Open seminar

How should we make decisions when we’re uncertain about what we ought, morally, to do?

Date: 21 October 2020
Time: 16:00-17:30

Very often we are uncertain about what we ought, morally,to do. We do not know how to weigh the interests of animals against humans, how strong our duties are to improve the lives of distant strangers, or how to think about the ethics of bringing new people into existence. But we still need to act.

This moral uncertainty is of great importance when political decisions are to be made. If we don’t know how to weight the interests of future generations against the current generations, then howshould we act in response to climate change? And if we don’t know how to weigh the interests of distant strangers against compatriots, then how can we know the extent of our duties to the global poor?

Though economists and philosophers have extensively studied the issue of decision-making in the face of uncertainty about mattersof fact, the question of decision-making given fundamental moral uncertainty has been neglected. In the new book Moral Uncertainty, philosophers William MacAskill, Krister Bykvist, and Toby Ord try to fill this gap. They argue that there are rules that govern how one ought to make decisions under moral uncertainty. But which rule one should use depends on the content of one's moral hypotheses.

Join us online for this webinar where the authors of the book discusses the topic of moral uncertainty with moderator Anders Herlitz.

See the seminar live, here

Find the book online at Oxford University Press.

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