Ethical Challenges of Animal Biotechnology : Application of Ben Mepham's Ethical Matrix
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
This thesis examines whether animal biotechnology is compatible with the norms of animal welfare, environment, and public health. For this purpose, it explores two lines of ethical controversy — intrinsic argument and extrinsic argument. The intrinsic argument against biotechnology maintains that it is “objectionable in itself”. On the other hand, according to extrinsic argument animal biotechnology is ethically wrong because it has got negative consequences upon human beings, animals, and environment. However, it is also true that biotechnology (whether animal or agricultural) is one of the means of our living today. We cannot deny or oppose its usefulness all on a sudden. We need to be careful as well as critical in this regard. Therefore, it is an imperative that we select tools for making better assessment of biotechnology. In order to examine the ethical acceptability of animal biotechnology, we need to assess the impact of this technology and its potential effects upon the four interest factors: (i) consumers, (ii) farmers and financiers, (iii) treated organisms, and (iv) environment. In this regard, I have opted for Mepham’s ethical matrix, which is a practical approach for addressing broader policy issues. I think that ethical matrix is such a theory that it can incorporate the demand of science and the multidimensional complexity of it that exists today. Mepham’s ethical matrix can lead one towards rational ethical analysis and weighing and integrating potentially conflicting values in the decision-making process. At the end of this study, I have focused on the application of Mepham’s ethical matrix upon some contexts of animal biotechnology, such as bST, transgenic animal, and xenotransplantation. Finally, through the analysis, I came to the conclusion that none of the ethical tools or theories can materially represent the problems to facilitate the ethical debate about animal biotechnology.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 38 p.
Animal Biotechnology, Ethical matrix, Intrinsic Argument, Extrinsic Argument, Justice
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-60923ISRN: LIU-CTE-AE-EX--09/06-SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-60923DiVA: diva2:359860
Nordgren, Anders, Professor
Collste, Goran, Professor