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Public Policy: Why ethics matters

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ISBN: 9781921666759 Year: Pages: 311 DOI: 10.26530/OAPEN_459474 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2012-06-14 11:46:24
License: ANU Press

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Ethics is a vigorously contested field. There are many competing moral frameworks, and different views about how normative considerations should inform the art and craft of governmental policy making. What is not in dispute, however, is that ethics matters. The ethical framework adopted by policy analysts and decision makers not only shapes how policy problems are defined, framed and analysed, but also influences which ethical principles and values are taken into account and their weighting. As a result, ethics can have a profound impact, both on the character of the policy process and the choices made by decision makers. Public Policy – Why Ethics Matters brings together original contributions from leading scholars and practitioners with expertise in various academic disciplines, including economics, philosophy, physics, political science, public policy and theology. The volume addresses three main issues: fist, the ethical considerations that should inform the conduct of public officials and the task of policy analysis; second, the ethics of climate change; and third, ethics and economic policy. While the contributors have varying views on these important issues, they share a common conviction that the ethical dimensions of public policy need to be better understood and given proper attention in the policy-making process.

Speaking Power to Truth: Digital Discourse and the Public Intellectual

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Book Series: Cultural Dialectics ISSN: 19158378 ISBN: 9781771990332 9781771990349 9781771990356 9781771990363 Year: Pages: 216 DOI: 10.15215/aupress/9781771990332.01 Language: English
Publisher: Athabasca University Press
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2016-08-10 20:14:58
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Online discourse has created a new media environment for contributions to public life, one that challenges the social significance of the role of public intellectuals—intellectuals who, whether by choice or by circumstance, offer commentary on issues of the day. The value of such commentary is rooted in the assumption that, by virtue of their training and experience, intellectuals possess knowledge—that they understand what constitutes knowledge with respect to a particular topic, are able to distinguish it from mere opinion, and are in a position to define its relevance in different contexts. When intellectuals comment on matters of public concern, they are accordingly presumed to speak truth, whether they are writing books or op-ed columns or appearing as guests on radio and television news programs. At the same time, with increasing frequency, discourse on public life is taking place online. This new digital environment is characterized by abundance—an abundance of speakers, discussion, and access. But has this abundance of discourse—this democratization of knowledge, as some describe it—brought with it a corresponding increase in truth?Casting doubt on the assertion that online discourse, with its proliferation of voices, will somehow yield collective wisdom, Speaking Power to Truth raises concerns that this wealth of digitally enabled commentary is, in fact, too often bereft of the hallmarks of intellectual discourse: an epistemological framework and the provision of evidence to substantiate claims. Instead, the pursuit of truth finds itself in competition with the quest for public reputation, access to influence, and enhanced visibility. But as knowledge is drawn into the orbit of power, and as the line between knowledge and opinion is blurred, what role will the public intellectual play in the promotion and nurturing of democratic processes and goals? In exploring the implications of the digital transition, the contributors to Speaking Power to Truth provide both empirical evidence of, and philosophical reflection on, the current and future role of the public intellectual in a technologically mediated public sphere.

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