University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Department of Philosophy
PhD, 1998
Hattiesburg, Mississippi, United States of America
Areas of Specialization
Normative Ethics
Areas of Interest
Applied Ethics
  •  89
    The Influence of Disclosure and Ethics Education on Perceptions of Financial Conflicts of Interest
    with Donald F. Sacco, Alen Hajnal, and Chris J. N. Lustgraaf
    Science and Engineering Ethics 21 (4): 875-894. 2015.
    This study explored how disclosure of financial conflicts of interest influences naïve or “lay” individuals’ perceptions of the ethicality of researcher conduct. On a between-subjects basis, participants read ten scenarios in which researchers disclosed or failed to disclose relevant financial conflicts of interest. Participants evaluated the extent to which each vignette represented a FCOI, its possible influence on researcher objectivity, and the ethics of the financial relationship. Participa…Read more
  •  88
    Duties of Gratitude
    Philosophy in the Contemporary World 10 (1): 11-15. 2003.
    This paper is a response to a recent article by Christopher Wellman in which Wellman argues that gratitude is better understood as a virtue rather than a source of moral obligations. First, I offer several examples intended to dispute his claim that gratitude does not impose duties. Second, I provide my own reasons for thinking that deontic notions alone cannot capture the moral significance of gratitude. Wellman’s mistake is attributable to an overly narrow conception of duty that his argument …Read more
  •  56
    Teaching the golden rule
    Journal of Business Ethics 49 (2): 179-187. 2004.
    The Golden Rule is endorsed in oneform or another by most cultures and majorreligions and is still espoused byphilosophers, business ethicists, and popularbusiness authors. Because it also resonateswith undergraduate business majors, it can bean effective teaching tool. This paperdescribes a way of teaching the Golden Rulethrough a series of business-oriented examplesintended to bring out its strengths andweaknesses. The method described alsointroduces students to some basic moralreasoning skill…Read more
  •  22
    Looks-Based Hiring and Wrongful Discrimination
    Business and Society Review 120 (4): 607-635. 2015.
    Popular clothing retailer Abercrombie and Fitch (A&F) is well-known for hiring attractive store sales clerks. While the economic benefits of this hiring practice for the company are undeniable, many commentators contend that it constitutes wrongful discrimination against unattractive job seekers. In this article, I explore the ethics of A&F-style lookism and challenge two common perspectives on this issue. I argue that on one hand, looks-based hiring cannot be defended based on its economic bene…Read more
  •  21
    Education Journal Editors’ Perspectives on Self-Plagiarism
    with John R. Rachal
    Journal of Academic Ethics 13 (1): 13-25. 2015.
    The perspectives of academic journal editors regarding self-plagiarism were examined by means of an online survey in which 277 editors of education journals participated. Following the survey, a sub-sample of 14 editors were interviewed. A substantial majority of editors were found to be in accord with the most recent edition of the Publication Manual of the APA in believing that re-use of long, verbatim passages or tables, figures and images from an author’s previously published work without ap…Read more
  •  9
    Grounds for Ambiguity: Justifiable Bases for Engaging in Questionable Research Practices
    with Donald F. Sacco and Mitch Brown
    Science and Engineering Ethics 25 (5): 1321-1337. 2019.
    The current study sought to determine research scientists’ sensitivity to various justifications for engaging in behaviors typically considered to be questionable research practices by asking them to evaluate the appropriateness and ethical defensibility of each. Utilizing a within-subjects design, 107 National Institutes of Health principal investigators responded to an invitation to complete an online survey in which they read a series of research behaviors determined, in prior research, to ei…Read more
  •  5
    No Title available: Book Reviews (review)
    Utilitas 15 (2): 248-249. 2003.
  •  5
    Personal Motivations and Systemic Incentives: Scientists on Questionable Research Practices
    with Mary Medlin, Mitch Brown, and Donald F. Sacco
    Science and Engineering Ethics 26 (3): 1531-1547. 2020.
    As concern over the use of questionable research practices in academic science has increased over the last couple of decades, some reforms have been implemented and many others have been debated and recommended. While many of these proposals have merit, efforts to improve scientific practices are more likely to succeed when they are responsive to the prevailing views and concerns of scientists themselves. To date, there have been few efforts to solicit wide-ranging input from researchers on the …Read more
  •  5
    No Title available: Book Reviews (review)
    Utilitas 15 (1): 121-123. 2003.
  •  3
    What’s it to me? Self-interest and evaluations of financial conflicts of interest
    with Donald F. Sacco
    Research Ethics 14 (4): 1-17. 2017.
    Disclosure has become the preferred way of addressing the threat to researcher objectivity arising from financial conflicts of interest. This article argues that the effectiveness of disclosure at protecting science from the corrupting effects of FCOIs—particularly the kind of disclosure mandated by US federal granting agencies—is more limited than is generally acknowledged. Current NIH and NSF regulations require disclosed FCOIs to be reviewed, evaluated, and managed by officials at researchers…Read more
  • After Virtue—Twenty Years After
    Vera Lex 3 (1/2): 108-125. 2002.
  • Kant's Conception of the Moral Law: Themes in "Groundwork" Ii
    Dissertation, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 1998.
    This dissertation explores several related themes from the second Chapter of Immanuel Kant's Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals. A particular focus is Kant's view of the moral law as a law of reason and the similarities between this view and the position of the natural lawyers. My first chapter summarizes and interprets the conception of morality found in four leading natural law theorists--Cicero, Aquinas, Suarez and Grotius--which provides the basis for some preliminary comparisons with Ka…Read more