The Ethics of Governance: Moral Limits of Policy Decisions offers a toolbox drawn from normative ethics which finds applications in public governance, primarily focusing on policy making and executive action. It includes ethical concepts and principles culled from different philosophical traditions, ranging from more familiar Western theories to non-Western ethical perspectives, thereby providing a truly global, decolonized and expanded normative lens on issues of governance. The book takes a unique and original approach; it demonstrates the use of the ethical toolbox in the context of actual examples of governance challenges.
Taking three major case studies each representing an aspect of human-human and/or human-nature and/or human-animal relationship, the book attempts to show the significance of public practical reasoning in policy decisions with the aim of arriving at reasonable responses. Acknowledging the challenges that policy makers often face, the book highlights the fact that policy making is hardly an exercise yielding a black-or-white solution; rather it involves finding the most reasonable normative outcome (course of action) in a given situation, especially employing an expanded understanding of values including well-being, sustainability, interdependence and community. This effort that helps bridge the gap between ethical theorists and policy practitioners exemplifies the necessary role of ‘engaged philosophy’ in public governance.
In the major case studies, Boxes offer facts and figures along with pertinent ethical questions that have been raised and discussed. Aiming to aid the engagement of a diverse audience including non-philosophy readers, each chapter also includes Boxes containing examples, shorter case studies, at-a-glance charts, and tables with comprehensive ethical tools for a quick recap.
Introduction.- Chapter 1: The Role of Public Practical Reasoning in Good Governance.- Chapter 2: Introducing the Cases.- Chapter 3: Western Consequence-based ethics: Cost versus Benefits.- Chapter 4: Principle-based ethics: ‘means’ versus ‘ends’.- Chapter 5: Human Well-being: Moving Beyond Social Welfare and Human Rights.- Chapter 6: Care, community, compassion and virtue: Decolonizing our Moral Landscape.- Chapter 7: Revisiting the Cases: The Ethical toolbox in Praxis.- Conclusion: Ethics of Governance: Moral Limits of Policy Decisions.
Dr. (Ms.) Shashi Motilal (Retd.) Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, University of Delhi, India, obtained her PhD from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo, USA. She has authored several articles published in national and international journals. She has co-authored Human Rights, Gender and Environment, New Delhi: Allied Publishers (2006, 2011), co-edited Social Inequality: Concerns of Human Rights, Gender and Environment, New Delhi: Macmillan Publishing Co. (2010) and edited Applied Ethics and Human Rights: Conceptual Analysis and Contextual Applications. London: Anthem Press. (2010). She has been a member of the Committee for the Purpose of Control and Supervision of Experiments on Animals (CPCSEA) , Ministry of Environment, Forests and CLimate Change, Government of India, and a member of the Institutional Ethics Committee at TERI, New Delhi, India.Keya Maitra is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina Asheville, USA. Her current research and teaching interests include feminist philosophy of mind, Third World feminism, epistemology of mindfulness, and Hindu and Buddhist philosophies. She is the author of two books, including, most recently, The Philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita: A Contemporary Introduction (Bloomsbury, 2018). Her articles have appeared in journals including Asian Philosophy, Hypatia, Philosophy: East and West, Southern Journal of Philosophy, Journal of the American Philosophical Association, and Philosophy in the Contemporary World among others. Her book chapters have appeared in anthologies from Columbia University Press, Routledge and Bloomsbury Academic. Her co-edited Feminist Philosophy of Mind is forthcoming from Oxford University Press. Prakriti Prajapati is a Research Associate at the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi. Her research interests lie at the intersection of environmental governance, critical theory and public policy. She is passionate about ethics education in engineering and public policy, and has served as a guest faculty in professional ethics at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
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