In this paper we present two compatible hypotheses to explain interest in celebrity gossip. The Learning Hypothesis explains interest in celebrity gossip as a by-product of an evolved mechanism useful for acquiring fitness-relevant survival information. The Parasocial Hypothesis sees celebrity gossip as a diversion of this mechanism, which leads individuals to misperceive celebrities as people who are part of their social network. Using two preliminary studies, we tested our predictions. In a survey with 838 respondents and in-depth interviews with 103 (...) individuals, we investigated how interest in celebrity gossip was related to several dimensions of the participants’ social lives. In support of the Learning Hypothesis, age proved to be a strong predictor of interest in celebrities. In partial support of the Parasocial Hypothesis, media exposure, but not social isolation, was a strong predictor of interest in celebrities. The preliminary results support both theories, indicate that across our life span celebrities move from being teachers to being friends, and open up a list of future research opportunities. (shrink)
During the past twenty years, there has been an explosion of new interest in entrepreneurs and their activities. Yet only recently has serious research attention been devoted to the ethical problems encountered by entrepreneurs and their organizations. Entrepreneurs face uniquely complex moral problems related to basic fairness, personnel and customer relationships, distribution dilemmas, and other challenges. This essay surveys contemporary research in entrepreneurial ethics, examines the kinds of ethical dilemmas entrepreneurs confront, identifies major research topics and methodological approaches, and discusses (...) possible directions for future research. (shrink)
In recent years executive coaching has become an important management development practice in many organizations. Executive coaching is a partnership between a management level client and a coach hired by an organization to assist the executive in becoming a more effective and successful manager. While executive coaching has become a frequent and important practice in organizations, there has been relatively little serious consideration of the complex ethical issues that arise for persons and organizations. This study proposes that executive coaching involves (...) an agency relation with specific moral duties that go beyond the usual standards of professional ethics. Agency theory, and in particular a focused understanding of the agency relationship, can provide a needed ethical grounding and basis for moral thinking about executive coaching. (shrink)
This paper explores the development of the chemical table as a tool designed for chemical information visualization. It uses a historical context to investigate the purpose of chemical tables and charts, analyzing them from the perspective of theory of tables, cartography, and design. It suggests reasons why the two-dimensional periodic table remains the de facto standard for chemical information display.
BackgroundEthical and regulatory guidance on the collection and use of human biospecimens for research forms an essential component of national health systems in Sub-Saharan Africa, where rapid advances in genetic- and genomic-based technologies are fueling clinical trials involving HBS and the establishment of large-scale biobanks.MethodsAn extensive multi-level search for publicly available ethics regulatory guidance was conducted for each SSA country. A second review documented active trials listed in the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform as of January 2015 in which (...) HBS collection was specified in the protocol. Findings were combined to determine the extent to which countries that are study sites for HBS-related research are supported by regulatory guidance language on the collection, use, ownership and storage of biospecimens.ResultsOf the 49 SSA countries, 29 had some form of national ethics guidance, yet only 17 provided language relating to HBS-related research, with specific guidance on consent, ownership, reuse, storage, and export/import/transfer. Ten countries accounted for 84 % of the active clinical trials involving the collection of HBS in SSA. All except one of these countries were found to have some national guidance in the form of regulations, codes of ethics, and/or standard operating procedures; however, only seven of the ten offered any language specific to HBS.ConclusionsDespite the fact that the bulk of registered clinical trials in SSA involving HBS, as well as existing and proposed sites for biorepositories under the H3Africa Initiative, are currently situated in countries with the most complete ethics and regulatory guidance, variability in the regulations themselves may create challenges for planned and future pan-African collaborations and may require legislative action at the national level to revise. Countries in SSA that still lack regulatory guidance on HBS will require extensive health system strengthening in ethics governance before they can be full participants in the modern research enterprise. (shrink)
Background: Family sense of coherence can be defined as the cognitive map of a family that enables the family to deal with stress during their lifetime. FSOC is the degree to which a family perceives family life as comprehensible, manageable, and meaningful. To the best of our knowledge, few studies have used this scale, and very few have evaluated FSOC Scale psychometric properties.Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the psychometric properties of the original FSOC Scale in a sample of Portuguese (...) caregivers of children aged between 10 and 15 years.Methods: A total of 329 caregivers completed a sociodemographic questionnaire and the FSOC Scale. Analyses were performed to evaluate the factor structure of the FSOC Scale with 26 items as well as composite reliability, internal consistency, convergent-related validity, and discriminant-related validity of the scale scores.Results: The findings supported a three-factor solution for a 13-item version that maintains the original FSOC Scale structure. The three FSOC dimensions presented a good fit to the data. Cronbach’s alpha, composite reliability, and convergent-related validity were considered very good for the FSOC Scale. No evidence of discriminant-related validity was found for the dimensions of FSOC.Conclusion: The findings support the use of the Portuguese FSOC Scale for research and clinical purposes with Portuguese caregivers. Future research is necessary to further develop a European Portuguese version of the FSOC Scale.Implications: This study provides a psychometric evaluation of FSOC Scale characteristics in a Portuguese sample. The results are helpful for clinicians and family therapists who work with families since it could help them to assess the resources of families and their ability to cope with adversity and enhance their strengths. (shrink)
En dépit de toutes les proclamations sur la " mort de la métaphysique ", la philosophie ne peut aujourd'hui, pas plus qu'hier, se passer de l'interrogation métaphysique. Si elle décidait d'abandonner l'enquête sur les questions au-delà de l'expérience, elle laisserait le champ libre à toutes les spéculations irrationnelles, aux charlatanismes de la quête spirituelle, aux marchands d'illusion illuminée. La question " Pourquoi y a-t-il quelque chose plutôt que rien? " semble réunir à elle seule quelques vertus et tous les péchés (...) que l'on prête à la métaphysique. Certainement insoluble, elle en montre bien le caractère ridicule, dépassé, voire inepte. Evidemment radicale, elle indique ce que la métaphysique a d'inévitable, de nécessaire, voire d'ultime. Elle est en tout cas un nœud de difficultés et de concepts dont les doctrines classiques sont loin d'avoir épuisé les possibles et sur lesquels la discussion s'avère encore féconde. La première partie de ce livre interroge donc la question elle-même : est-elle une ou multiple, a-t-elle un sens ou non, quelles raisons a-t-on pu avancer pour la disqualifier ou pour prétendre y avoir répondu? C'est à approfondir quelques réponses nouvelles, et possibles, qu'est consacrée la seconde partie qui fait surgir d'autres problèmes : la plausibilité des réponses théistes et naturalistes, la pensabilité du néant, l'impossibilité d'un monde vide, les limites du principe de raison suffisante. Francis Wolff, pour le groupe MENS. (shrink)
Recent EEG studies on the early postmortem interval that suggest the persistence of electrophysiological coherence and connectivity in the brain of animals and humans reinforce the need for further investigation of the relationship between the brain’s activity and the dying process. Neuroscience is now in a position to empirically evaluate the extended process of dying and, more specifically, to investigate the possibility of brain activity following the cessation of cardiac and respiratory function. Under the direction of the Center for Healthy (...) Minds at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, research was conducted in India on a postmortem meditative state cultivated by some Tibetan Buddhist practitioners in which decomposition is putatively delayed. For all healthy baseline and postmortem subjects presented here, we collected resting state electroencephalographic data, mismatch negativity, and auditory brainstem response. In this study, we present HB data to demonstrate the feasibility of a sparse electrode EEG configuration to capture well-defined ERP waveforms from living subjects under very challenging field conditions. While living subjects displayed well-defined MMN and ABR responses, no recognizable EEG waveforms were discernable in any of the tukdam cases. (shrink)
In matters such as affirmative action or home schooling, rights of ethnic and other minority groups often come into conflict with those of society in a culturally diverse population such as ours. But before considering the dilemmas posed by these issues, we must first ask such basic but important questions as what group rights are and how they intersect with the principles of democracy. This new collection brings together some of today's leading thinkers from the cutting edge of these debates, (...) taking in a broad range of issues confronting philosophers, sociologists, and political scientists. Contributors such as Carl Wellman, Carol Gould, and Rex Martin examine the nature of groups and the conflict between group rights and democracy and also consider case studies depicting current issues in cultural, ethnic, and religious rights. The first section, on the nature of groups, examines some of the perplexing alternatives in the formulation of a theory of group rights. These articles investigate the kinds of rights minorities might claim and ask when groups can be held responsible for the acts of some of their members. The second section addresses the treatment of groups in a democracy and the precarious balance between indifference toward minorities and capitulation to their demands. Here the contributors examine five principles for the sensitive treatment of minority and disadvantaged groups in a democratic society. A final section explores specific conflicts between subgroup and societal claims through case studies dealing with affirmative action, religious practice and the education of children, and the land rights of indigenous peoples. By drawing on the legal and political dilemmas related to these cases, the authors confront issues of core versus peripheral interests, of individual member versus subgroup rights, and of the possibilities for social openness raised in the preceding sections Written from varied perspectives, Groups and Group Rights offers stimulating reading for both students and professionals as it takes on some of the most pressing dilemmas confronting our society. (shrink)
If nothing else, Francis Fukuyama seems to have identified one of the more effective conversational gambits of recent memory. The apparently earnest declaration that history has ended seems to have an irresistible power to call forth commentary from all quarters. More than six years have passed since the publication of Fukuyama’s original article, and four years since the publication of his book on the same theme, The End of History and the Last Man, and the commentary still continues.