Climate Change and Group Agency

July 6, 2023 - July 7, 2023
Department of Humanities, Social and Political Sciences, ETH Zürich, Switzerland

Villa Hatt
Zürich 8044

This event is available both online and in-person


  • Swiss National Science Foundation


ETH Zurich
Stockholm University
Monash University
University of Groningen
ETH Zurich
Trinity College, Dublin
University of Vienna


ETH Zurich

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The workshop “Climate Change and Group Agency” explores the role groups agents, such as corporations, can and should play in the fight against climate change. In recent decades, a number of philosophers have argued that corporations are moral agents that have the capacity for affective attitudes that are required to reason on the basis of and respond to moral considerations. Others have raised doubt against this possibility; pointing at the ubiquitous instrumental reasoning and the prevailing practice of shareholder governance that undermine moral deliberation and motivation. Behind the backdrop of this controversy, this workshop aims to investigate the material and social conditions that give rise to moral agency in corporations by following two broad strategies. First, it explores the epistemic and motivational role of corporate emotions. Second, it considers how the social and legal framework within which corporations are embedded can be conducive to functional states that can play the role of these emotions.

This workshop will contribute to advances in the intersection of social ontology, corporate and environmental ethics, responsibility, and to questions of corporate reasoning with and on the basis of supererogatory duties.

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July 5, 2023, 12:00am CET

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