This study examines the direct impact of three dimensions of the institutional environment on managerial attitudes toward the natural environment and the direct influence of the latter on the environmental sustainability orientation (ESO) of small firms. We contend that when the institutional environment is perceived by owner–managers as supportive of sound natural environment management practices, they are more likely to develop a positive attitude toward natural environment issues and concerns. Such owner–manager attitudes are likely to (...) lead to a positive and proactive orientation of their firms toward environmental sustainability. The study uses survey data from 166 small manufacturing firms located in three Philippine cities. First, the study develops and tests the measurement models to examine the validity of the constructs representing the firm’s institutional environment, managerial attitudes toward the natural environment and the ESO of firms. Second, the study develops and tests the structural models examining the institutional environment–managerial attitudes–ESO linkages. Multi-sample invariance structural model analysis shows the mediating role of managerial attitudes in the institutional environment–ESO nexus. The findings show that ESO is a construct comprising three dimensions: knowledge of environmental issues, sustainable practices and commitment toward environmental sustainability. The cognitive, regulatory and normative elements of the institutional environment are strongly linked to positive managerial attitudes toward environmental sustainability, which in turn, positively influences the firm’s overall ESO. Managerial attitudes play a mediating role in the institutional environment–ESO linkages. The managerial, practical, research and policy implications of the research findings are discussed. (shrink)
Traditional views of rationality posit general-purpose decision mechanisms based on logic or optimization. The study of ecological rationality focuses on uncovering the “adaptive toolbox” of domain-specific simple heuristics that real, computationally bounded minds employ, and explaining how these heuristics produce accurate decisions by exploiting the structures of information in the environments in which they are applied. Knowing when and how people use particular heuristics can facilitate the shaping of environments to engender better decisions.
In this work Tim Ingold provides a persuasive new approach to the theory behind our perception of the world around us. The core of the argument is that where we refer to cultural variation we should be instead be talking about variation in skill. Neither genetically innate or culturally acquired, skills are incorporated into the human organism through practice and training in an environment.They are as much biological as cultural.
Stakeholder theory is often unable to distinguish those individuals and groups that are stakeholders from those that are not. This problem of stakeholder identity has recently been addressed by linking stakeholder theory to a Rawlsian principle of fairness. To illustrate, the question of stakeholder status for the non-human environment is discussed. This essay criticizes a past attempt to ascribe stakeholder status to the non-human environment, which utilized a broad definition of the term "stakeholder." This paper then demonstrates how, (...) despite the denial of stakeholder status, the environment is nonetheless accounted for on a fairness-based approach through legitimate organizational stakeholders. In addition, since stakeholder theory has never claimed to be a comprehensive ethical scheme, it is argued that sound reasons might exist for managers to consider their organization's impact on the environment that are not stakeholder-related. (shrink)
The concept of an ecological niche (econiche) has been used in a variety of ways, some of which are incompatible with a relational or functional interpretation of the term. This essay seeks to standardize usage by limiting the concept to functional relations between organisms and their surroundings, and to revise the concept to include epistemic relations. For most organisms, epistemics are a vital aspect of their functional relationships to their surroundings and, hence, a major determinant of their econiche. Rejecting the (...) traditional dualism of organism and environment, an econiche is defined as the reciprocal (dual) of a functionally specified class of organisms (FSTU). From this perspective, an econiche necessarily implies a certain type of organism, and a class of functionally similar organisms implies a special econiche.The econiche concept is also discussed in relation to other ecological terms that reflect the distributional patterns of organisms, such as habitat, and the concept of an empty niche is criticized. (shrink)
The concept of the environment appears to be indispensably involved in adaptive explanation. Quite what its role is, however, is a matter of some dispute. The environment is customarily viewed as the dual of the organism; a wholly external, discrete, autonomous cause of evolution. On this view, the external environment is the principal cause of the adaptedness of form, and the determinant of what it is to be an adaptation. I argue that this conception of the (...) class='Hi'>environment neither adequately explains nor individuates evolutionary adaptations. Instead, adaptation, properly construed, is an evolutionary response to affordances. The environment, traditionally construed, underdetermines an organism’s affordances. Instead, I argue that the environment takes its place in evolutionary models not as a discrete causal entity, but as an abstraction. (shrink)
With the increasing popularity of social media, a new ethics debate has arisen over marketing and technology in the current digital era. People are using online communities but they have concern about information credibility through word of mouth in these platforms. Social media is becoming increasingly influential in shaping individuals’ decision-making as more and better quality information about products is made available. In this research, a social word-of-mouth model proposes using a survey to test the model in a popular travel (...) community. The model highlights the role of social media and social support in social networking sites, identifying increasing credibility and information usefulness resulting in an ethical environment to adopt word of mouth. The theoretical and practical implications of the study are both detailed. (shrink)
Aesthetics and the Environment presents fresh and fascinating insights into our interpretation of the environment. Traditional aesthetics is often associated with the appreciation of art, but Allen Carlson shows how much of our aesthetic experience does not encompass art but nature--in our response to sunsets, mountains or horizons or more mundane surroundings, like gardens or the view from our window. Carlson argues that knowledge of what it is we are appreciating is essential to having an appropriate aesthetic experience (...) and that a scientific understanding of nature can enhance our appreciation of it, rather than denigrate it. (shrink)
Environmental aesthetics is an emerging discipline that explores the meaning and influence of environmental perception and experience on human life. Arguing for the idea that environment is not merely a setting for people but is fully integrated and continuous with us, The Aesthetics of Environment explores the aesthetic dimensions of the human-environmental continuum in both theoretical terms and concrete situations. From outer space to the museum, from architecture to landscape, from city to countryside to wilderness, this book discovers (...) in the aesthetic perception of environment the reciprocity that constitutes both person and place. (shrink)
At a time when fossil fuel burning, nationalism, ethnic and religious intolerance, and other retrograde steps are being promoted, the prospects for world peace and environmental systems stability may appear dim. Exactly because of this is it the more important to continue to examine the sources of conflict. A major obstacle to general progress is the currently dominant economic practice and theory, which is here called the economy-as-usual, or economics-as-usual, as appropriate. A special obstacle to constructive change is the language (...) in which economic matters are usually discussed. This language is narrow, conservative, technical and often obscure. The rapid changes in the environment are largely kept in a separate compartment. If, however, the partition is removed, economics-as-usual, with its dependence on growth and its widening inequality, is seen to be unsustainable. Radical economic change, for better or worse, is to be expected. Such change is here called economy change. The change could be for the better if it involved an expansion of the concept of economics itself, along the lines of oikonomia, a modern revival of a classical Greek term for management or household. In such an expanded view, not everything of economic value can be measured. It is argued that economics-as-usual is the source of much strife. Some features are indicated of a less conflictual economy—more just, cooperative and peaceful. These features include a dignified life available to all people as of right, the word ‘wealth’ being reconnected with weal, well and well-being, and ‘work’ being understood as including all useful activity. (shrink)
When constructing environmental policies in democratic regimes, there is a need for a theory that can be used not only by academics but also by politicians and activists. So why has the major part of environmental ethics failed to penetrate environmental policy and serve as its rationale? Obviously, there is a gap between the questions that environmental philosophers discuss and the issues that motivate environmental activists. Avner de‐Shalit attempts to bridge this gap by combining tools of political philosophy with questions (...) of environmental ethics and environmental politics. He defends a radical position in relation to both environmental protection and social policies, in order to put forward a political theory, which is not only philosophically sound, but also relevant to the practice of environmental activism. The author argues that several directions in environmental ethics can be at odds with the contemporary political debates surrounding environmental politics. He then goes on to examine the environmental scope of liberalism, communitarianism, participatory democracy, and socialism, and concludes that while elements of liberalism and communitarianism may support environmental protection, it is participatory democracy and a modified version of socialism that are crucial for protecting the environment. (shrink)
In this paper, I give an account of how our hominin ancestors evolved a conscious ability I call scenario visualization that enabled them to manufacture novel tools so as to survive and flourish in the ever-changing and complex environments in which they lived. I first present the ideas and arguments put forward by evolutionary psychologists that the mind evolved certain mental capacities as adaptive responses to environmental pressures. Specifically, Steven Mithen thinks that the mind has evolved cognitive fluidity, viz., an (...) ability to exchange information flexibly between and among mental modules. Showing the deficiency in Mithen’s view, I then argue that the flexible exchange of information between and among modules together with scenario visualization is what explains the ability to construct the novel tools needed to survive and flourish in the environments in which our hominin ancestors resided. Finally, I trace the development of the multi-purposed javelin, from its meager beginnings as a stick, in order to illustrate scenario visualization in novel tool manufacturing. (shrink)
A rich literature in public health has demonstrated that health is strongly influenced by a host of environmental factors that can vary according to social, economic, geographic, cultural or physical contexts. Bioethicists should, we argue, recognize this and – where appropriate – work to integrate environmental concerns into their field of study and their ethical deliberations. In this article, we present an argument grounded in scientific research at the molecular level that will be familiar to – and so hopefully more (...) persuasive for – the biomedically-inclined in the bioethics community. Specifically, we argue that the relatively new field of molecular epigenetics provides novel information that should serve as additional justification for expanding the scope of bioethics to include environmental and public health concerns. We begin by presenting two distinct visions of bioethics: the individualistic and rights-oriented and the communitarian and responsibility-oriented. We follow with a description of biochemical characteristics distinguishing epigenetics from genetics, in order to emphasize the very close relationship that exists between the environment and gene expression. This then leads to a discussion of the importance of the environment in determining individual and population health, which, we argue, should shift bioethics towards a Potterian view that promotes a communitarian-based sense of responsibility for the environment, in order to fully account for justice considerations and improve public health. (shrink)
This article offers a thorough and critical reading of Husserl’s Thing and Space. This reading is principally motivated by the effort to methodologically design a phenomenological–topological approach to the research of lived sonic environments. In this book, Husserl lays foundations of phenomenological topology by understanding perceptions as places and defining, consequently, the space as a system of places. The critical reading starts with pointing out the ambiguity of location in Thing and Space, which consists mainly in the insufficient implementation of (...) the distinction between the location and the localization. Further investigations then reveal the roots of this ambiguity in both the preference of visual perception and the omission of subjective aspects of kinesthesia. The article critically examines Husserl’s notion of the appended localization that expresses the marginalization of acoustic experience. In conclusion, the article utilizes the critical findings to formulate the project of a place-based, medium-centered, and multi-sensory approach to sonic environments. (shrink)
Virtue ethics is now widely recognized as an alternative to Kantian and consequentialist ethical theories. However, moral philosophers have been slow to bring virtue ethics to bear on topics in applied ethics. Moreover, environmental virtue ethics is an underdeveloped area of environmental ethics. Although environmental ethicists often employ virtue-oriented evaluation and appeal to role models for guidance, environmental ethics has not been well informed by contemporary work on virtue ethics. With _Character and Environment_, Ronald Sandler remedies each of these deficiencies (...) by bringing together contemporary work on virtue ethics with contemporary work on environmental ethics. He demonstrates the many ways that any ethic of character can and should be informed by environmental considerations. He also develops a pluralistic virtue-oriented environmental ethic that accommodates the richness and complexity of our relationship with the natural environment and provides effective and nuanced guidance on environmental issues. These projects have implications not only for environmental ethics and virtue ethics but also for moral philosophy more broadly. Ethical theories must be assessed on their theoretical and practical adequacy with respect to all aspects of the human ethical situation: personal, interpersonal, and environmental. To the extent that virtue-oriented ethical theory in general, and Sandler's version of it in particular, provides a superior environmental ethic to other ethical theories, it is to be preferred not just as an environmental ethic but also as an ethical theory. _Character and Environment_ will engage any reader with an interest in environmental ethics, virtue ethics, or moral philosophy. (shrink)
Context: Society is faced with “wicked” problems of environmental sustainability, which are inherently multiperspectival, and there is a need for explicitly constructivist and perspectivist theories to address them. Problem: However, different constructivist theories construe the environment in different ways. The aim of this paper is to clarify the conceptions of environment in constructivist approaches, and thereby to assist the sciences of complex systems and complex environmental problems. Method: We describe the terms used for “the environment” in von (...) Uexküll, Maturana & Varela, and Luhmann, and analyse how their conceptions of environment are connected to differences of perspective and observation. Results: We show the need to distinguish between inside and outside perspectives on the environment, and identify two very different and complementary logics of observation, the logic of distinction and the logic of representation, in the three constructivist theories. Implications: Luhmann’s theory of social systems can be a helpful perspective on the wicked environmental problems of society if we consider carefully the theory’s own blind spots: that it confines itself to systems of communication, and that it is based fully on the conception of observation as indication by means of distinction. (shrink)
This paper addresses problems related to transferring market concepts to non-market domains. More specifically it is about fallacies following from the use of the commodity concept in environmental valuation studies. First of all, the standard practice tends to misconstrue the ethical aspects related to environmental choices by forcing them into becoming ordinary trade-off problems. Second, the commodity perspective ignores important technical interdependencies within the environment and the relational character of environmental goods. These are all properties that have made many (...) such goods escape the commoditisation pressure of markets in the first place. Further, it is shown that these interdependencies are the source of some of the ethical dilemmas observed. Finally, inherent characteristics of the environment tend to make the concept of the margin, so indispensable to economic calculus, either difficult or irrelevant to define. The commodity 'fiction' twists the perception of the environment from systems preservation to items use or transformation. This is a problem of increased importance as we approach potential systems perturbations. (shrink)
I: Environmental aesthetics -- A phenomenological aesthetics of environment -- Aesthetic dimensions of environmental design -- Down the garden path -- The wilderness city : a study of metaphorical experience -- Aesthetics of the coastal environment -- The world from the water -- Is there life in virtual space? -- Is greasy lake a place? -- Embodied music -- II: Social aesthetics -- The idea of a cultural aesthetic -- The social evaluation of art -- Subsidization of art (...) as social policy -- Morality and the artist : toward an ethics of art -- Getting along beautifully : ideas for a social aesthetics. (shrink)
What is the environment, and how does it figure in an ethical life? This book is an introduction to the philosophical issues involved in this important question, focussing primarily on ethics but also encompassing questions in aesthetics and political philosophy. Topics discussed include the environment as an ethical question, human morality, meta-ethics, normative ethics, humans and other animals, the value of nature, and nature's future. The discussion is accessible and richly illustrated with examples. The book will be valuable (...) for students taking courses in environmental philosophy, and also for a wider audience in courses in ethics, practical ethics, and environmental studies. It will also appeal to general readers who want a reliable and sophisticated introduction to the field. (shrink)
As biological and biomedical research increasingly reference the environmental context of the biological entities under study, the need for formalisation and standardisation of environment descriptors is growing. The Environment Ontology (ENVO) is a community-led, open project which seeks to provide an ontology for specifying a wide range of environments relevant to multiple life science disciplines and, through an open participation model, to accommodate the terminological requirements of all those needing to annotate data using ontology classes. This paper summarises (...) ENVO’s motivation, content, structure, adoption, and governance approach. (shrink)
Jakob von Uexküll's theories of life -- Biography and historical background -- Nature's conformity with plan -- Umweltforschung -- Biosemiotics -- Concluding remarks -- Marking a path into the environments of animals -- The essential approach to the organism -- Heidegger and the biologists -- Paths to the world -- Disruptive behavior : Heidegger and the captivated animal -- The worldless stone -- The poor animal -- For example, three bees and a lark -- Animal morphology -- A shocking wealth (...) -- A fine line in the rupture of time -- An affected body -- The theme of the animal melody : Merleau-Ponty and the umwelt -- The structure of behavior -- A pure wake, a quiet force -- A leaf of being -- Interanimality -- The-animal-stalks-at-five-oclock : Deleuze's affection for Uexküll -- Problematic organisms -- Uexküll's ethology of affects -- The body without organs, the embryonic egg, and prebiotic soup -- Nature's refrain sung across milieus and territories -- The animal stalks. (shrink)
The purpose of this article is to investigate human spatiality and perception in general, with the experience of adventure sports as its background. These activities highlight especially our strong relationship with the world when we consider the specific way in which the environment participates in the development of human potential. We first analyse the notions of risk and instability as important elements in adventure sports. Then we explore the notion of experience and spatiality, considering the way in which we (...) establish our relationship with the world. The theoretical background is found in the phenomenology of Merleau-Ponty and Bachelard’s phenomenology of imagination to investigate perspectives of space among adventurers. We hold that more than a different range of corporeal techniques, adventure sports can teach us a way of interrogating and looking at the world. They require a peculiar sensibility that allows our body to experience the environment in favour of a corporeal wisdom. Alternative sports indicate the possibility that we have to build up different ways of inhabiting the world and comprehending it. (shrink)
How do we understand the agency and significance of material forces and their interface with human bodies? What does it mean to be human in these times, with bodies that are inextricably interconnected with our physical world? Bodily Natures considers these questions by grappling with powerful and pervasive material forces and their increasingly harmful effects on the human body. Drawing on feminist theory, environmental studies, and the sciences, Stacy Alaimo focuses on trans-corporeality, or movement across bodies and nature, which has (...) profoundly altered our sense of self. By looking at a broad range of creative and philosophical writings, Alaimo illuminates how science, politics, and culture collide, while considering the closeness of the human body to the environment. (shrink)
Food, Animals, and the Environment: An Ethical Approach examines some of the main impacts that agriculture has on humans, nonhumans, and the environment, as well as some of the main questions that these impacts raise for the ethics of food production, consumption, and activism. Agriculture is having a lasting effect on this planet. Some forms of agriculture are especially harmful. For example, industrial animal agriculture kills 100+ billion animals per year; consumes vast amounts of land, water, and energy; (...) and produces vast amounts of waste, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. Other forms, such as local, organic, and plant-based food, have many benefits, but they also have many costs, especially at scale. These impacts raise difficult ethical questions. What do we owe animals, plants, species, and ecosystems? What do we owe people in other nations and future generations? What are the ethics of risk, uncertainty, and collective harm? What is the meaning and value of natural food in a world reshaped by human activity? What are the ethics of supporting harmful industries when less harmful alternatives are available? What are the ethics of resisting harmful industries through activism, advocacy, and philanthropy? The discussion ranges over cutting-edge topics such as effective altruism, abolition and regulation, revolution and reform, individual and structural change, single-issue and multi-issue activism, and legal and illegal activism. This unique and accessible text is ideal for teachers, students, and anyone else interested in serious examination of one of the most complex and important moral problems of our time. (shrink)
The survival enhancing propensity (SEP) account has a crucial role to play in the analysis of proper function. However, a central feature of the account, its specification of the proper environment to which functions are relativized, is seriously underdeveloped. In this paper, I argue that existent accounts of proper environment fail because they either allow too many or too few characters to count as proper functions. While SEP accounts retain their promise, they are unworkable because of their inability (...) to specify this important feature. However, I suggest that this problem can be overcome by the application of a new strategy for specifying proper environment that is grounded in the operation of natural selection and I conclude by offering a first approximation of such an account. (shrink)
Environment and Philosophy provides an accessible introduction to the radical challenges that environmentalism pose to concepts that have become almost second nature in the modern world. Written in an accessible way for those without a background in philosophy, this text examines ways of thinking about ourselves, nature and our relationship with nature.
Enactivism and ecological psychology converge on the relevance of the environment in understanding perception and action. On both views, perceiving organisms are not merely passive receivers of environmental stimuli, but rather form a dynamic relationship with their environments in such a way that shapes how they interact with the world. In this paper, I suggest that while enactivism and ecological psychology enjoy a shared specification of the environment as the cognitive domain, on both accounts, the structure of the (...)environment, itself, is unspecified beyond that of contingent relations with the species-typical sensorimotor capacities of perceiving organisms. This lack of specification creates a considerable gap in theory regarding the organization of organisms as coupled with their environments. I argue that this gap can be filled by drawing from resources in developmental systems theory, namely, specifying the environmental state-space as a developmental niche that shapes and is shaped by individual organisms over developmental and, on a population scale, evolutionary time. Defining the environment as an organism’s developmental niche makes it clearer how and why certain contingencies have arisen, in turn, strengthening a joint appeal to both enactivism and ecological psychology as theories asserting complementarity between organisms and their environments. (shrink)
This is the first book-length treatment of the relationship between citizenship and the environment. Andrew Dobson argues that ecological citizenship cannot be fully articulated in terms of the two great traditions of citizenship - liberal and civic republican - with which we have been bequeathed. He develops an original theory of citizenship, which he calls 'post-cosmopolitan', and argues that ecological citizenship is an example and an inflection of it. Ecological citizenship focuses on duties as well as rights, and these (...) duties are owed non-reciprocally, by those individuals and communities who occupy unsustainable amounts of ecological space, to those who occupy too little. (shrink)
Unique in its collation of major theorists rarely considered together, Critical Environments incorporates detailed discussions of the work of Richard Rorty, Walter Benn Michaels, Stanley Cavell, Humberto Maturana, Francisco Varela, Niklas ...
Background: To evaluate the effectiveness of a multifaceted intervention in improving emergency department (ED) patient privacy and satisfaction in the crowded ED setting. Methods: A pre- and post-intervention study was conducted. A multifaceted intervention was implemented in a university-affiliated hospital ED. The intervention developed strategies to improve ED patient privacy and satisfaction, including redesigning the ED environment, process management, access control, and staff education and training, and encouraging ethics consultation. The effectiveness of the intervention was evaluated using patient surveys. (...) Eligibility data were collected after the intervention and compared to data collected before the intervention. Differences in patient satisfaction and patient perception of privacy were adjusted for predefined covariates using multivariable ordinal logistic regression. Results: Structured questionnaires were collected with 313 ED patients before the intervention and 341 ED patients after the intervention. There were no important covariate differences, except for treatment area, between the two groups. Significant improvements were observed in patient perception of "personal information overheard by others", being "seen by irrelevant persons", having "unintentionally heard inappropriate conversations from healthcare providers", and experiencing "providers' respect for my privacy". There was significant improvement in patient overall perception of privacy and satisfaction. There were statistically significant correlations between the intervention and patient overall perception of privacy and satisfaction on multivariable analysis. Conclusions: Significant improvements were achieved with an intervention. Patients perceived significantly more privacy and satisfaction in ED care after the intervention. We believe that these improvements were the result of major philosophical, administrative, and operational changes aimed at respecting both patient privacy and satisfaction. (shrink)
This book is about the extent, origins and causes of the environmental crisis. Dr Northcott argues that Christianity has lost the biblical awareness of the inter-connectedness of all life. He shows how Christian theologians and believers might recover a more ecologically friendly belief system and life style. The author provides an important corrective to secular approaches to environmental ethics, including utilitarian individualism, animal rights theories and deep ecology. He contends that neither the stewardship tradition, nor the panentheist or process ecological (...) theologies have successfully mobilised the Christian tradition. He demonstrates that the Hebrew Bible contains an ecological message which is close to the traditions of many primal and indigenous peoples and which provides an important corrective to instrumental attitudes to nature in much modern philosophy and Christian ethics. (shrink)
This paper examines some of the methods animals and humans have of adapting their environment. Because there are limits on how many different tasks a creature can be designed to do well in, creatures with the capacity to redesign their environments have an adaptive advantage over those who can only passively adapt to existing environmental structures. To clarify environmental redesign I rely on the formal notion of a task environment as a directed graph where the nodes are states (...) and the links are actions. One natural form of redesign is to change the topology of this graph structure so as to increase the likelihood of task success or to reduce its expected cost, measured in physical terms. This may be done by eliminating initial states hence eliminating choice points; by changing the action repertoire; by changing the consequence function; and lastly, by adding choice points. Another major method for adapting the environment is to change its cognitive congeniality. Such changes leave the state space formally intact but reduce the number and cost of mental operations needed for task success; they reliably increase the speed, accuracy or robustness of performance. The last section of the paper describes several of these epistemic or complementary actions found in human performance. (shrink)
Multisensory Environment and Sensory Deprivation in the Treatment of Reception Defects This article deals with two types of alternative therapy and treatment methods. They are considered to be used in media education, in the treatment of reception defects, such as abuse, narcosis, neurosis, frustration, fetishism and superimposition. Purpose of this article is to summarize and discuss not only these media reality reception defects, but also to object them in two ways - multisensory environment within special pedagogic treatment, sensory (...) deprivation within alternative psychiatric therapy. Methodology in this study is to consider them as using media in the way of organic reception and therefore included in media anthropology, education and ethics. Within media reality a system reception feedback is needed, therefore the method "anything goes" for this use is explained. The aim of this article is to bind alternative media based methods with the research of reception of the media reality and the outstanding media anthropological issues: therapy, education, ethics, philosophy, etc. The scientific aim not only of this study, but also of author's whole work is to sustain the whole - media anthropological view - by using partial methods for media reality analysis and proving its relevance in disputing other theories being enclosed within media discourse. Also the ethics - code of dealing with technological extensions of human competence - the media - is a part of the organic reception. As the conclusion a need of such kind of research, education and treatment is objected and the examples of author's effort are explained. There is strongly recommended to create and use other media anthropology based equipment: Hitchhiker's Guide to Media Reality, A Chronicle of Abused media, blogs, a textbook, etc. (shrink)
The work of seventeenth-century polymath Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz has proved inspirational to philosophers and scientists alike. In this thought-provoking book, Pauline Phemister explores the ecological potential of Leibniz’s dynamic, pluralist, panpsychist, metaphysical system. She argues that Leibniz’s philosophy has a renewed relevance in the twenty-first century, particularly in relation to the environmental change and crises that threaten human and non-human life on earth. Drawing on Leibniz’s theory of soul-like, interconnected metaphysical entities he termed 'monads', Phemister explains how an individual’s true (...) good is inextricably linked to the good of all. Phemister also finds in Leibniz’s works the rudiments of a theory of empathy and strategies for strengthening human feelings of compassion towards all living things. Leibniz and the Environment is essential reading for historians of philosophy and environmental philosophers, and will also be of interest to anyone seeking a metaphysical perspective from which to pursue environmental action and policy. (shrink)
Health policy frameworks usually construe environmental protection and human health as harmonious values. Policies that protect the environment, such as pollution control and pesticide regulation, also benefit human health. In recent years, however, it has become apparent that promoting human health sometimes undermines environmental protection. Some actions, policies, or technologies that reduce human morbidity, mortality, and disease can have detrimental effects on the environment. Since human health and environmental protection are sometimes at odds, political leaders, citizens, and government (...) officials need a way to mediate and resolve conflicts between these values. Unfortunately, few approaches to applied bioethics have the conceptual tools to do accomplish this task. Theories of health care ethics have little to say about the environment, and theories of environmental ethics don’t say much about human health. In this essay, I defend an approach to ethical decision-making that gives policy-makers some tools for balancing promotion of human health and protection of the environment. (shrink)
The word ‘environment’ has a history. Before the mid-nineteenth century, the idea of a singular, abstract entity—the organism—interacting with another singular, abstract entity—the environment—was virtually unknown. In this paper I trace how the idea of a plurality of external conditions or circumstances was replaced by the idea of a singular environment. The central figure behind this shift, at least in Anglo-American intellectual life, was the philosopher Herbert Spencer. I examine Spencer’s work from 1840 to 1855, demonstrating that (...) he was exposed to a variety of discussions of the ‘force of circumstances’ in this period, and was decisively influenced by the ideas of Auguste Comte in the years preceding the publication of Principles of psychology (1855). It is this latter work that popularized the word ‘environment’ and the corresponding idea of organism–environment interaction—an idea with important metaphysical and methodological implications. Spencer introduced into the English-speaking world one of our most enduring dichotomies: organism and environment. (shrink)
Despite the burgeoning interest in new and more complex accounts of the organism-environment dyad by biologists and philosophers, little attention has been paid in the resulting discussions to the history of these ideas and to their deployment in disciplines outside biology—especially in the social sciences. Even in biology and philosophy, there is a lack of detailed conceptual models of the organism-environment relationship. This volume is designed to fill these lacunae by providing the first multidisciplinary discussion of the topic (...) of organism-environment interaction. It brings together scholars from history, philosophy, psychology, anthropology, medicine, and biology to discuss the common focus of their work: entangled life, or the complex interaction of organisms and environments. (shrink)
Given free information and unlimited processing power, should decision algorithms use as much information as possible? A formal model of the decision-making environment is developed to address this question and provide conditions under which informationally frugal algorithms, without any information or processing costs whatsoever, are optimal. One cause of compression that allows optimal algorithms to rationally ignore information is inverse movement of payoffs and probabilities (e.g., high payoffs occur with low probably and low payoffs occur with high probability). If (...) inversely related payoffs and probabilities cancel out, then predictors that correlate with payoffs and consequently condition the probabilities associated with different payoffs will drop out of the expected-payoff objective function, severing the link between information and optimal action rules. Stochastic payoff processes in which rational ignoring occurs are referred to as compressed environments, because optimal action depends on a reduced-dimension subset of the environmental parameters. This paper considers benefits and limitations of economic models versus other methods for studying links between environmental structure and the real-world success of simple decision procedures. Different methods converge on the normative proposition of ecological rationality, as opposed to axiomatic rationality based on informational efficiency and internal consistency axioms, as a superior framework for comparing the effectiveness of decision strategies and prescribing decision algorithms in application. (shrink)
One of the key questions to have exercised green political theorists in recent years concerns the relationship of the environment 'agenda' and democracy. Both environmentalists and democrats have a tendency to think of each other as natural bedfellows but in fact there is little theoretical or practical reason why they should be. Indeed some theorists have argued that the environmental movement has grown from fundamentally authoritarian roots and it is arguable that the only really effective way of implementing environmental (...) politics is by imposing them in an authoritarian manner. This book deals with the tensions between democracy and environmentalism from a variety of theoretical and empirical perspectives. (shrink)
Despite the fact that informal labour is a widespread phenomenon, the business ethics literature tends to describe it as a problem that needs to be overcome, rather than contemplating its merits. Informal labour is linked to poor working conditions, low-income and insufficient protection. However, it is also a survival strategy and upholds essential services, such as waste collection and recycling. Through the lens of postmodern ethics, we analyse 45 interviews with formal and informal waste management workers in Kinshasa. The study (...) explores the functioning and limits of recycling services in a metropolis, focusing on the experience of African workers and entrepreneurs. A complex picture of ethical challenges and individual business and survival strategies emerges from the analysis. Our findings demonstrate that labour decisions of voiceless people cannot be reduced to being rational or desperate choices, but that they reflect a careful elaboration of currently available options and strategies for the future. The study contributes to our understanding of entrepreneurship in a post-conflict context, the role of informal labour in the functioning of formal businesses in Africa and the contribution of postmodern theory to the study of businesses in non-Western societies. (shrink)
The "ethical environment of business" provides a constructive frame of reference for business ethics instruction. As illustrated by a suggested role play about foreign sweatshops, it provides a realistic, problem-solving context for the study of moral and ethical ideas. Once ethical behavior is viewed through this paradigm, students can better see how business policies are shaped by ethics and prepare themselves to react to their own ethical environment.