The notion of moral expertise is contested. Some think that there are no such experts, while others think that moral experts do exist, but their expertise are limited.
This article critically assesses the suggestion that members of ethics commissions should be seen as moral experts. The article does so by looking at how different comprehensive doctrines would approach this suggestion.
The article concludes that the suggestion faces significant difficulties regardless of which comprehensive doctrine one subscribes to.
The role of moral experts as members of ethics commissions is a controversial one. Critics argue that such commissions are stacked with people who have a vested interest in the outcome of the deliberations, and that their presence skews the commission’s deliberations in favor of pre-ordained conclusions.
Proponents argue that the inclusion of moral experts on ethics commissions provides a valuable perspective that can help to inform the commission’s deliberations.
In retrospect, the debate over the role of moral experts on ethics commissions is likely to continue for some time. In the meantime, it is helpful to understand the different perspectives on this issue.