SOPhiA 2020

Salzburgiense Concilium Omnibus Philosophis Analyticis

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Programme - Talk

Moral and Scientific Expertise
(Affiliated Workshop, English)

When it comes to moral expertise our cultural and political practice do not go hand in hand with the philosophical debate. While it is common to refer to members of ethics committees as moral experts, who due their professional training in moral philosophy have an advantage over laypersons, the ongoing philosophical debates on the practical roles and expectation, political legitimacy and even metaphysical possibility of moral expertise call the idea of objective moral arbiters into question (Singer 1972, Dietrich 2012, Archard 2019). Curiously, the same can not be said about scientific expertise. Only few scientific relativists would doubt the possibility of scientific expertise on principal. The overwhelming majority of philosophers of science agree that proper scientific and methodological training in combination with a solid institutional framework justifies laypersons trust when it comes to the opinion of scientists on scientific questions. The talks in this workshop address this tension known as the asymmetry problem for moral expertise and connected questions.
The talks in this workshop address questions like the following:
- What exactly distinguishes moral expertise from scientific expertise from an epistemological point of view? Can we disentangle moral expertise from moral realism or any particular stance on the ontology of moral facts?
- Is moral deference, which is often considered morally problematic, categorically different from scientific / epistemic deference, which is often seen as unproblematic?
- What role can moral experts play in moral deliberation, e.g. in clinical ethics, in corporate consulting and policy-making?
- How can we warrant trust in moral experts? Do we need a moral framework that provides guidelines for moral experts similar to guidelines for scientific experts?

Organisation: Alexander Christian & Julia Mirkin (Düsseldorf)

Chair: Alexander Christian & Julia Mirkin
Time: 16:15-20:00, 3 September 2019 (Thursday)
Location: SR 1.004

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Testability and Meaning deco