Tagarchief: population ethics

Dual moral theory

Morality always involves two parties: the perpetrator versus the victim, the helper versus the beneficiary, the rights-holder versus the duty-bearer, the moral agent versus the moral patient, or most generally: the decision-makers versus the affected people. Due to the two … Lees verder

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My top ideas of 2021

It is time to look back at 2021, to see what are my most important new insights. My two top picks for this year are both within moral philosophy. Interestingly, those two ideas have the same underlying structure. They both … Lees verder

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The two intrinsic rights that restrict utilitarianism

A more elaborate article about the new theory of complaint-free discounted utilitarianism, which includes everyone having a right to discount utilities of others as long as that does not generate valid complaints, can be read here. Let us start with … Lees verder

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Person-affecting neutral-range utilitarianism

Summary In many examples, such as procreation, animal farming, climate change and catastrophic risks, our choices not only influence the welfare of other sentient beings in the future, but also influence their very existence. To determine what is the best … Lees verder

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The problem of possible populations: animal farming, sustainability, extinction and the repugnant conclusion

A personal note Population ethics is terribly difficult. My personal journey started ten years ago with a very simple theory called ‘average utilitarianism’. This theory is simple enough to express in one line: choose the option that maximizes the average … Lees verder

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An ethical minefield. Stepping from the worst to the best population ethical theories

About ten years ago, during my studies in moral philosophy, I encountered the area of population ethics. It is clearly one of the most tricky areas in ethics, a minefield of very counterintuitive conclusions. But it is also one of … Lees verder

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A game theoretic solution to population ethics

As mentioned previously, population ethics is probably the most important area in moral philosophy for effective altruists who want to do the most good. There are some very serious problems in population ethics that relate to crucial considerations about doing … Lees verder

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Asymmetry in ethical principles

In general, we have to avoid unwanted arbitrariness in ethics. Arbitrariness is closely related to the notion of asymmetry. Symmetry means that an object looks the same after performing a transformation. Consider a perfect sphere with a uniform color. This … Lees verder

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Reducing existential risks or wild animal suffering?

What are the most important focus areas if you want to do the most good in the world? Focus on the current generation or the far future? Focus on human welfare or animal welfare? These are the fundamental cause prioritization … Lees verder

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Why I became a utilitarian

Abstract In this article I explain how a specific utilitarian theory (variance normalized variable critical level rule preference utilitarianism that says we have to choose the situation that maximizes the sum of everyone’s just-noticeable difference normalized self-determined relative utilities) avoids … Lees verder

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