CFP: Policing, Policy, and Philosophy Initiative (3PI) Virtual Symposium

Submission deadline: November 30, 2023

Conference date(s):
March 1, 2024

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This event is online

Topic areas


Many debates over policing are, at their heart, questions about ethics, justice, and politics. What are the professional and moral responsibilities of police in a democratic society? What rules should govern officers in their use of force and other aspects of their jobs? How do current forms of policing contribute to systemic injustice? What does accountability mean in the context of policing? What are the most promising strategies for promoting public safety consistent with justice—and do they include police? Philosophy, in conversation with other fields, offers tools to advance our understanding of policing and what role it should play.

The Policing, Policy, and Philosophy Initiative (3PI) will explore these and related questions at its inaugural symposium on March 1, 2024. This virtual event aims to showcase research at the intersection of policing and philosophy, with particular interest in work that has direct relevance to policy. Beyond offering opportunities for feedback on in-progress work and learning about new research, the symposium looks to build connections and community among scholars with philosophical interests in policing. Funding for the symposium is provided by the American Philosophical Association, Penn State Department of Philosophy, and Penn State Rock Ethics Institute.

Papers accepted for the symposium will be considered for the 3PI Paper Prize, which comes with a $1,000 award. The prize committee will evaluate papers based on their originality in advancing philosophical debates on policing and their skill in translating insights from philosophy into concrete implications for policy. The paper awarded the 3PI Paper Prize will receive consideration for publication in the Journal of Public Policy

Faculty, postdocs, graduate students, and independent scholars with advanced degrees are eligible to participate in the symposium and can apply by (1) submitting a paper and/or (2) requesting to be a panel discussant. Papers submitted for consideration should be anonymous and no more than 3,500 words (excluding abstract, notes, and references). Discussants will receive a small honorarium in appreciation of their service. To apply for either role, please visit the following link and apply by November 30, 2023: decisions will be sent in January 2024.

About 3PI: The Policing, Policy, and Philosophy Initiative (3PI) draws on tools from philosophy to understand policing’s role in society and inform policy. Through its events and resources, 3PI fosters collaboration among philosophers and ethicists, highlights research in philosophy on policing, and connects scholars with policymakers and community leaders. 3PI is supported by funding from the American Philosophical Association and Rock Ethics Institute at Penn State, where it is based. For more information about 3PI, visit: If you have questions about 3PI or its upcoming symposium, please email [email protected].

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