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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]
  • Definitions and Conceptual Dimensions of Responsible Research and
           Innovation: A Literature Review
    • Authors: Mirjam Burget; Emanuele Bardone; Margus Pedaste
      Pages: 1 - 19
      Abstract: Abstract The aim of this study is to provide a discussion on the definitions and conceptual dimensions of Responsible Research and Innovation based on findings from the literature. In the study, the outcomes of a literature review of 235 RRI-related articles were presented. The articles were selected from the EBSCO and Google Scholar databases regarding the definitions and dimensions of RRI. The results of the study indicated that while administrative definitions were widely quoted in the reviewed literature, they were not substantially further elaborated. Academic definitions were mostly derived from the institutional definitions; however, more empirical studies should be conducted in order to give a broader empirical basis to the development of the concept. In the current study, four distinct conceptual dimensions of RRI that appeared in the reviewed literature were brought out: inclusion, anticipation, responsiveness and reflexivity. Two emerging conceptual dimensions were also added: sustainability and care.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9782-1
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Will Life Be Worth Living in a World Without Work' Technological
           Unemployment and the Meaning of Life
    • Authors: John Danaher
      Pages: 41 - 64
      Abstract: Abstract Suppose we are about to enter an era of increasing technological unemployment. What implications does this have for society' Two distinct ethical/social issues would seem to arise. The first is one of distributive justice: how will the (presumed) efficiency gains from automated labour be distributed through society' The second is one of personal fulfillment and meaning: if people no longer have to work, what will they do with their lives' In this article, I set aside the first issue and focus on the second. In doing so, I make three arguments. First, I argue that there are good reasons to embrace non-work and that these reasons become more compelling in an era of technological unemployment. Second, I argue that the technological advances that make widespread technological unemployment possible could still threaten or undermine human flourishing and meaning, especially if (as is to be expected) they do not remain confined to the economic sphere. And third, I argue that this threat could be contained if we adopt an integrative approach to our relationship with technology. In advancing these arguments, I draw on three distinct literatures: (1) the literature on technological unemployment and workplace automation; (2) the antiwork critique—which I argue gives reasons to embrace technological unemployment; and (3) the philosophical debate about the conditions for meaning in life—which I argue gives reasons for concern.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9770-5
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Ethics: An Indispensable Dimension in the University Rankings
    • Authors: Ali Khaki Sedigh
      Pages: 65 - 80
      Abstract: Abstract University ranking systems attempt to provide an ordinal gauge to make an expert evaluation of the university’s performance for a general audience. University rankings have always had their pros and cons in the higher education community. Some seriously question the usefulness, accuracy, and lack of consensus in ranking systems and therefore multidimensional ranking systems have been proposed to overcome some shortcomings of the earlier systems. Although the present ranking results may rather be rough, they are the only available sources that illustrate the complex university performance in a tangible format. Their relative accuracy has turned the ranking systems into an essential feature of the academic lifecycle within the foreseeable future. The main concern however, is that the present ranking systems totally neglect the ethical issues involved in university performances. Ethics should be a new dimension added into the university ranking systems, as it is an undisputable right of the public and all the parties involved in higher education to have an ethical evaluation of the university’s achievements. In this paper, to initiate ethical assessment and rankings, the main factors involved in the university performances are reviewed from an ethical perspective. Finally, a basic benchmarking model for university ethical performance is presented.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9758-1
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • A Mobilising Concept' Unpacking Academic Representations of
           Responsible Research and Innovation
    • Authors: Barbara E. Ribeiro; Robert D. J. Smith; Kate Millar
      Pages: 81 - 103
      Abstract: Abstract This paper makes a plea for more reflexive attempts to develop and anchor the emerging concept of responsible research and innovation (RRI). RRI has recently emerged as a buzzword in science policy, becoming a focus of concerted experimentation in many academic circles. Its performative capacity means that it is able to mobilise resources and spaces despite no common understanding of what it is or should be ‘made of’. In order to support reflection and practice amongst those who are interested in and using the concept, this paper unpacks understandings of RRI across a multi-disciplinary body of peer-reviewed literature. Our analysis focuses on three key dimensions of RRI (motivations, theoretical conceptualisations and translations into practice) that remain particularly opaque. A total of 48 publications were selected through a systematic literature search and their content was qualitatively analysed. Across the literature, RRI is portrayed as a concept that embeds numerous features of existing approaches to govern and assess emerging technologies. Our analysis suggests that its greatest potential may be in its ability to unify and provide political momentum to a wide range of long-articulated ethical and policy issues. At the same time, RRI’s dynamism and resulting complexity may represent its greatest challenge. Further clarification on what RRI has to offer in practice—beyond what has been offered to date—is still needed, as well as more explicit engagement with research and institutional cultures of responsibility. Such work may help to realise the high political expectations that are attached to nascent RRI.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9761-6
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • The Ethics of Doing Ethics
    • Authors: Sven Ove Hansson
      Pages: 105 - 120
      Abstract: Abstract Ethicists have investigated ethical problems in other disciplines, but there has not been much discussion of the ethics of their own activities. Research in ethics has many ethical problems in common with other areas of research, and it also has problems of its own. The researcher’s integrity is more precarious than in most other disciplines, and therefore even stronger procedural checks are needed to protect it. The promotion of some standpoints in ethical issues may be socially harmful, and even our decisions as to which issues we label as “ethical” may have unintended and potentially harmful social consequences. It can be argued that ethicists have an obligation to make positive contributions to society, but the practical implications of such an obligation are not easily identified. This article provides an overview of ethical issues that arise in research into ethics and in the application of such research. It ends with a list of ten practical proposals for how these issues should be dealt with.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9772-3
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Coding Ethical Decision-Making in Research
    • Authors: David J. Hartmann; Thomas Van Valey; Wayne Fuqua
      Pages: 121 - 146
      Abstract: Abstract This paper presents methods and challenges attendant on the use of protocol analysis to develop a model of heuristic processing applied to research ethics. Participants are exposed to ethically complex scenarios and asked to verbalize their thoughts as they formulate a requested decision. The model identifies functional parts of the decision-making task: interpretation, retrieval, judgment and editing and seeks to reliably code participant verbalizations to those tasks as well as to a set of cognitive tools generally useful in such work. Important difficulties in the reliability and external validity of measurement are evaluated and a small set of illustrative data is used in support of that discussion. Results indicate that both intuitive emotional but also more deliberative cognition is present which is consistent with work in related literatures in expertise and in neuropsychology. Finally, the theoretical and practical potential of the approach is elaborated, particularly through links to a framing in Aristotelian ethics.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9756-3
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Aware, Yet Ignorant: Exploring the Views of Early Career Researchers About
           Funding and Conflicts of Interests in Science
    • Authors: Meghnaa Tallapragada; Gina M. Eosco; Katherine A. McComas
      Pages: 147 - 164
      Abstract: Abstract This study investigates the level of awareness about funding influences and potential conflicts of interests (COI) among early career researchers. The sample for this study included users of one or more of the 14 U.S. laboratories associated with the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network. To be eligible, respondents must have been either still completing graduate work or <5 years since graduation. In total, 713 early career researchers completed the web survey, with about half still in graduate school. Results indicate that although respondents were aware of potential funding and COI influences on their work, they remained largely ignorant of their role in addressing or managing these issues. Respondents often attributed the responsibility of addressing these issues to their supervisors. Respondents who had received some training around these issues, however, were more likely to assume more personal responsibility. Overall, this study points out that ignorance among early career researchers is less about awareness of funding and COI issues and more about taking personal responsibility for addressing these issues.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9764-3
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Research Misconduct in the Croatian Scientific Community: A Survey
           Assessing the Forms and Characteristics of Research Misconduct
    • Authors: Vanja Pupovac; Snježana Prijić-Samaržija; Mladen Petrovečki
      Pages: 165 - 181
      Abstract: Abstract The prevalence and characteristics of research misconduct have mainly been studied in highly developed countries. In moderately or poorly developed countries such as Croatia, data on research misconduct are scarce. The primary aim of this study was to determine the rates at which scientists report committing or observing the most serious forms of research misconduct, such as falsification , fabrication, plagiarism, and violation of authorship rules in the Croatian scientific community. Additionally, we sought to determine the degree of development and the extent of implementation of the system for defining and regulating research misconduct in a typical scientific community in Croatia. An anonymous questionnaire was distributed among 1232 Croatian scientists at the University of Rijeka in 2012/2013 and 237 (19.2 %) returned the survey. Based on the respondents who admitted having committed research misconduct, 9 (3.8 %) admitted to plagiarism, 22 (9.3 %) to data falsification, 9 (3.8 %) to data fabrication, and 60 (25.3 %) respondents admitted to violation of authorship rules. Based on the respondents who admitted having observed research misconduct of fellow scientists, 72 (30.4 %) observed plagiarism, 69 (29.1 %) observed data falsification, 46 (19.4 %) observed data fabrication, and 132 (55.7 %) respondents admitted having observed violation of authorship rules. The results of our study indicate that the efficacy of the system for managing research misconduct in Croatia is poor. At the University of Rijeka there is no document dedicated exclusively to research integrity, describing the values that should be fostered by a scientist and clarifying the forms of research misconduct and what constitutes a questionable research practice. Scientists do not trust ethical bodies and the system for defining and regulating research misconduct; therefore the observed cases of research misconduct are rarely reported. Finally, Croatian scientists are not formally educated about responsible conduct of research at any level of their formal education. All mentioned indicate possible reasons for higher rates of research misconduct among Croatian scientists in comparison with scientists in highly developed countries.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9767-0
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • A Gendered Approach to Science Ethics for US and UK Physicists
    • Authors: Elaine Howard Ecklund; Di Di
      Pages: 183 - 201
      Abstract: Abstract Some research indicates that women professionals—when compared to men—may be more ethical in the workplace. Existing literature that discusses gender and ethics is confined to the for-profit business sector and primarily to a US context. In particular, there is little attention paid to gender and ethics in science professions in a global context. This represents a significant gap, as science is a rapidly growing and global professional sector, as well as one with ethically ambiguous areas. Adopting an international comparative perspective, this paper relies on 121 semi-structured interviews with US and UK academic physicists to examine how physicists perceive the impact of gender on science ethics. Findings indicate that some US and UK physicists believe that female scientists handle ethical issues within science in a feminine way whereas their male colleagues approach ethics in a masculine way. Some of these physicists further claim that these different approaches to science ethics lead to male and female scientists’ different levels of competitiveness in academic physics. In both the US and the UK, there are “gender-blind” physicists, who do not think gender is related to professional ethics. Relying on physicists’ nuanced descriptions this paper contributes to the current understanding of gender and science and engineering ethics.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9751-8
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Patients’ Awareness About Their Rights: A Study from Coastal South
    • Authors: Bhaskaran Unnikrishnan; Divya Trivedi; Tanuj Kanchan; Thapar Rekha; Prasanna Mithra; Nithin Kumar; Vaman Kulkarni; Ramesh Holla; Mishaal Talish
      Pages: 203 - 214
      Abstract: Abstract Respecting patients’ rights is a fundamental aspect of providing quality healthcare. The present investigation attempts to explore the awareness among patients about their rights in a coastal township in India. A questionnaire-based cross-sectional study was carried out among 215 patients admitted to the wards of a tertiary care teaching hospital in Mangalore. Awareness among patients regarding their rights varied for various issues and ranged between 48.4 and 87.4 %. Awareness about patients’ rights was independent of gender, socio-economic and educational status. Doctors were found to be the most common source of information for patient’s about their rights in the study. Doctors must conform to the relevant legislations and involve patients in all aspects of healthcare. There is a need to increase awareness among patients about their rights to ensure informed decisions and better health care services.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9776-z
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Relevant Information and Informed Consent in Research: In Defense of the
           Subjective Standard of Disclosure
    • Authors: Vilius Dranseika; Jan Piasecki; Marcin Waligora
      Pages: 215 - 225
      Abstract: Abstract In this article, we seek to contribute to the debate on the requirement of disclosure in the context of informed consent for research. We defend the subjective standard of disclosure and describe ways to implement this standard in research practice. We claim that the researcher should make an effort to find out what kinds of information are likely to be relevant for those consenting to research. This invites researchers to take empirical survey information seriously, attempt to understand the cultural context, talk to patients to be better able to understand what can be potentially different concerns and interests prevalent in the target population. The subjective standard of disclosure should be seen as a moral ideal that perhaps can never be perfectly implemented but still can and should be used as a normative ideal guiding research practice. In the light of these discussions, we call for more empirical research on what considerations are likely to be perceived as relevant by potential research participants recruited from different socio-economic and cultural groups.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9755-4
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Bribery and Its Ethical Implications for Aid Workers in the Developing
    • Authors: J. Scott Remer
      Pages: 227 - 241
      Abstract: Abstract Bribery is a complicated, multi-dimensional issue. Upon first glance, most westerners would immediately condemn it as an underhanded, unfair means of gaining an advantage in a competitive or legal situation, and so it is in virtually every case in the westernized world. However, the issue becomes much more complicated in the international context, particularly in developing nations, where giving and accepting bribes is often normal and expected. This paper serves to inform ethical decision-making in situations where the “right choice” is unclear with regards to bribery, primarily for individuals performing aid work in foreign countries with corrupt officials and police officers. In such contexts, a simple offering of food, money, or a small trinket may make the difference between a person being able to accomplish meaningful, life-changing work for the local populace or having that work significantly slowed at best and being thrown out of the country, robbed, or imprisoned in worse cases. The larger scale bribery issues in international business and the laws pertaining to them are also discussed.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9750-9
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Developing a Scientific Virtue-Based Approach to Science Ethics Training
    • Authors: Robert T. Pennock; Michael O’Rourke
      Pages: 243 - 262
      Abstract: Abstract Responsible conduct of research training typically includes only a subset of the issues that ought to be included in science ethics and sometimes makes ethics appear to be a set of externally imposed rules rather than something intrinsic to scientific practice. A new approach to science ethics training based upon Pennock’s notion of the scientific virtues may help avoid such problems. This paper motivates and describes three implementations—theory-centered, exemplar-centered, and concept-centered—that we have developed in courses and workshops to introduce students to this scientific virtue-based approach.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9757-2
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Strategies for Teaching Professional Ethics to IT Engineering Degree
           Students and Evaluating the Result
    • Authors: Rafael Miñano; Ángel Uruburu; Ana Moreno-Romero; Diego Pérez-López
      Pages: 263 - 286
      Abstract: Abstract This paper presents an experience in developing professional ethics by an approach that integrates knowledge, teaching methodologies and assessment coherently. It has been implemented for students in both the Software Engineering and Computer Engineering degree programs of the Technical University of Madrid, in which professional ethics is studied as a part of a required course. Our contribution of this paper is a model for formative assessment that clarifies the learning goals, enhances the results, simplifies the scoring and can be replicated in other contexts. A quasi-experimental study that involves many of the students of the required course has been developed. To test the effectiveness of the teaching process, the analysis of ethical dilemmas and the use of deontological codes have been integrated, and a scoring rubric has been designed. Currently, this model is also being used to develop skills related to social responsibility and sustainability for undergraduate and postgraduate students of diverse academic context.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-015-9746-x
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Assessing Freshman Engineering Students’ Understanding of Ethical
    • Authors: Amber M. Henslee; Susan L. Murray; Gayla R. Olbricht; Douglas K. Ludlow; Malcolm E. Hays; Hannah M. Nelson
      Pages: 287 - 304
      Abstract: Abstract Academic dishonesty, including cheating and plagiarism, is on the rise in colleges, particularly among engineering students. While students decide to engage in these behaviors for many different reasons, academic integrity training can help improve their understanding of ethical decision making. The two studies outlined in this paper assess the effectiveness of an online module in increasing academic integrity among first semester engineering students. Study 1 tested the effectiveness of an academic honesty tutorial by using a between groups design with a Time 1- and Time 2-test. An academic honesty quiz assessed participants’ knowledge at both time points. Study 2, which incorporated an improved version of the module and quiz, utilized a between groups design with three assessment time points. The additional Time 3-test allowed researchers to test for retention of information. Results were analyzed using ANCOVA and t tests. In Study 1, the experimental group exhibited significant improvement on the plagiarism items, but not the total score. However, at Time 2 there was no significant difference between groups after controlling for Time 1 scores. In Study 2, between- and within-group analyses suggest there was a significant improvement in total scores, but not plagiarism scores, after exposure to the tutorial. Overall, the academic integrity module impacted participants as evidenced by changes in total score and on specific plagiarism items. Although future implementation of the tutorial and quiz would benefit from modifications to reduce ceiling effects and improve assessment of knowledge, the results suggest such tutorial may be one valuable element in a systems approach to improving the academic integrity of engineering students.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9749-2
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Online-Based Approaches to Identify Real Journals and Publishers from
           Hijacked Ones
    • Authors: Amin Asadi; Nader Rahbar; Meisam Asadi; Fahime Asadi; Kokab Khalili Paji
      Pages: 305 - 308
      Abstract: The aim of the present paper was to introduce some online-based approaches to evaluate scientific journals and publishers and to differentiate them from the hijacked ones, regardless of their disciplines. With the advent of open-access journals, many hijacked journals and publishers have deceitfully assumed the mantle of authenticity in order to take advantage of researchers and students. Although these hijacked journals and publishers can be identified through checking their advertisement techniques and their websites, these ways do not always result in their identification. There exist certain online-based approaches, such as using Master Journal List provided by Thomson Reuters, and Scopus database, and using the
      DOI of a paper, to certify the realness of a journal or publisher. It is indispensable that inexperienced students and researchers know these methods so as to identify hijacked journals and publishers with a higher level of probability.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Responses of Authors Accused of Plagiarism by Journal Editors
    • Authors: Somsri Wiwanitkit; Viroj Wiwanitkit
      Pages: 309 - 311
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9752-7
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Time for Revelation: Unmasking the Anonymity of Blind Reviewers
    • Authors: Govindasamy Agoramoorthy
      Pages: 313 - 315
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9778-x
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Chinese and Iranian Scientific Publications: Fast Growth and Poor Ethics
    • Authors: Behzad Ataie-Ashtiani
      Pages: 317 - 319
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9766-1
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
  • Consented Autopsy and the Middle-East
    • Authors: Magdy A. Kharoshah; Syed Ather Hussain; Mohammed Madadin; Ritesh G. Menezes
      Pages: 321 - 322
      Abstract: Abstract Consented autopsy is almost non-existent in the Middle-East where established social and cultural beliefs regarding the procedure might discourage family members from requesting a consented autopsy. Evidence suggests that new information is obtained from consented autopsies. It would not be in the best interest of medicine if social and cultural misconceptions succeed in erasing the existence of consented autopsies entirely.
      PubDate: 2017-02-01
      DOI: 10.1007/s11948-016-9760-7
      Issue No: Vol. 23, No. 1 (2017)
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Heriot-Watt University
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