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Journal Cover Science and Engineering Ethics
  [SJR: 0.372]   [H-I: 31]   [9 followers]  Follow
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 1471-5546 - ISSN (Online) 1353-3452
   Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2335 journals]
  • America COMPETES at 5 years: An Analysis of Research-Intensive
           Universities’ RCR Training Plans
    • Authors: Trisha Phillips; Franchesca Nestor; Gillian Beach; Elizabeth Heitman
      Abstract: This project evaluates the impact of the National Science Foundation's (NSF) policy to promote education in the responsible conduct of research (RCR). To determine whether this policy resulted in meaningful RCR educational experiences, our study examined the instructional plans developed by individual universities in response to the mandate. Using a sample of 108 U.S. institutions classified as Carnegie “very high research activity”, we analyzed all publicly available NSF RCR training plans in light of the consensus best practices in RCR education that were known at the time the policy was implemented. We found that fewer than half of universities developed plans that incorporated at least some of the best practices. More specifically, only 31% of universities had content and requirements that differed by career stage, only 1% of universities had content and requirements that differed by discipline; and only 18% of universities required some face-to-face engagement from all classes of trainees. Indeed, some schools simply provided hand-outs to their undergraduate students. Most universities (82%) had plans that could be satisfied with online programs such as the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative's RCR modules. The NSF policy requires universities to develop RCR training plans, but provides no guidelines or requirements for the format, scope, content, duration, or frequency of the training, and does not hold universities accountable for their training plans. Our study shows that this vaguely worded policy, and lack of accountability, has not produced meaningful educational experiences for most of the undergraduate students, graduate students, and post-doctoral trainees funded by the NSF.
      PubDate: 2017-03-15
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9883-5
  • The Role of Engineering Ethics on Concrete Fire Safety
    • Authors: Javad Yahaghi; Shahryar Sorooshian
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9892-4
  • Research Ethics Promotion in Higher Education Institutes
    • Authors: Zohrehsadat Naji; Mohammad Saeid Rezaee-Zavareh; Payman Salamati
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9888-0
  • Mentoring for Responsible Research: The Creation of a Curriculum for
           Faculty to Teach RCR in the Research Environment
    • Authors: Dena K. Plemmons; Michael W. Kalichman
      Abstract: Despite more than 25 years of a requirement for training in the responsible conduct of research (RCR), there is still little consensus about what such training should include, how it should be delivered, nor what constitutes “effectiveness” of such training. This lack of consensus on content, approaches and outcomes is evident in recent data showing high variability in the development and implementation of RCR instruction across universities and programs. If we accept that one of the primary aims of instruction in RCR/research ethics is “to foster a community of social responsibility” (Antes et al. 2009: 398), then it makes sense to consider the research environment itself—where learning one’s science happens where one also engages in social interaction around that science. In order to take the best advantage of that already existing/naturally occurring research environment, the authors, through a deliberative, collaborative, and integrative process, crafted a workshop curriculum meant to arm research faculty with concrete and specific tools to effectively introduce research ethics in the context of the research environment.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9897-z
  • Molecular Tumor Boards: Ethical Issues in the New Era of Data Medicine
    • Authors: Henri-Corto Stoeklé; Marie-France Mamzer-Bruneel; Charles-Henry Frouart; Christophe Le Tourneau; Pierre Laurent-Puig; Guillaume Vogt; Christian Hervé
      Abstract: The practice and development of modern medicine requires large amounts of data, particularly in the domain of cancer. The future of personalized medicine lies neither with “genomic medicine” nor with “precision medicine”, but with “data medicine” (DM) (big data, data mining). The establishment of this DM has required far-reaching changes, to establish four essential elements connecting patients and doctors: biobanks, databases, bioinformatic platforms and genomic platforms. The “transformation” of scientific research areas, such as genetics, bioinformatics and biostatistics, into clinical specialties has generated a new vision of care. Molecular tumor boards (MTB) are one response to these changes and are now providing better access to next-generation sequencing (NGS) and new cancer treatments to patients with inoperable or metastatic cancers, and those for whom the usual treatment has failed. However, MTB face a crucial ethical challenge: maintaining and improving the trust of patients, clinicians, researchers and industry in academic medical centers supported by private or public funding rather than providing genetic data directly to private companies. We believe that, in this era of DM, appropriate modern digital communication networks will be required to maintain this trust and to improve the organization and effectiveness of the system. There is, therefore, a need to reconsider the form and content of informed consent (IC) documents at all academic medical centers and to introduce dynamic and electronic informed consent (e-IC).
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9880-8
  • Who Discovered the Binary System and Arithmetic' Did Leibniz
           Plagiarize Caramuel'
    • Authors: J. Ares; J. Lara; D. Lizcano; M. A. Martínez
      Abstract: Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646–1716) is the self-proclaimed inventor of the binary system and is considered as such by most historians of mathematics and/or mathematicians. Really though, we owe the groundwork of today’s computing not to Leibniz but to the Englishman Thomas Harriot and the Spaniard Juan Caramuel de Lobkowitz (1606–1682), whom Leibniz plagiarized. This plagiarism has been identified on the basis of several facts: Caramuel’s work on the binary system is earlier than Leibniz’s, Leibniz was acquainted—both directly and indirectly—with Caramuel’s work and Leibniz had a natural tendency to plagiarize scientific works.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9890-6
  • Questionable, Objectionable or Criminal' Public Opinion on Data Fraud
           and Selective Reporting in Science
    • Authors: Justin T. Pickett; Sean Patrick Roche
      Abstract: Data fraud and selective reporting both present serious threats to the credibility of science. However, there remains considerable disagreement among scientists about how best to sanction data fraud, and about the ethicality of selective reporting. The public is arguably the largest stakeholder in the reproducibility of science; research is primarily paid for with public funds, and flawed science threatens the public’s welfare. Members of the public are able to make meaningful judgments about the morality of different behaviors using moral intuitions. Legal scholars emphasize that to maintain legitimacy, social control policies must be developed with some consideration given to the public’s moral intuitions. Although there is a large literature on popular attitudes toward science, there is no existing evidence about public opinion on data fraud or selective reporting. We conducted two studies—a survey experiment with a nationwide convenience sample (N = 821), and a follow-up survey with a representative sample of US adults (N = 964)—to explore community members’ judgments about the morality of data fraud and selective reporting in science. The findings show that community members make a moral distinction between data fraud and selective reporting, but overwhelmingly judge both behaviors to be immoral and deserving of punishment. Community members believe that scientists who commit data fraud or selective reporting should be fired and banned from receiving funding. For data fraud, most Americans support criminal penalties. Results from an ordered logistic regression analysis reveal few demographic and no significant partisan differences in punitiveness toward data fraud.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9886-2
  • Using Surplus Embryos and Research Embryos in Stem Cell Research: Ethical
           Viewpoints of Buddhist, Hindu and Catholic Leaders in Malaysia on the
           Permissibility of Research
    • Authors: Mathana Amaris Fiona Sivaraman
      Abstract: The sources of embryos for Embryonic Stem Cell Research (ESCR) include surplus embryos from infertility treatments, and research embryos which are created solely for an ESCR purpose. The latter raises more ethical concerns. In a multi-religious country like Malaysia, ethical discussions on the permissibility of ESCR with regard to the use surplus and research embryos are diversified. Malaysia has formulated guidelines influenced by the national fatwa ruling which allows the use of surplus embryos in ESCR. Input from other main religions is yet to be documented. In light of this, this study addresses (i) the ethical viewpoints of Buddhist, Hindu and Catholic leaders on the permissibility of using surplus and research embryos; and (ii) the moral standpoints of religious leaders towards attaining a consensus on the practice of ESCR in Malaysia. Responses from the religious leaders were obtained via semi-structured, face-to-face interviews. The findings show that generally the Buddhist and Hindu leaders approve the use of surplus embryos. Their responses on the creation of research embryos for ESCR are varied. Meanwhile, the Catholic leaders distinctively objected to ESCR regardless of the embryo sources, referring to it as the destruction of life. Taking into account the diverse views, this study explores the response of the religious leaders for a general consensus wherever possible. The ethical discourse surrounding ESCR in a multi-religious setting offers new perspective, which needs to be explored in a broader global community.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9893-3
  • Climate Change and Professional Responsibility: A Declaration of Helsinki
           for Engineers
    • Authors: Rob Lawlor; Helen Morley
      Abstract: In this paper, we argue that the professional engineering institutions ought to develop a Declaration of Climate Action. Climate change is a serious global problem, and the majority of greenhouse gas emissions come from industries that are enabled by engineers and represented by the engineering professional institutions. If the professional institutions take seriously the claim that a profession should be self-regulating, with codes of ethics that go beyond mere obedience to the law, and if they take their own ethical codes seriously, recognising their responsibility to the public and to future generations (and also recognising a duty of “responsible leadership”), the professional institutions ought to develop a declaration for engineers, addressing climate change. Our argument here is largely inspired by the history of the Declaration of Helsinki. The Declaration of Helsinki was created by the medical profession for the profession, and it held physicians to a higher standard of ethical conduct than was found in the legal framework of individual countries. Although it was not originally a legal document, the influence of the Declaration can be seen in the fact that it is now enshrined in law in a number of different countries. Thus, we argue that the engineering profession could, and should, play a significant role in the abatement of climate change by making changes within the profession. If the engineering profession sets strict standards for professional engineers, with sanctions for those who refuse to comply, this could have a significant impact in relation to our efforts to develop a coordinated response to climate change.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9884-4
  • A Unique Historical Case to Understand the Present Sustainable Development
    • Authors: Astrid Barona; Begoña Etxebarria; Aida Aleksanyan; Gorka Gallastegui; Naiara Rojo; Estibaliz Diaz-Tena
      Abstract: Every innovation seeks to become a profitable business, with this considered to be the engine for economic prosperity. When an innovation is revolutionary, its long-term consequences can be revolutionary too. The Haber-Bosh process for ammonia synthesis is arguably the twentieth century’s most significant innovation, and its importance to global food production and its impact on the environment are not expected to diminish over the coming decades. The historical case of the ammonia synthesis process invented by Fritz Haber and the ensuing innovation provides an incomparable opportunity to illustrate the interactions across contemporary needs, prominent scientists, political concerns, moral dilemmas, ethics, governance and environmental implications at a time when the concept of sustainability was still in its infancy. Despite its high economic and environmental costs, no cleaner or more efficient sustainable alternative has so far been found, and so replacing this “old” innovation that still “feeds” a large part of the world’s population does not appear to be on the cards in the near future.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9891-5
  • Ethical Concerns About Human Genetic Enhancement in the Malay Science
           Fiction Novels
    • Authors: Noor Munirah Isa; Muhammad Fakhruddin Hj Safian Shuri
      Abstract: Advancements in science and technology have not only brought hope to humankind to produce disease-free offspring, but also offer possibilities to genetically enhance the next generation’s traits and capacities. Human genetic enhancement, however, raises complex ethical questions, such as to what extent should it be allowed' It has been a great challenge for humankind to develop robust ethical guidelines for human genetic enhancement that address both public concerns and needs. We believe that research about public concerns is necessary prior to developing such guidelines, yet the issues have not been thoroughly investigated in many countries, including Malaysia. Since the novel often functions as a medium for the public to express their concerns, this paper explores ethical concerns about human genetic enhancement expressed in four Malay science fiction novels namely Klon, Leksikon Ledang, Transgenesis Bisikan Rimba and Transgenik Sifar. Religion has a strong influence on the worldview of the Malays therefore some concerns such as playing God are obviously religious. Association of the negative image of scientists as well as the private research companies with the research on human genetic enhancement reflects the authors’ concerns about the main motivations for conducting such research and the extent to which such research will benefit society.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9887-1
  • The Strength of Ethical Matrixes as a Tool for Normative Analysis Related
           to Technological Choices: The Case of Geological Disposal for Radioactive
    • Authors: Céline Kermisch; Christophe Depaus
      Abstract: The ethical matrix is a participatory tool designed to structure ethical reflection about the design, the introduction, the development or the use of technologies. Its collective implementation, in the context of participatory decision-making, has shown its potential usefulness. On the contrary, its implementation by a single researcher has not been thoroughly analyzed. The aim of this paper is precisely to assess the strength of ethical matrixes implemented by a single researcher as a tool for conceptual normative analysis related to technological choices. Therefore, the ethical matrix framework is applied to the management of high-level radioactive waste, more specifically to retrievable and non-retrievable geological disposal. The results of this analysis show that the usefulness of ethical matrixes is twofold and that they provide a valuable input for further decision-making. Indeed, by using ethical matrixes, implicit ethically relevant issues were revealed—namely issues of equity associated with health impacts and differences between close and remote future generations regarding ethical impacts. Moreover, the ethical matrix framework was helpful in synthesizing and comparing systematically the ethical impacts of the technologies under scrutiny, and hence in highlighting the potential ethical conflicts.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9882-6
  • Patient Autonomy and Quality of Care in Telehealthcare
    • Authors: Giovanni Rubeis; Maximilian Schochow; Florian Steger
      Abstract: Telemedicine is a complex field including various applications and target groups. Especially telehealthcare is seen by many as a means to revolutionize medicine. It gives patients the opportunity to take charge of their own health by using self-tracking devices and allows health professionals to treat patients from a distance. To some, this means an empowerment of patient autonomy as well as an improvement in the quality of care. Others state the dangers of depersonalization of medicine and the pathologization of daily life. This paper examines the ethical implications of telehealthcare, focusing on patient autonomy and quality of care by analyzing metareviews, randomized controlled trials and narrative ethical analyses on the topic. As a result, we conclude that the technically enhanced encounter between patients and health professionals may mean an empowerment of patient autonomy when it goes along with a personal relationship based on trust, assistance and support. When it comes to the quality of care, telehealthcare may lead to an improvement as long it is adopted to the patient’s individual needs.
      PubDate: 2017-03-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9885-3
  • Economic, Environmental and Moral Acceptance of Renewable Energy: A Case
           Study—The Agricultural Biogas Plant at Pěčín
    • Authors: Marek Vochozka; Anna Maroušková; Petr Šuleř
      Abstract: The production of renewable energy in agricultural biogas plants is being widely criticized because—among other things—most of the feedstock comes from purpose-grown crops like maize. These activities (generously subsidized in the Czech Republic) generate competitive pressure to other crops that are used for feeding or food production, worsening their affordability. Unique pretreatment technology that allows substitution of the purpose-grown crops by farming residues (such as husk or straw) was built 6 years ago on a commercial basis in Pěčín (Czech Republic) under modest funding and without publicity. The design of the concept; financial assessment and moral viewpoint were analyzed based on practical operating data. It showed that the apparatus improves economic, environmental and moral acceptance as well. However, according to the government’s view, public funding for this type of processing was shortened, “because waste materials represent a lower cost”. The impact of such governance was analyzed as well.
      PubDate: 2017-03-08
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9881-7
  • Organizing a Collaborative Development of Technological Design
           Requirements Using a Constructive Dialogue on Value Profiles: A Case in
           Automated Vehicle Development
    • Authors: Steven M. Flipse; Steven Puylaert
      Abstract: Following societal and policy pressures for responsible innovation, innovators are more and more expected to consider the broader socio-ethical context of their work, and more importantly, to integrate such considerations into their daily practices. This may require the involvement of ‘outsiders’ in innovation trajectories, including e.g. societal and governmental actors. However, methods on how to functionally organize such integration in light of responsible innovation have only recently started to emerge. We present an approach to do just that, in which we first develop value profiles of the involved actors, and second, design a workshop setting that allows innovators to develop design requirements in collaboration with representatives of parties that are not usually involved in such innovation design practices. Using a case study in automated vehicle development, we positively demonstrate the possibility and utility of our approach. We stress that in this study we wish to demonstrate the functionality of our developed method, and did not search for scientifically valid outcomes regarding this technical field.
      PubDate: 2017-03-08
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9877-3
  • Clarivate Analytics: Continued Omnia vanitas Impact Factor Culture
    • Authors: Jaime A. Teixeira da Silva; Sylvain Bernès
      Abstract: This opinion paper takes aim at an error made recently by Clarivate Analytics in which it sent out an email that congratulated academics for becoming exclusive members of academia’s most cited elite, the Highly Cited Researchers (HCRs). However, that email was sent out to an undisclosed number of non-HCRs, who were offered an apology shortly after, through a bulk mail, which tried to down-play the importance of the error, all the while praising the true HCRs. When Clarivate Analytics senior management was contacted, the company declined to offer an indication of the number of academics who had been contacted and erroneously awarded the HCR status. We believe that this regrettable blunder, together with the opacity offered by the company, fortify the corporate attitude about the value of the journal impact factor (JIF), and what it represents, namely a marketing tool that is falsely used to equate citations with quality, worth, or influence. The continued commercialization of metrics such as the JIF is at the heart of their use to assess the “quality” of a researcher, their work, or a journal, and contributes to a great extent to driving scientific activities towards a futile endeavor.
      PubDate: 2017-02-23
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9873-7
  • Print Me an Organ? Ethical and Regulatory Issues Emerging from 3D
           Bioprinting in Medicine
    • Authors: Frederic Gilbert; Cathal D. O’Connell; Tajanka Mladenovska; Susan Dodds
      Abstract: Recent developments of three-dimensional printing of biomaterials (3D bioprinting) in medicine have been portrayed as demonstrating the potential to transform some medical treatments, including providing new responses to organ damage or organ failure. However, beyond the hype and before 3D bioprinted organs are ready to be transplanted into humans, several important ethical concerns and regulatory questions need to be addressed. This article starts by raising general ethical concerns associated with the use of bioprinting in medicine, then it focuses on more particular ethical issues related to experimental testing on humans, and the lack of current international regulatory directives to guide these experiments. Accordingly, this article (1) considers whether there is a limit as to what should be bioprinted in medicine; (2) examines key risks of significant harm associated with testing 3D bioprinting for humans; (3) investigates the clinical trial paradigm used to test 3D bioprinting; (4) analyses ethical questions of irreversibility, loss of treatment opportunity and replicability; (5) explores the current lack of a specific framework for the regulation and testing of 3D bioprinting treatments.
      PubDate: 2017-02-09
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9874-6
  • Publishers: Save Authors’ Time
    • Authors: Khaled Moustafa
      Abstract: Scientific journals ask authors to put their manuscripts, at the submission stage, sometimes in a complex style and a specific pagination format that are time consuming while it is unclear yet that the submitted manuscripts will be accepted. In the case of rejections, authors need to submit to another journal most likely with a different style and formatting that require additional work and time. To save authors’ time, publishers should allow authors to submit their manuscripts in any format and to comply with the style required by the targeted journal only in revised versions, but not at the submission step when the manuscripts are not yet approved for publication.
      PubDate: 2017-02-02
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9879-1
  • Effect of Unprofessional Supervision on Durability of Buildings
    • Authors: Javad Yahaghi
      Abstract: The durability of buildings which depends on the nature of the supervisory system used in their construction is an important feature of the construction industry. This article tries to draw the readers’ attention to the effect of untrained and unprofessional building supervisors and their unethical performance on the durability of buildings.
      PubDate: 2017-02-02
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9871-9
  • Business Ethics for Mobile Network Operators
    • Authors: Shahryar Sorooshian
      Abstract: The letter is highlighting a case of Business Ethics for Mobile Network Operators based on the recent news.
      PubDate: 2017-02-02
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-017-9878-2
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