Debating Science: Deliberation, Values, and the Common Good

Overview

In this work, accomplished scholars and noted experts focus on ethical deliberation and the larger moral context surrounding the controversies over scientific research and technological innovations. The insightful and accessible original works emphasize deliberation rather than adversarial debate—that is, they encourage the development of mental habits that enable stakeholders to work comprehensively and systematically through challenging issues with others.

This compelling ...

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Overview

In this work, accomplished scholars and noted experts focus on ethical deliberation and the larger moral context surrounding the controversies over scientific research and technological innovations. The insightful and accessible original works emphasize deliberation rather than adversarial debate—that is, they encourage the development of mental habits that enable stakeholders to work comprehensively and systematically through challenging issues with others.

This compelling volume addresses such foundational issues as the need for ethics education, applying ethics to science debates, determining moral objectives, freedom versus public regulation, outlining economic considerations, and effectively communicating science to the public—all of which must be considered before examining the current debates surrounding biotechnology, nanotechnology, and climate change.

Topics considered include food security, the apparent urgency of the global warming problem versus public indifference, designing nanotechnology that is mindful of ethical considerations, and much more. The views expressed here will help students and citizens alike become better informed about science and will go far toward promoting constructive discussion about the values at stake in contemporary debates over scientific research and emerging technologies.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a terrific book, stimulating, provocative, enjoyable. I learned a huge amount about science and values, and how these sorts of things really matter in education and the marketplace. I recommend it strongly."
-MICHAEL RUSE, author of Defining Darwin

"Almost transcending its title, this collection lives up to its promise of ethical deliberation that is more productive than polarizing, adversarial debate. The range of topics is inclusive: disease and health, agriculture and food, biodiversity, science and policy, regulation, public funding of science, and science and economics. The contributors consider equity and efficiency in science, science and justice, advocacy, uncertainty, complexity, sustainability, climate change, genetically modified organisms, nanotechnology, and engineering. Always, the skillful authors argue with care—care about their arguments, care about their causes, and concern for fairness. Here we move past winning a zero-sum game, or accepting compromise, to creatively cooperating for a richer community."
-HOLMES ROLSTON III, University Distinguished Professor and Professor of Philosophy Emeritus, Colorado State University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781616144999
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 12/20/2011
  • Pages: 215
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Dane Scott II, PhD, is director of the Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program and associate professor of ethics, Department of Society and Conservation, College of Forestry and Conservation at the University of Montana.

Blake Francis, MA, is a PhD student in the Department of Philosophy at Stanford University.

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Table of Contents

Preface 9

Part 1 Foundational Issues

Section 1 Ethics and the Science Debates

1 Debating Science: Ethics Education and Deliberation Dane Scott 17

2 Overcoming Scientific Ideology Bernard Rollin 33

3 Overcoming Philosophobia: A Few Ethical Tools for the Science Debates Christopher J. Preston 49

4 Bridging the Gap: Global Justice in Health Research Julian Culp Nicole Hassoun 69

Section 2 Policy and the Science Debates

5 Intellectual Liberty and the Public Regulation of Scientific Research Clark Wolf 83

6 Efficiency vs. Equity: Economic Considerations in the Science Debates Richard Barrett 101

7 Communicating Science: Moral Responsibility in Theory and Practice Wendy S. Parker 117

Part 2 Science and Technology Debates

Section 1 Biotechnology

8 Is Sustainability Worth Debating? Paul B. Thompson 133

9 Biotechnology and the Pursuit of Food Security David Castle 147

Section 2 Climate Change

10 Ethically Dealing with Climate Change: Comparing the Maldives, China, and the United States Bill McKibben 163

11 Science, Ethics, and Technology and the Challenge of Global Warming Albert Borgmann 169

12 Ten Ethical Questions That Should Be Asked of Those Who Oppose Climate Change Polices on Scientific Grounds Donald A. Brown 179

Section 3 Nanotechnology

13 Value-Sensitive Design and Nanotechnology Ronald Sandler 205

14 Debating Nanoethics: US Public Perceptions of Nanotech Applications for Energy and Environment Barbara Herr Harthorn Jennifer Rogers Christine Shearer Tyronne Martin 227

Contributors 245

Notes 251

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