Between Samaritans and States: The Political Ethics of by Jennifer Rubenstein

By Jennifer Rubenstein

This publication presents the 1st book-length, English-language account of the political ethics of large-scale, Western-based humanitarian INGOs, resembling Oxfam, CARE, and medical professionals without boundary lines. those INGOs are frequently both celebrated as 'do-gooding machines' or maligned as incompetents 'on the line to hell'. against this, this booklet indicates the image is extra complicated.

Drawing on political thought, philosophy, and ethics, in addition to unique fieldwork, this e-book indicates that whereas humanitarian INGOs are usually perceived as non-governmental and apolitical, they're in reality occasionally slightly governmental, hugely political, and sometimes 'second-best' actors. accordingly, they face 4 significant moral predicaments: the matter of spattered fingers, the hindrance of the second-best, the cost-effectiveness conundrum, and the ethical motivation trade-off.

This ebook considers what it'll seem like for INGOs to navigate those predicaments in ways in which are as constant as attainable with democratic, egalitarian, humanitarian and justice-based norms. It argues that humanitarian INGOs needs to usually make deep ethical compromises. In deciding on which compromises to make, they need to concentration totally on their total outcomes, in preference to their intentions or the intrinsic price in their actions. yet they need to interpret outcomes expansively,
and no longer restrict themselves to those who are amenable to express cost-benefit research. The publication concludes through explaining the consequences of its 'map' of humanitarian INGO political ethics for person donors to INGOs, and for the way all of us should still conceive of INGOs' position in addressing urgent global
problems.

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