Exploitative, irresistible, and coercive offers: why research participants should be paid well or not at all

Journal of Global Ethics 12 (1):69-86 (2016)
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Abstract

ABSTRACTThis paper begins with the assumption that it is morally problematic when people in need are offered money in exchange for research participation if the amount offered is unfair. Such offers are called ‘coercive’, and the degree of coerciveness is determined by the offer's potential to cause exploitation and its irresistibility. Depending on what view we take on the possibility to compensate for the sacrifices made by research participants, a wish to avoid ‘coercive offers’ leads to policy recommendations concerning payment for participation. For sacrifices considered compensable, we ought to offer either no payment or payment at a level deemed fair, while for sacrifices deemed incompensable, we always ought to offer no payment because as compensation appears and increases, so too does coercion. This article provides a model for thinking of the way in which degrees of exploitativeness, irresistibility, and coerciveness interact with the size of the reward for compensable and incompensable cases. T...

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Citations of this work

The Original Sin of Crowd Work for Human Subjects Research.Huichuan Xia - 2022 - Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society 20 (3):374-387.
The Ethical Anatomy of Payment for Research Participants.Joanna Różyńska - 2022 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 25 (3):449-464.

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References found in this work

Value in Ethics and Economics.Elizabeth Anderson - 1993 - Harvard University Press.
Harm to Self.Joel Feinberg - 1986 - Oxford University Press USA.
Exploitation.Alan Wertheimer - 1996 - Princeton University Press.
Coercion.Robert Nozick - 1969 - In White Morgenbesser (ed.), Philosophy, Science, and Method: Essays in Honor of Ernest Nagel. St Martin's Press. pp. 440--72.

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