John Z. Sadler
Values are action-guiding dispositions that are subject to praise or blame, and as such are fundamental in making choices and taking action in any human context, including clinical practice and research. The first half of the chapter reviews the contemporary role of philosophical value theory in understanding the clinical process of diagnosis and the development of formal classifications of psychopathology. The second half of the chapter discusses the kinds of values evident in these areas and raises unanswered questions for the field. Despite two decades of progress in understanding the key role of values in clinical and classificatory work, the open disclosure and negotiation of values in psychiatry remains a novel idea for many, and psychiatric and philosophical research into the area of values and diagnosis/classification is only in its infancy.