Ethics in Progress, 2021, Volume 12, Issue 1


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 10
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    Expectations towards the Morality of Robots: An Overview of Empirical Studies
    (Wydział Filozoficzny, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, 2021-08-27) Wasielewska, Aleksandra
    The main objective of this paper is to discuss people’s expectations towards social robots’ moral attitudes. Conclusions are based on the results of three selected empirical studies which used stories of robots (and humans) acting in hypothetical scenarios to assess the moral acceptance of their attitudes. The analysis indicates both the differences and similarities in expectations towards the robot and human attitudes. Decisions to remove someone’s autonomy are less acceptable from robots than from humans. In certain circumstances, the protection of a human’s life is considered more morally right than the protection of the robot’s being. Robots are also more strongly expected to make utilitarian choices than human agents. However, there are situations in which people make consequentialist moral judgements when evaluating both the human and the robot decisions. Both robots and humans receive a similar overall amount of blame. Furthermore, it can be concluded that robots should protect their existence and obey people, but in some situations, they should be able to hurt a human being. Differences in results can be partially explained by the character of experimental tasks. The present findings might be of considerable use in implementing morality into robots and also in the legal evaluation of their behaviours and attitudes.
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    Giving Moral Competence High Priority in Medical Education. New MCT-based Research Findings from the Polish Context
    (Wydział Filozoficzny, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, 2021-08-27) Nowak, Ewa; Barciszewska, Anna-Maria; Lind, Georg; Hemmerling, Kay; Taradi, Sunčana Kukolja
    Nowadays, healthcare and medical education is qualified by test scores and competitiveness. This article considers its quality in terms of improving the moral competence of future healthcare providers. Objectives. Examining the relevance of moral competence in medico-clinical decision-making despite the paradigm shift and discussing the up-to-date findings on healthcare students (Polish sample). Design and method. N=115 participants were surveyed with a standard Moral Competence Test to examine how their moral competence development was affected by the learning environment and further important factors. Results. The sample allowed the identification of a regress in moral competence during students’ pre-clinical curriculum, and progress during their clinical curriculum. A gender-related bias, a segmentation effect, and a pronunciation effect were noticed. Explanations. Scholarly literature usually reports a linear decrease of medical students’ C-scores resulting from, e.g., competitive trends in education. We identified such trends in terms of gender-specific competitive tactics. Religious and ethical affiliations were discussed to explain the unexpected gender bias and the related segmentation and pronunciation effects. The findings can be regarded as predictive for similar developments in educational institutions regardless of cultural contexts as the sample examined in this article represents medical education in a country facing a transition from a non-competitive to competitive tertiary education model, and between presecular and monocultural to secular and pluralist social ethics.
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    The Impact of the Moral Foundations Arguments on Early Adolescents
    (Wydział Filozoficzny, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, 2021-08-27) Stastna, Kamila
    The empirical research reported in this article is based on the Moral Foundations Theory proposed by J. Haidt. Objectives. The author examines the impact of moral foundations arguments on early adolescents’ moral judgments regarding violating moral rules and explores gender-related differences between moral foundations preferences. Method. The effect of moral foundations arguments was measured by a newly developed meta-ethical position test (MEPT). The MEPT consists of a pretest questionnaire, treatment by moral foundations arguments, and a posttest questionnaire. The sample contained 178 early adolescents from the Czech Republic (84 females and 94 males). The influence of the moral foundations arguments was analyzed by comparing the pretest with the posttest. Results. 91% of teenagers changed their moral judgment due to confrontations with the moral foundations arguments. A Wilcoxon signed-rank test found that the moral foundations arguments were significantly relevant, since the P-value was lower than 0.001. The Mann-Whitney U test revealed the importance of the gender aspect: P-value care equals 0.01 and liberty 0.01. Girls have a preference for care foundation (21% more than boys), while boys tended to liberty (27 % more than girls). It seems that moral foundations arguments strongly change early adolescents’ moral judgments and can be practically applied as a valuable platform for early adolescents’ moral development.
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    The Effect of Moral Competence on Online Conformity Behavior
    (Wydział Filozoficzny, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, 2021-08-27) Mofakhami, Aida
    Moral Competence, defined as the ability to solve conflicts on the basis of shared moral principles through cooperation rather than through violence, deceit and power, has received little attention among different psychological approaches; despite its importance in predicting many of our social interactions. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of moral competence on online conformity behavior. 217 students from universities in Teheran were selected for a quasi-experimental study. First, participants’ moral competence was measured with the online Moral Competence Test (MCT) by G. Lind (1978/2019). Then the subjects participated in an online version of an Asch type experiment in which conformity was induced. The results showed a clear conformity behavior in the use of the internet. An average of 32.09% of participants conformed to each critical question. When compared to Asch`s line judgment task, the mean conformity in this experiment was lower, but still significant enough to indicate conformity behavior (36.8% compared with 7.4%), which might stem from the online situation, in which some other variables like the deindividuation effect might influence this difference. The results also indicated that there was a weak but negative correlation between moral competence and conformity behavior. The results confirm our hypothesis weakly; subjects with higher moral competence tended to show lower conformity. If the results could be replicated, it would imply that conformity is not a general and stable trait of people, as Asch assumed, but depends on people’s level of moral competence, which can be fostered through education.
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    What, If Anything, Most Memorable Personal Moral Dilemmas Can Tell Us About Women’s and Men’s Moral Competence?
    (Wydział Filozoficzny, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, 2021-08-27) Klimenko, Marina A.
    Most all popular moral reasoning or moral judgment tests are based on presenting subjects with two or more hypothetical moral dilemmas and asking them to make judgments on the moral quality of arguments supporting and questioning a protagonist’s decision (e.g., the Moral Competence Test by G. Lind). Although these tests have been insightful by tapping some aspect of individuals’ moral-cognitive schemas, moral maturity, or moral development, they also have limitations. Hypothetical moral dilemmas may be too abstract and impersonal, thus failing to create enough emotional salience. Learning more about real-life personally recalled moral dilemmas may reveal more about the individual’s moral mind and experiences. Objective. The current study was conducted to learn more about the personally experienced moral dilemmas, and how they relate to subjects’ level of moral competence and gender. Method. Subjects were asked to recall the most challenging personal moral dilemma; subjects completed the MCT test to measure moral competence. Results. Among some of the findings was that for both, men and women, higher moral competence scores were positively correlated with recalling personal moral dilemmas where the choice had to be made between some altruistic (care for others) and selfish actions. For men, it was the risk of compromising one’s status, whereas for women it was the risk of personal safety.