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    Responsible risk management: associated basic moral concepts

  • Right : A capacity of action that others are obliged to recognize and respect. A key right in the context of risk is free and informed consent. (See below)
  • Duty : The obligation to recognize and respect the essential capacities of actions of others. Duties are correlative to rights. For example, the duty to avoid paternalism in the management and communication of risk is correlative to the right of free and informed consent.
  • Virtue : Responsible risk management can also be formulated as a virtue. Virtues are traits that extend "deep down" into an individual's character. They include an orientation toward excellence in decision and execution, perceptual sensitivities that help to uncover moral relevance, and emotions/attitudes that help motivate decisions and actions oriented toward achieving excellence. For example, a responsible risk communicator has curiosity that drives understanding and appreciating risk, a concern for the well being of the risk bearer, and a strong desire to communicate risk information truthfully and clearly.
  • Justice : Justice can be generally defined as giving each his or her due. Distributive justice, in the context of risk, prescribes a fair distribution of the benefits and harms associated with taking a certain risk. Ideal pattern approaches argue that distribution should conform to a pattern such as equality (equal shares to everyone), need (greatest share to those with the greatest needs), and merit (greatest share to those who demonstrate superior merit). Ideal pattern approaches require continual redistribution by government through measures such as a progressive income tax. Historical process approaches prefer maintaining current patterns of distribution provided the historical process leading to them has been free of force or fraud. Justice in the context of risk lies in determining how the benefits and harms associated with risk are distributed, and how the uncertainty that permeates the risk assessment and management process is distributed among those involved.
  • Responsibility : Herbert Fingarette defines responsibility (in the context of criminal insanity) as (moral) response to (moral) relevance. Different senses of responsibility include causal, legal (vs. moral), role, capacity, and blame. Responsibility can be reactive when it focuses on the past and the assigning of praise and blame; or it can be proactive when it turns to preventing harm (minimizing risk) and realizing value.
  • Trust : The expectation of moral behavior on the part of others. Trust is built out of the social capital accumulated through successful interactions with others. It is consumed or undermined by those who choose to free ride on social cooperation, i.e., compete while others are cooperating. The prisoner's dilemma (see link above) provides a simplified model to show the fragility of trust (m17367).

    Key terms in risk practices

  • Safety : "A thing is safe if, were its risks fully known, those risks would be judged acceptable in light of settled value principles." (IEE 108)
  • Risk : "A risk is the potential that something unwanted and harmful may occur." (IEE 108)
  • NIMBY : This acronym stands for "Not in my backyard." Citizens often find the risks associated with a project or product acceptable only if these are located somewhere else, i.e., in another person's backyard. NIMBY has made it next to impossible for the U.S. DOE (Department of Energy) to find an acceptable permanent storage facility for nuclear waste.
  • Free and Informed Consent : The right to decide if a risk is acceptable based on access to pertinent information and absence of compulsion. The Belmont Report defines informed consent in the following way: "[that] subjects, to the degree that they are capable, be given the opportunity to choose what shall or shall not happen to them. This opportunity is provided when adequate standards for informed consent are satisfied." The Online Ethics Center spells out conditions necessary for fulfilling informed consent: (a) disclosure (of information to the patient/subject); (b) comprehension (by the patient/subject of the information being disclosed); (c) voluntariness (of the patient/subject in making his/her choice); (d) competence (of the patient/subject to make a decision); and (e) consent (by the patient/subject).
  • Paternalism : Often experts are tempted to act as overly concerned parents and take over the decision-making perogatives of the public because they (the experts) "know better." Paternalism, while well motivated, is based on the misconception that the public doesn't understand risk because it often reaches different conclusions on the acceptability of a given risk than the expert. But the public often appreciates risk from a broader, richer standpoint, especially if the expert has properly and clearly communicated it. As will be seen below, the public perception of risk is rational because it is predictable.

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Civis project - uprm. OpenStax CNX. Nov 20, 2013 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11359/1.4
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