Achieving ethically responsible decisions is crucial for the success of biodiversity conservation projects. We adapted the ethical matrix, decision tree, and Bateson's cube to assist in the ethical analysis of complex conservation scenarios by structuring these tools so that they can implement the different value dimensions (environmental, social, and animal welfare) involved in conservation ethics. We then applied them to a case study relative to the decision-making process regarding whether or not to continue collecting biomaterial on the oldest of the two remaining northern white rhinoceroses (Ceratotherium simum cotton:), a functionally extinct subspecies of the white rhinoceros. We used the ethical matrix to gather ethical pros and cons and as a starting point for a participatory approach to ethical decision-making. We used decision trees to compare the different options at stake on the basis of a set of ethical desiderata. We used Bateson's cube to establish a threshold of ethical acceptability and model the results of a simple survey. The application of these tools proved to be pivotal in structuring the decision-making process and in helping reach a shared, reasoned, and transparent decision on the best option from an ethical point of view among those available.

Application of decision tools to ethical analysis in biodiversity conservation

Pierfrancesco Biasetti;Ilaria Pollastri;Alessia Muzzo;Domnic Mijele;Barbara de Mori
2022

Abstract

Achieving ethically responsible decisions is crucial for the success of biodiversity conservation projects. We adapted the ethical matrix, decision tree, and Bateson's cube to assist in the ethical analysis of complex conservation scenarios by structuring these tools so that they can implement the different value dimensions (environmental, social, and animal welfare) involved in conservation ethics. We then applied them to a case study relative to the decision-making process regarding whether or not to continue collecting biomaterial on the oldest of the two remaining northern white rhinoceroses (Ceratotherium simum cotton:), a functionally extinct subspecies of the white rhinoceros. We used the ethical matrix to gather ethical pros and cons and as a starting point for a participatory approach to ethical decision-making. We used decision trees to compare the different options at stake on the basis of a set of ethical desiderata. We used Bateson's cube to establish a threshold of ethical acceptability and model the results of a simple survey. The application of these tools proved to be pivotal in structuring the decision-making process and in helping reach a shared, reasoned, and transparent decision on the best option from an ethical point of view among those available.
2022
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3471299
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