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Perna de Pau
April 22nd, 2009, 05:59 PM
It is commonly accepted that in science not everything that is possible should be allowed. There are rules for experimentation on human beings and in most (developed) countries there are ethical committees which authorise (or not) research projects in sensitive areas.

Some say that existing regulations are too strict and slow down scientific progress, others say that much of what is allowed should in fact be forbidden (stem cells is an example).

What should be the general criteria according to which research projects would be considered ethical or not?

sudikics
April 22nd, 2009, 06:05 PM
The stem cell debate is fueled by religion, not science. If scientists had problems with stem cell research, then they would have problems with tumor research.

Perna de Pau
April 22nd, 2009, 10:11 PM
I did no mean to imply that the debate on stem cell research was a problem for scientists. My point is that society is not prepared to accept everything possible from a scientific point of view. Of course religion plays a role in such acceptance but it not the only criteria.

For example today nobody would defend the "research" of nazi doctors during the second world war and this is not related to religion.

I am interested in discussing the general criteria for a scientific project to be considered ethical or unethical.

sudikics
April 23rd, 2009, 01:27 AM
I'd say that science follows the same criteria as everything else: if you didn't tell anyone that your actions were in a science experiment, would your actions be ethical?

By the way, while I don't support the actions of the Nazi doctors in WWII, I do not believe we should throw out their data. We can use their results.

Al Farabi
April 23rd, 2009, 05:04 AM
By the way, while I don't support the actions of the Nazi doctors in WWII, I do not believe we should throw out their data. We can use their results.

Agreed. The practises were wrong, and were stopped. How can data be ethically wrong?

pclamb
April 23rd, 2009, 05:14 AM
It is commonly accepted that in science not everything that is possible should be allowed. There are rules for experimentation on human beings and in most (developed) countries there are ethical committees which authorise (or not) research projects in sensitive areas.

Some say that existing regulations are too strict and slow down scientific progress, others say that much of what is allowed should in fact be forbidden (stem cells is an example).

What should be the general criteria according to which research projects would be considered ethical or not?

I think we should experiment on you, and spare your ancestor the monkey...at least he can say no and i have respect for beasts that are smarter than beasts like you...

Tsar Phalanxia
April 23rd, 2009, 11:00 AM
By the way, while I don't support the actions of the Nazi doctors in WWII, I do not believe we should throw out their data. We can use their results.
Agreed. The practises were wrong, and were stopped. How can data be ethically wrong?
Woah, this is deep. But wouldn't the usage of that datat make it seem like the actions of Nazi doctors were OK? It smacks of utilitarianism.
I think we should experiment on you, and spare your ancestor the monkey...at least he can say no and i have respect for beasts that are smarter than beasts like you...
If you're going to troll, at least make it possible for the trolled to understand you.

djura
April 23rd, 2009, 12:21 PM
By the way, while I don't support the actions of the Nazi doctors in WWII, I do not believe we should throw out their data. We can use their results.

it's kinda of a touchy subject. Use results - yes up to a certain point, but I don't think any self respecting scientist should concentrate research around unethically achieved concepts. Thus, how should we evaluate such results? Surely we can't conduct the experiments again in order to verify the results.

sudikics
April 23rd, 2009, 09:38 PM
It certainly doesn't undermine the actual data. Although the performance of the experiments was atrocious, we learned valuable data about the exposure of humans to various chemicals.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi_experiments#Modern_ethical_issues

djura
April 24th, 2009, 10:08 AM
it's not so much of an ethical issue when it comes to result verification.
OK, so we know, based on nazi experiments, if you inject a person in the hart with petrol, he/she will die. No surprise there. But, let's say you might need this data, and actual "experiment" result in order to create something useful (although I couldn't think of anything that would put such knowledge to good use). And, since nazis probably documented whole "experiment" all too well, one could use this data. But, what if the nazis got it wrong? Did they use premium or unleaded? How would you verify this research without doing the same thing again (killing a whole bunch of people). You can't just say "nazis did it and they came up with data I used" now, can you? Research that can't be verified over and over again, isn't vary useful, and since we can't do the same thing they did, you might as well forget about it. Thus, the really juicy bits they came up with ware probably seased by the military right after the war, so no civil scientist can't even get to it.

Tsar Phalanxia
April 24th, 2009, 10:33 AM
Indeed, that's one of the reasons the Russians were so determined to get to Berlin; to get all the secrets for the German atomic weapon programme (They didin't get far; they were trying to build one using heavy water)

sudikics
April 24th, 2009, 05:30 PM
Indeed, that's one of the reasons the Russians were so determined to get to Berlin; to get all the secrets for the German atomic weapon programme (They didin't get far; they were trying to build one using heavy water)
Plus the Allies blew up the main research center.

Tsar Phalanxia
April 24th, 2009, 05:33 PM
As in, Americans/British, or Allies in general?