Trolleys and Double Effect in Experimental Ethics

In Christoph Luetge, Hannes Rusch & Matthias Uhl (eds.), Experimental Ethics. Palgrave-Macmillan (forthcoming)
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Abstract

I analyse the relationship between the Doctrine of Double Effect and the Trolley Problem: the former offers a solution for the latter only on the premise that killing the one in Bystander at the Switch is permissible. Here I offer both empirical and theoretical arguments against the permissibility of killing the one: firstly, I present data from my own empirical studies according to which the intuition that killing the one is permissible is neither widespread nor stable; secondly, I defend a normative principle according to which killing the one in Bystander at the Switch is not permissible. In conclusion, there just is no trolley problem.

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Ezio Di Nucci
University of Copenhagen

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