CFP: Synthese: Virtue Theory of Mathematical Practices

Submission deadline: October 1, 2019

Topic areas


Synthese topical collection: Virtue Theory of Mathematical Practices 

Guest Editors: Andrew Aberdein, Colin Jakob Rittberg, Fenner Stanley Tanswell

Virtue theory has an illustrious history as one of the most prominent philosophical traditions, and in the wake of the recent renewed focus on human practices virtue theory once again provides powerful frameworks, tools and insights. Work in such diverse fields as ethics, the philosophy of science, epistemology, philosophy of law, political theory, aesthetics, and argumentation theory shows that virtue theory permits normative discourse without imposing overly rigid criteria. Within the philosophy of mathematics, and mathematics itself, attention to virtues has a variety of sources: theoretical virtues have been put forward both to analyse the practice of proof and to justify axioms, and ethical virtues have been offered as a basis for understanding the social dimensions of mathematical practice. Indeed, some authors have advocated virtue epistemology as the correct epistemology for mathematics (and perhaps even as the basis for progress in the metaphysics of mathematics). In this topical collection we aim to consolidate and encourage this trend in the philosophy of mathematics.

We invite contributions which study mathematics and mathematical practices from a virtue perspective. We encourage, amongst others, submissions that
·       engage with the social dimensions of mathematics in virtue terms;
·       address the application of virtue epistemology to mathematics;
·       investigate the ethical considerations of mathematical practice in a virtue framework;
·       discuss specific virtues or vices of mathematics (or mathematicians);
·       explore historical usage of virtue terminology in mathematical contexts;
·       or provide accounts in terms of virtue of the objects of mathematical enquiry, such as theorems, proofs, or definitions.

The deadline for submission is 1 October 2019.

Papers should be submitted via Synthese’s editorial manager at

When the system asks you to “Choose Article Type”, please scroll down in the pull-down menu to “S.I. : Virtue Theory of Mathematical Practices”.

Before submitting your paper, be sure to carefully read the journal’s ‘Instructions for Authors’ page at

For further information, please contact one of the guest editors: Andrew Aberdein (, Colin Rittberg (, or Fenner Tanswell (

Supporting material

Add supporting material (slides, programs, etc.)