Social context and stakeholders' values in building diagnostic systems

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Beginning with an acknowledgment of the scientific aspects of developing classifications for psychopathology, this essay describes how diagnostic classifications (DCs) also function as public policy. Using the methods of philosophical analysis and a brief review of pertinent literature, the paper describes the regulatory and prescriptive functions of official DCs like the DSM and ICD manuals, functions that de facto serve as public policies. This background then provides for a comparison of the values involved in good science alongside the values involved in good public policy. Important areas of overlap are described, and these point to areas, relevant to stakeholders' interest, worth considering in developing future DCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-200
Number of pages4
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2005


  • Diagnostic classification
  • Politics
  • Stakeholders
  • Values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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