Social Philosophy and Policy


Upcoming Conference: December 2017

Moral Responsibility: The Next Generation

The 2017 Social Philosophy & Policy Tucson conference will help to define future philosophical study of moral responsibility. Authors have been invited to develop novel approaches to questions in the field, while at the same time addressing the state of research in moral responsibility today.

Current approaches to questions of moral responsibility take several distinct forms. Philosophers like T. M. Scanlon may think of moral responsibility as falling squarely within the domain of first-order moral theory: blameworthiness results from impaired relationships with others. A second group focuses on presuppositions of agency as embedded in reactive attitudes. Here, the possession of agency-capacities is especially important. Yet others take a “bottom up” approach to theorizing about moral responsibility: metaphysical questions ought to be understood independently of the nature of moral responsibility, but some sort of free agency is required for moral responsibility.

These three ideas have shaped research in the field in recent years. In part, this conference aims to highlight some of the philosophers who will define the next generation of thought on moral responsibility. By bringing these scholars and luminaries in the field together, we hope to create a productive and stimulating weekend. Papers from this conference will be featured in the summer 2019 issue of Social Philosophy & Policy. The guest editor for this issue is Michael McKenna, Keith Lehrer Chair of Philosophy at the University of Arizona.

Please register to attend this year's conference or contact us with any additional questions.