Conference (Call for papers): 2nd International Conference “Economic Philosophy”, 9-10 October, 2014, BETA (Strasbourg, France)

The 2nd International Conference “Economic Philosophy” will be held at the University of Strasbourg from 9th to 10th October 2014. This conference is organized by the Bureau d’Economie Théorique et Appliquée (BETA, UMR 7522 of CNRS). As many of you may know, both the creation of the Philosophy-Economics Network and the organisation of a biannual Conference dedicated to the economic philosophy were two complementary initiatives proposed during the first Lille Economic Philosophy Conference in June 2012 (for more information concerning the creation of the Philosophy-Economics Network see our tab “About the network“).

This international conference will host sessions on the theme “Oneself and the Other”, but any paper or session which addresses the Philosophy of Economics is welcome.

The Philosophy of Economics primarily considers the economic agent as a moral subject. Economics, however, has long overlooked the agent’s moral—that is to say, reasonable—dimension, to focus instead on the strictly rational. The economic agent refers to “himself” (herself) in terms of his desire and passions, yet also refers to others besides himself. For the rational economic agent, what is the nature of this relationship with the Other? And should it not be understood as undergoing a transformation once we come to consider the economic agent as a reasonable being? Through what process does the Other pass from being an instrument at the disposal of a rational agent to being an end in itself for a moral subject? In other words, how does another become “anOther”?

In the act of producing, the economic agent has friends, masters and subordinates. The acts of exchanging, sharing and borrowing all involve partners. When an economic agent consumes, through the use of goods and services, he depends on other agents of the same kind. Could we claim, then, that in each of these actions there is an encounter with the Other? And would such an encounter not imply, moreover, an acknowledgment of the Other as “my equal”, irrespective of how different they may be? Deprived of the qualities of a moral subject, is the economic agent defined by Economics in a manner sufficient to be seen as a consciousness capable of discovering something within himself, or as a subjectivity capable of experiencing the pain of envy?

Such questions, with which current research is increasingly concerned, lead us to consider the philosophical dimensions of the science of Economics—they lead us, in other words, towards a re-examination of certain fundamental notions, and to a re-reading of certain great authors. It is precisely the study of these notions and these authors which the Colloquium on the Philosophy of Economics invites you to join. Presentations could address the following themes:

– The “just” and the “good” in the economy
– The passions which constitute the economic agent, from Adam Smith to the present
– The role of emotions in economic behaviour
– Economic rationalities
– The Kantian tradition and the question of “the Other”
– Justice and institutions
– Economics and religion
– Reason and the Other
– The question of social preferences
– Evolution of individual preferences: theory and experiments
– The Other and the utilitarian tradition
– Altruism and reciprocity
– Gift and counter-gift
– …

Proposals for papers in the form of abstracts of approximately 500 words, in French or English, must be submitted no later than January 31st, 2014 via the website of the conference:

Proposals for complete sessions are also welcome; they should contain a title, a summary of each of the proposed papers, and the name of the session chair (3 papers per session).

January 31st, 2014: submission deadline
March 31st, 2014: notification to applicants
August 31st, 2014: full paper submission deadline

A selection of papers will be published in a peer-reviewed journal.


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