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  • 1.
    Björkman, Barbro
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy.
    Hansson, Sven Ove
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy.
    Bodily Rights and Property Rights2006In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 32, no 4, p. 209-214Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Whereas previous discussions on ownership of biological material have been much informed by the natural rights tradition, insufficient attention has been paid to the strand in liberal political theory represented by Felix Cohen, Tony Honore, and others, which treats property relations as socially constructed bundles of rights. In accordance with that tradition, we propose that the primary normative issue is what combination of rights a person should have to a particular item of biological material. Whether that bundle qualifies to be called `` property'' or `` ownership'' is a secondary, terminological issue. We suggest five principles of bodily rights and show how they can be applied to the construction of ethically appropriate bundles of rights to biological material.

  • 2.
    Grill, Kalle
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology.
    Hansson, Sven Ove
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology.
    Epistemic Paternalism in Public Health2005In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 31, no 11, p. 648-653Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Receiving information about threats to one’s health can contribute to anxiety and depression. In contemporary medical ethics there is considerable consensus that patient autonomy, or the patient’s right to know, in most cases outweighs these negative effects of information. Worry about the detrimental effects of information has, however, been voiced in relation to public health more generally. In particular, information about uncertain threats to public health, from—for example, chemicals—are said to entail social costs that have not been given due consideration. This criticism implies a consequentialist argument for withholding such information from the public in their own best interest. In evaluating the argument for this kind of epistemic paternalism, the consequences of making information available must be compared to the consequences of withholding it. Consequences that should be considered include epistemic effects, psychological effects, effects on private decisions, and effects on political decisions. After giving due consideration to the possible uses of uncertain information and rebutting the claims that uncertainties imply small risks and that they are especially prone to entail misunderstandings and anxiety, it is concluded that there is a strong case against withholding of information about uncertain threats to public health.

  • 3.
    Hansson, Sven Ove
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology, Philosophy.
    Extended antipaternalism2005In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 31, no 2, p. 97-100Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Extended antipaternalism means the use of antipaternalist arguments to defend activities that harm ( consenting) others. As an example, a smoker's right to smoke is often invoked in defence of the activities of tobacco companies. It can, however, be shown that antipaternalism in the proper sense does not imply such extended antipaternalism. We may therefore approve of Mill's antipaternalist principle ( namely, that the only reason to interfere with someone's behaviour is to protect others from harm) without accepting activities that harm ( consenting) others. This has immediate consequences for the ethics of public health. An antipaternalist need not refrain from interfering with activities such as the marketing of tobacco or heroin, boxing promotion, driving with unbelted passengers, or buying sex from voluntary'' prostitutes.

  • 4.
    Hansson, Sven Ove
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy.
    Implant ethics2005In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 31, no 9, p. 519-525Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Implant ethics is defined here as the study of ethical aspects of the lasting introduction of technological devices into the human body. Whereas technological implants relieve us of some of the ethical problems connected with transplantation, other difficulties arise that are in need of careful analysis. A systematic approach to implant ethics is proposed. The major specific problems are identified as those concerning end of life issues (turning off devices), enhancement of human capabilities beyond normal levels, mental changes and personal identity, and cultural effects.

  • 5. Peterson, Martin
    Should the precautionary principle guide our actions or our beliefs?2007In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 33, no 1, p. 5-10Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Two interpretations of the precautionary principle are considered. According to the normative (action-guiding) interpretation, the precautionary principle should be characterised in terms of what it urges doctors and other decision makers to do. According to the epistemic (belief-guiding) interpretation, the precautionary principle should be characterised in terms of what it urges us to believe. This paper recommends against the use of the precautionary principle as a decision rule in medical decision making, based on an impossibility theorem presented in Peterson ( 2005). However, the main point of the paper is an argument to the effect that decision theoretical problems associated with the precautionary principle can be overcome by paying greater attention to its epistemic dimension. Three epistemic principles inherent in a precautionary approach to medical risk analysis are characterised and defended.

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