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Ethics: An enabler of public policy?

Lecture by Robert E. Goodin, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the Australian National University and Professor of Government at the University of Essex
Commentary by Edda Müller, Chair of Transparency International Deutschland e.V.

Ethics is most often regarded as a constraint, limiting what we can do.  But ethics can also be an 'enabler', helping policymakers secure compliance with the policies that they promulgate. Basing policies on ethical principles eases the burden on the public of knowing what policies require of them.  Framing policies in this way makes the public at large more disposed to obey them, by priming them to think of their own ethically-based reasons for action.  Basing policies on ethical principles also assists policymakers in securing the cooperation of other potential veto players in the implementation process, by creating cooperative norms and a culture of trust among powerful actors who are prepared to bind themselves to those ethical principles in a reciprocal manner.

Lecture: Robert E. Goodin, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, Australian National University; Professor of Government, University of Essex Commentary: Edda Müller, Chair, Transparency International Deutschland e.V.

Lecture by Robert E. Goodin