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Scientific whaling and how philosophy of science can help break the international deadlock

Coady, D ORCID: 0000-0001-7564-1687, Gogarty, B ORCID: 0000-0002-9494-6598 and McGee, J ORCID: 0000-0002-2093-5896 2018 , 'Scientific whaling and how philosophy of science can help break the international deadlock' , Australian Journal of International Affairs, vol. 72, no. 1 , pp. 49-67 , doi: 10.1080/10357718.2017.1334758.

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Abstract

Despite widespread public interest on the topic of whaling, there isat present relatively little work on how philosophy might contributeto analysis of the status of whaling in international law. Whenphilosophers have looked at the topic of whaling, they haveconfined their attention to a fairly narrow set of ethical questions,such as whether international law should permit certain forms oftraditional indigenous whaling or extend legal rights to whalesthemselves. However, there is another important issue which hasso far been largely neglected by philosophy, even though it is atthe forefront of current international legal disputes over the statusof whaling: the issue of so-called ‘scientific whaling’. This articleconsiders the international legal dispute between Australia, NewZealand and Japan over the latter’s lethal harvesting of whales inthe Southern Ocean, and the recent attempt at resolution by theInternational Court of Justice. On its face, this required that theCourt demarcate ‘scientific’ from ‘unscientific’ activity; however, iteffectively baulked at this task. The authors argue that thisapproach of the Court was unfortunate, and that demarcatingscience from commerce is not only achievable in philosophy, butmight also inform international legal practice. Resolving this issueis important for genuine progress to be made in the currentinternational stand-off over Japanese whaling in the SouthernOcean.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Coady, D and Gogarty, B and McGee, J
Keywords: courts, experts, international law, philosophy, science, whaling
Journal or Publication Title: Australian Journal of International Affairs
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1035-7718
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/10357718.2017.1334758
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 Australian Institute of International Affairs

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