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Latest Morality Stories

2012-03-15 23:25:42

It´s normal to not always act on your sense of compassion–for example, by walking past a beggar on the street without giving them any money. Maybe you want to save your money or avoid engaging with a homeless person. But even if suppressing compassion avoids these costs, it may carry a personal cost of its own, according to a new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science. After people suppress compassionate feelings, an...

2012-02-21 21:16:23

Researchers say theory may help explain ethical lapses that led to recession Why do some people behave morally while others do not? Sociologists at the University of California, Riverside and California State University, Northridge have developed a theory of the moral self that may help explain the ethical lapses in the banking, investment, and mortgage-lending industries that nearly ruined the U.S. economy. For decades, sociologists have posited that individual behavior results from...

2012-02-16 14:21:45

UC Riverside and CSU Northridge sociologists´ research suggests how bankers, stock brokers and mortgage lenders justified ruinous actions. Why do some people behave morally while others do not? Sociologists at the University of California, Riverside and California State University, Northridge have developed a theory of the moral self that may help explain the ethical lapses in the banking, investment and mortgage-lending industries that nearly ruined the U.S. economy. For decades,...

2012-01-27 14:19:06

Republicans and Democrats are less divided in their attitudes than popularly believed, according to new research. It is exactly those perceptions of polarization, however, that help drive political engagement, researchers say. "American polarization is largely exaggerated," says Leaf Van Boven of the University of Colorado Boulder, especially by people who adopt strong political stances. And when people perceive a large gap between political parties, they may be more motivated to vote....

2012-01-23 15:23:05

Moral imagination is an essential faculty for workers who must overcome the stigmas of ethical conflicts and social rejection associated with certain types of jobs, according to a study carried out at the Universidad Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M). There are some jobs (“dirty work”, in Anglo-Saxon terminology) that, because of their characteristics, produce a certain amount of social rejection towards the people who perform them, due to the fact that they are subjected to moral...

2012-01-18 14:51:00

NEW YORK, Jan. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An article released today by The Quarterly Journal of Economics notes that 90% of Americans give money to charities each year. There is at least one capital campaign to raise $25 million or more underway in virtually every major population center in North America. Smaller capital campaigns are even more numerous, with phone-a-thons, door-to-door drives, and mail solicitations increasing in popularity. Despite the ubiquity of fund-raising, we...

2012-01-03 12:27:13

Use of torture around the world has not diminished but the techniques used have grown more complex and sophisticated, according to new research from Queen Mary, University of London. The study suggests that these emerging forms of torture, which include various types of rape, bestiality and witnessing violent acts, are experienced by people seeking asylum in the UK. In many cases the techniques cause no visible effect but are responsible for a variety of serious mental health problems....

2011-12-20 17:06:00

WASHINGTON, Dec. 20, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The European Commission decided today to extend the list of goods subject to export controls, to prevent their use for capital punishment, torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. As of today, trade of certain anesthetics, such as sodium thiopental, which can be used in lethal injections, to countries that have not yet abolished the death penalty, will be tightly controlled. Furthermore, the scope of the...

2011-12-02 18:29:38

Individuals and courts deal more harshly with people who actively commit harm than with people who willfully allow the same harm to occur. A new study finds that this moral distinction is psychologically automatic. It requires more thought to see each harmful behavior as morally equivalent. People typically say they are invoking an ethical principle when they judge acts that cause harm more harshly than willful inaction that allows that same harm to occur. That difference is even codified...

2011-12-01 22:17:10

Imagine a runaway boxcar heading toward five people who can´t escape its path. Now imagine you had the power to reroute the boxcar onto different tracks with only one person along that route. Would you do it? That´s the moral dilemma posed by a team of Michigan State University researchers in a first-of-its-kind study published in the research journal Emotion. Research participants were put in a three dimensional setting and given the power to kill one person (in this case, a...