Contractualism and Beyond

November 8, 2024 - November 9, 2024
McGill University



  • Canada Research Chairs Program


University of Western Ontario
Princeton University
McGill University
State University of New York at Binghamton


McGill University

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Workshop: Contractualism and Beyond

November 8-9, 2024, McGill University, Montreal

Since T.M. Scanlon put forward his version of contractualism in What We Owe to Each Other (1998), a large number of philosophers have investigated its theoretical features and argued for or against contractualism. The research team Value Theory and the Philosophy of Public Policy (PI: Iwao Hirose) is pleased to announce a two-day workshop on contractualism, Contractualism and Beyond. The aim of this workshop is to identify major theoretical challenges for contractualism and potential solutions to those challenges.

Day 1 (November 8) is devoted to a symposium of Elizabeth Finneron-Burns's (Western) recent monograph What We Owe to Future People (Oxford University Press, 2024). Confirmed commentators are: Anja Karnein (Binghamton), Johann Frick (UC Berkeley), and Iwao Hirose (McGill). Day 2 (November 9) will be presentations of submitted abstracts.

We invite submissions of abstracts on any aspect of Scanlonian contractualism and its variants: for or against, political or metaethical. There will be at least four slots for presentation of submitted abstracts. Abstracts should be max one A4 page (PDF file only), prepared for blind review, suitable for a 35-minute presentation. Abstracts should state (1) the main result(s) of your analysis and (2) rough outline of your analysis. The abstracts submission page will open on June 1, 2024. Speakers of accepted abstracts will be offered (a) workshop dinner and (b) 3 nights of accommodation in downtown Montreal (in the case of multi-authored paper, the corresponding author only).

We welcome and encourage submissions from members of underrepresented groups such as (but not limited to) women and Indigenous persons. A limited number of travel subsidy (airfare up to C$1,000) may be available for speakers of accepted abstract, who are from underrepresented groups. If you consider you are a member of underrepresented groups, please indicate the intention of applying to a travel subsidy in the "comment" box when you submit an abstract. Any information you may provide in the comment box will be treated as strictly confidential. Attendance is free but requires registration as the space is limited. The registration page will open in October 2024. If you are interested to act as a session chair (e.g., to secure your travel fund), please indicate your interest in the comment box on the registration page.

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November 1, 2024, 9:00am EST

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