Arché Research Centre, University of St Andrews
Time: 30th June – 1st July, 2012
Location: School II, University of St Andrews


Cian Dorr (Oxford)
Alvin Goldman (Rutgers)
Jennifer Nagel (Toronto)
Jonathan Weinberg (Arizona)
Tim Williamson (Oxford)


To register for the workshop you need to pay the delegate fee at the online shop for the workshop. The costs for the workshop are £32 per delegate per day of the conference which includes lunch and tea/coffee in the morning and afternoon. On the online shop you can choose to pay for both days or just one day, and you can also choose to sign-up for the conference dinner. For more details and for the link to the online shop see the workshop webpage (

Date: July 3-4 2010
Location: The Informatics Conference Centre, George Square, Edinburgh

Talbot Brewer (University of Virginia)
John Cottingham (University of Reading)
Jonathan Dancy (University of Reading/ Texas)
Brad Hooker (University of Reading)
Edward Harcourt (Keble College, Oxford)
James Lenman (University of Sheffield)
Tim Mulgan (University of St Andrews)
Michael Ridge (University of Edinburgh) & Sean McKeever (Davidson College, NC, USA)
Tom Sorell (University of Birmingham)
Sergio Tenenbaum (University of Toronto)
Alan Thomas (University of Kent)

Jointly organised by the Philosophy Departments, The Open University and The University of Edinburgh, with support from The Mind Association, The Royal Institute of Philosophy, and The Scots Philosophical Club

Surveying Loose Talk
By Antti Kauppinen

This is the first in a series of posts about recent work in experimental philosophy. I will be examining some persistent general issues with the different experimental approaches by way of looking at particular papers in some detail. I’ll begin with ‘Two Conceptions of Subjective Experience’ by Justin Sytsma and Edouard Machery. The problem that the study highlights is that everyday language is often vague, ambiguous, or just spoken loosely, so that we can’t draw conclusions about people’s concepts just by looking at what they say in response to prompts. We first need to tease out just what people mean, and this can’t be done in a survey that doesn’t allow for a back-and-forth between the researcher and the subject. This would be a problem even if experimentalists solved all the other problems raised by myself and others.

Many of you will be familiar with the Moral Sense Test, which has produced some valuable data on ordinary people’s intuitions about trolley cases and related dilemmas. Eric Schwitzgebel, a philosopher of mind (who does fascinating work on the unreliability of first person judgments) and Fiery Cushman, from Marc Hauser’s lab at Harvard, have now designed a version of the test especially for philosophers. They want to be able to compare the responses of people with graduate degrees in philosophy to those of the folk. I encourage everyone to take the test; it shouldn’t take more than fifteen minutes.

I’d like to draw your attention to the following:

The UT-Austin philosophy department is pleased to announce a week-long
graduate student workshop on philosophical methodology, August 12 –
August 16.

Possible workshop subtopics include (but are not limited to)
intuition, conceptual analysis, reflective equilibrium, reduction, and
ontological commitment.

Already confirmed speakers include Julia Driver (Washington University/St. Louis), Marc Moffett (Wyoming), Roy Sorensen (Washington University/St. Louis), Ernest Sosa (Rutgers), and a number of UT faculty.

We hope to accept around 10 outside graduate student participants. If
you are interested in applying, please see our website for details:

I’ve been looking through the recent issue of Analysis. It has 13 papers, of which one is on meta-ethics, and there’s nothing in either normative or applied ethics. This is a fairly typical showing. There are occasional papers on free will (which is a distinct topic, combining metaphysics and ethics), but very little ethics as such, and (my focus here) hardly any normative or, indeed, applied ethics. Why? And why does this matter?

Appiah Reading Group
By S. Matthew Liao

experimentsinethics.jpg Following the successful Kamm Reading Group, Ethics Etc will shortly be holding another reading group on Professor Kwame Anthony Appiah’s book, Experiments in Ethics. Professor Appiah is Laurance S. Rockefeller University Professor of Philosophy at the Center for Human Values at Princeton University and the current President of the American Philosophical Association. The content of his book is as follows:

1. Introduction: The Waterless Moat
2. The Case against Character
3. The Case against Intuition
4. The Varieties of Moral Experience
5. The Ends of Ethics

Professor Jason Stanley (Rutgers University) has recently won the American Philosophical Association Book Prize for his book, Knowledge and Practical Interests. In this book, Stanely also tests and develops his theories and principles by means of intuitive judgments about cases. Here is a case from the book:

[Bank Case 1:] Hannah and her wife Sarah are driving home on a Friday afternoon. They plan to stop at the bank on the way home to deposit their paychecks. Since they have an impending bill coming due, and very little in their account, it is very important that they deposit their paychecks by Saturday. But neither Hannah nor Sarah is aware of the impending bill, nor of the paucity of available funds. Looking at the lines [i.e., at the long queue at the bank], Hannah says to Sarah, ‘I know the bank will be open tomorrow, since I was there just two weeks ago on Saturday morning. So we can deposit our paychecks tomorrow morning.’ (p. 5)