HYLE--International Journal for Philosophy of Chemistry, Vol. 21, No. 1 (2015), pp. 69.
Copyright © 2015 by HYLE and Tom Børsen and Joachim Schummer

Call for Papers

HYLE invites papers for a special issue on

Ethical Case Studies of Chemistry

Deadline: 31 March 2016

Since many years national and international organizations, such as UNESCO’s World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST), have recommended mandatory courses of ethics for all undergraduate students of science and engineering. While such courses have been established in numerous countries and for various student groups, chemistry is still lagging behind, despite the special importance here. One reason for that is the lack of appropriate course materials. This special issue is meant to fill the gap and to encourage ethics of chemistry courses based on a canonical set of case studies that will be published open access.

We particularly welcome case studies that fall in one of the following four groups:

  1. Intentional misuse and misconduct
    e.g., scientific misconduct in chemistry, chemical weapons research, support of drug abuse.
  2. Unforeseen consequences
    e.g., industrial pollutants, industrial disasters, adverse side-effects of products.
  3. Global and long-term influences and challenges
    e.g. chemical prediction of environmental or health problems, geochemical engineering, green chemistry, global human and environmental challenges for chemistry, impact on global economy.
  4. Impact on human culture
    How do chemical agendas affect cultural values, ethical principles, or religious ideas? Possible cases include patenting DNA, creation of life, human enhancement, and chemical modernism.

All submission must meet special requirements to be suitable as course material. Apart from being accessible to undergraduate students of chemistry and between 7,000 and 9,000 words long, they must include

  • an introduction that points out why today’s chemistry students should be familiar with the case and what general lessons are to be learned;
  • a historically and chemically informed case description that situates the case in its organizational, institutional, broader societal or/and global context;
  • a detailed ethical analysis that links the case to appropriate ethical concepts and principles and highlights, if possible, dilemmas and conflicts of interests rather than clear-cut moral judgments;
  • a brief discussion of comparable cases;
  • a list of accessible literature for further reading.

Manuscripts should follow the general Guidelines for Authors, available on the HYLE website (www.hyle.org). Before you are planning to submit, check with the editors about the suitability of your case and later send your submission in appropriate form for anonymous peer review not later than 31 March 2016 to both editors:

Tom Børsen, Aalborg University, Denmark; boersen@plan.aau.dk

Joachim Schummer, Editor-in-chief of HYLE; editor@hyle.org

Copyright © 2015 by HYLE and Tom Børsen and Joachim Schummer