One of the main challenges in working with values is that in many situations our behaviour is driven by implicit values that may be very different from our explicit values: what we do looks very different from what we say.

The first two sections of this part of the Reading Guide focus on methods for eliciting implicit values respectively in research and in clinical and training contexts.

Further information on this can be found in More about implicit values in clinical and training contexts

The third section introduces the wide range of established empirical methods available for exploring values more widely. Further information on this can be found in More about established empirical methods

The fourth section looks at strategies for retrieving values-related literature from electronic databases. Further information on this can be found in More about strategies for retrieving values-related literature

Mixed Methods

Empirical and philosophical methods often work well together. Austin, one of the founder figures of the Oxford School, was indeed an advocate of teamwork between philosophers and experts in other disciplines.

Colombo’s Models Project described in the next section is a case in point. It employs empirical social science methods of data collection. But its links with values-based practice are by way of an analytic (ordinary language) philosophical interpretation of its findings.

The empirical methods described in this section of the Reading Guide should thus be read throughout as partners to the philosophical methods covered earlier.



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Values-based Surgical Care

Values-based practice in surgery is an innovative approach to decision making in surgery, linking science with people.


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