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Lay beliefs in moral expertise

Schmittat, Susanne M., Burgmer, Pascal (2020) Lay beliefs in moral expertise. Philosophical Psychology, 33 (2). pp. 283-308. ISSN 0951-5089. (doi:10.1080/09515089.2020.1719053) (KAR id:73076)

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Compared to expertise in other domains, moral expertise remains a controversial topic. The current research employed a folk-psychological approach to explore which characteristics laypeople consider to be essential for moral expertise. Study 1 indicates that laypeople associate moral experts with a virtuous character and other-oriented behavior. Formal qualifications such as education and training are seen as less important for moral experts compared to other kinds of experts (Study 2a). However, professional judges – suggested by laypeople as moral experts - neither attributed the suggested characteristics of a moral expert to themselves, nor do they strongly believe in the existence of moral expertise (Study 2b). Finally, Study 3 adopted a more confirmatory approach and substantiated the key finding that laypeople expect moral experts to be rather virtuous than formally qualified, whereas for medical experts––as a comparison group––the reversed pattern emerged. Additionally, the difference between both characteristics was smaller for a moral than for medical experts. Taken together, laypeople seem to expect a more complex and balanced set of skills from a moral expert than from experts in other domains: moral experts need not only know about what is moral, but they also need to be moral.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/09515089.2020.1719053
Projects: [UNSPECIFIED] Lay Beliefs in Moral Expertise
Uncontrolled keywords: moral expertise, lay beliefs, folk psychology, morality, formal qualification, virtue
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Pascal Burgmer
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2019 14:46 UTC
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2021 23:00 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Burgmer, Pascal:
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