"The accident of where one is born is just that, an accident; any human being might have been born in any nation"
Martha Nussbaum, 'Patriotism and Cosmopolitanism' in For Love of Country (Beacon Press, 2002)

Wednesday, 28 April 2010


I'm currently in the process of moving my blog to my main website (www.megankime.net). This site will remain as an archive but I won't be posting anything new here from now on.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009


Registration for this year's British Society for Ethical Theory conference is now open.

BSET 2009 -- a three-day residential conference
University of Reading: 13 - 15 July 2009.

Keynote Addresses

"Pleasure, Desire, and Practical Reason"- James Lenman (Sheffield)
"Intention, Permissibility, Terrorism, and War"- Jeff McMahan (Rutgers)

Submitted Papers

"Objective versus Subjective Moral Oughts"- Krister Bykvist (Oxford)
"Practical Bracketing"- Garrett Cullity (Adelaide)
"Truth and Error in Morality"- Dale Dorsey (Kansas)
"Moral Blameworthiness and the Reactive Attitudes"- Leonard Kahn (Calgary)
"Owning Up and Lowering Down: The Power of Apology"- Adrienne Martin (Pennsylvania)
"Shapelessness and the Thick"- Deborah Roberts (Reading)
"Second-Order Equality and Levelling Down"- Re'em Segev (Hebrew, Jerusalem)
"Non-monotonicity and Moral Particularism"- Alan Thomas (Kent)
"Cynicism and Morality"- Samantha Vice (Rhodes)

Thursday, 2 April 2009

CFP: Manchester Green Political Theory Workshop

Workshops in Political Theory Sixth Annual Conference
Manchester Metropolitan University
2-4 September 2009

Conveners: Stijn Neuteleers (K.U.Leuven, Belgium), Corey MacIver
(University of Oxford, UK)

The management of environmental problems and the rise of the environmental movement pose significant challenges for contemporary political philosophy. These challenges can be found both on a global level and on a local level. At the global level, for instance, climate change is one of the major issues in real-life international politics and has induced a growing debate on the ethics of climate change (global distributive justice, intergenerational justice, etc.). At the local policy level, we are confronted, on the one hand, with the conflict of environmental values with other values such as economic growth and justice. On the other hand, we have to deal with conflicts among environmental values themselves (biodiversity, restoration, wilderness, etc.). Our political and economic instruments and theories have difficulties to cope with these challenges e.g. cost-benefit analysis, value of privacy, discount rates, aggregative models of democracy, etc. The broad field of political philosophy and the environment tries to provide answers to these challenges.
The workshop aims to cover a broad range of green political theory topics such as:
- Ethics and politics of climate change
- Democracy and the environment
- Public policy and the environment
- Environmental citizenship
- Environmental justice
- Green economics
- Environmental decision-making

If you would like to present a paper at this workshop, please submit an abstract of 300-500 words (or a full paper) to stijn.neuteleers@econ.kuleuven.be and corey.maciver@nuffield.ox.ac.uk by April 30, 2008.

Practical information (registration, fees, etc.) can be found on the conference website.

Carnegie Council Video Webcasts

The Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs have announced that they will be making their upcoming events available as live video webcasts. The programme for April is as follows:

April 2, 5:30-7:00 PM EST
Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa
Dambisa Moyo

April 6, 8:00-9:15 AM EST
God Is Back: How the Global Revival of Faith Is Changing the World
John Micklethwait, Adrian Wooldridge

April 7, 8:00-9:15 AM EST
The Fat Tail: The Power of Political Knowledge for Strategic Investing
Ian Bremmer

April 9, 12:00-2:00 PM EST
Restoring Trust in the Global Financial System
Thomas Donaldson, Neal Flieger, Stephen Jordan, Seamus McMahon, Christian Menegatti

April 20, 5:30-7:00 PM EST
Prospects for U.S.-Russia Relations
H.E. Mr. Sergey Kislyak

April 22, 5:30-7:00 PM EST
Economic Crisis: A National and International Perspective
Ray Epping, Steven Greenhouse

April 29, 8:00-9:15 AM EST
The Crisis of Islamic Civilization
Ali A. Allawi

If you cannot watch these events live, go to the Carnegie Council website for videos, audios, and transcripts of past events, or download them as podcasts.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

CFP: The Ethics of Climate Change

Call For Papers:

The Ethics of Climate Change: Intergenerational Justice and the Global Challenge

October 30th-31st, 2009, Clayton Hall, University of Delaware.

Deadline for submissions: June 15th 2009.

Keynote Speakers:

John Broome, White's Professor of Moral Philosophy, Oxford University

Kristin Shrader-Frechette, O'Neill Family Professor, Notre Dame University

Robert L. Nadeau, Professor of English, George Mason University

For further information see detailed CFP here

Open University Ethics Centre Public Lectures

The Open University Ethics Centre Public Lectures 2009

Integrity in Public Life

6th May - Dr John Githongo: The Paradox of Two Recessions
John Githongo, the Kenyan anti-corruption campaigner now working as Senior Advisor - Advocacy, World Vision UK, will consider some of the scandals that have come to light as the economic tide has gone out in European business. He will compare the apparent paradox whereby economic upturn and democratic recession have gone together in Africa.

20th May - Lord Butler of Brockwell: Integrity and Politics
Robin Butler will draw on his experience as a previous head of the Civil Service, and lead author of the Butler Report, to discuss the ethical pitfalls facing politicians and civil servants, and how to avoid them.

27th May - Professor John Cottingham: Integrity and Fragmentation
Professor John Cottingham (University of Reading) will argue that we are harmed by living in a compartmentalised culture. Our institutions are manned by specialists who have mastered a particular field, but are not expected to form a view of the whole. Yet the classical ideal of the unity of the virtues suggests that people cannot live well unless their activities are integrated into a meaningful structure, informed not just by narrow technical expertise but by an overall vision of the good for humankind. We need this idea today.

17th June - Baroness O'Neill: Trustworthiness, Accountability and Character
Onora O'Neill, cross-bench peer and President of the British Academy, focuses on the place of trust in public life, and explores what we should take as evidence of trustworthiness. Character, codes of conduct and formal systems of accountability can all be helpful for judging trustworthiness, but what can we do when they don't provide enough evidence?

These free lunchtime lectures are open to all and will be hosted at St Bartholomew the Great, West Smithfield, London from 12.50 - 2pm. Click here for directions.

Admission is free but demand may be high for seats: please contact m.leroux@open.ac.uk to reserve your place at the lecture(s) you wish to attend.

Further inquiries to t.chappell@open.ac.uk

Goodin Lecture

The 2009 Edmund Burke Lecture in Practical Philosophy
delivered by Prof. Robert E. Goodin, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Social & Political Theory at the Australian National University
with a response by Dr. Cillian McBride, Lecturer in Political Theory at Queen's University Belfast

Date and Time: Wednesday 22nd April, 6pm
Venue: J.M. Synge Lecture Theatre, Arts Building (TCD, College Green)

The lecture is free and all are welcome to attend.

For further information download the poster or contact jurgen.dewispelaere@tcd.ie

Jurgen De Wispelaere
Editor, Basic Income Studies
Department of Philosophy
School of Social Sciences and Philosophy
Trinity College

College Green, Dublin 2, IrelandTel.: +353 1 896 3136, URL

Guardian Human Rights Series

I've just come across an interesting series of essays on the Guardian website: 'Deconstructing rights' by Costas Douzinas, Professor of Law at Birkbeck College:

"Are human rights a barrier against domination and oppression or the ideological gloss of an emerging empire? Law professor Costas Douzinas traces the history and theory of rights, probing the paradoxes they offer in contemporary debates, including the questions of universalism, humanitarianism and individual versus collective rights."