 14 essays assembled in this volume, along with their intensive scholarship, create somewhat the impression of a Who's Who of contemporary literary studies of Ralph Waldo Emerson and the American Transcendentalists. All has been brought together by Mott and Burkholder to honor Joel Myerson, with the words of Emerson's famous remark to Walt Whitman, "We greet You at the Mid-point of a Great Career" (p. xi). An authority on Transcendentalism, textual and bibliographical studies, Myerson has written, edited, or co-edited (...) nearly sixty books, including most recently, Emerson's Antislavery Writings (with Len Gougeon, 1995), The Selected Letters of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1997), and the Later Lectures of Ralph Waldo Emerson (with Ronald A. Bosco). The career, like the present book, provides a marvelous contemporary focus on the 19th century American literary renaissance. Anyone writing on Emerson's thought will best view this volume as essential reading. (shrink)
There is a surprising amount of philosophy underlying the way we choose to measure poverty, including in the matter of the seemingly uncomplicated task of specifying an income poverty line. The present essay examines some of these issues of fact, value, and reasoning as they apply to the enterprise of assessing magnitudes of, and trends in, global money-metric poverty.
Contemporary liberal democracy employs a conception of legitimacy according to which political decisions and institutions must be at least in principle justifiable to all citizens. This conception of legitimacy is difficult to satisfy when citizens are deeply divided at the level of fundamental moral, religious, and philosophical commitments. Many have followed the later Rawls in holding that where a reasonable pluralism of such commitments persists, political justification must eschew appeal to any controversial moral, religious, or philosophical premises. In this way, (...) the Rawlsian account of public political justification involves a politics of omission, where citizens are expected to bracket off their most fundamental commitments and seek justifications that draw only from uncontroversial premises. This politics of omission is necessary, Rawls argues, for political stability. But there is good social epistemic evidence for the view that the politics of omission encourages insularity among like-minded groups, and that this insularity in turn generates extremism. So omission is likely to lead to instability, not stability. (shrink)