Population Ethics

Edited by Johan E. Gustafsson (University of York, University of Gothenburg)
View topic on PhilPapers for more information
Related categories

40 found
Order:
More results on PhilPapers
  1. added 2019-09-14
    Varför Tännsjö bör bli vegetarian.Simon Rosenqvist - 2014 - Filosofisk Tidskrift 35 (2):33-35.
    Jag argumenterar för att Torbjörn Tännsjö borde anse det fel att äta kött. Därför borde han bli vegetarian. Anledningen till detta är en artikel, "Why we ought to accept the repugnant conclusion", som Tännsjö publicerade 2002 i tidskriften Utilitas.
    Remove from this list   Download  
    Translate
     
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  2. added 2019-08-20
    A Fixed-Population Problem for the Person-Affecting Restriction.Jacob M. Nebel - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    According to the person-affecting restriction, one distribution of welfare can be better than another only if there is someone for whom it is better. Extant problems for the person-affecting restriction involve variable-population cases, such as the nonidentity problem, which are notoriously controversial and difficult to resolve. This paper develops a fixed-population problem for the person-affecting restriction. The problem reveals that, in the presence of incommensurable welfare levels, the person-affecting restriction is incompatible with minimal requirements of impartial beneficence even in fixed-population (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  3. added 2019-05-20
    Adding Happy People.Theron Pummer - 2016 - In David Edmonds (ed.), Philosophers Take on the World. Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press. pp. 236-239.
    I very briefly sketch two arguments for the claim that we have significant moral reason to ‘add happy people’ (that is, bring into existence people with lives that are well worth living), independently of any effects on those already existing.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  4. added 2019-03-17
    Malthus’s War on Poverty as Moral Reform.Sergio Volodia Marcello Cremaschi - 2013 - CRIS - Bulletin of the Centre for Research and Interdisciplinary Studies, The Journal of Prague College 9:43-54.
    The paper aims at finding a way out of deadlocks in Malthus scholarship concerning his relationship to utilitarianism. The main claim is that Malthus viewed his own population theory and political economy as Hifsdisziplinen to moral and political philosophy, that is, empirical enquiries required in order to be able to pronounce justified value judgments on such matters as the Poor Laws. On the other hand, Malthus’s population theory and political economy were no value-free science and his policy advice – far (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  5. added 2019-03-08
    Overpopulation and the Quality of Life.Derek Parfit - 1986 - In Peter Singer (ed.), Applied Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 145-164.
    How many people should there be? Can there be overpopulation: too many people living? I shall present a puzzling argument about these questions, show how this argument can be strengthened, then sketch a possible reply.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   30 citations  
  6. added 2019-02-21
    Spectrum Arguments and Hypersensitivity.Theron Pummer - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (7):1729-1744.
    Larry Temkin famously argues that what he calls spectrum arguments yield strong reason to reject Transitivity, according to which the ‘all-things-considered better than’ relation is transitive. Spectrum arguments do reveal that the conjunctions of independently plausible claims are inconsistent with Transitivity. But I argue that there is very strong independent reason to reject such conjunctions of claims, and thus that the fact that they are inconsistent with Transitivity does not yield strong reason to reject Transitivity.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  7. added 2019-01-14
    No Harm Done? An Experimental Approach to the Non-Identity Problem.Matthew Kopec & Justin P. Bruner - manuscript
    A driving force behind much of the literature on the non-identity problem is the widely shared intuition that actions or policies that change who comes into existence don't, as a result, lose their morally problematic features. We hypothesize that this intuition isn’t entirely shared by the general public, which might have widespread implications concerning how to best motivate public support for large-scale, identity-affecting policies like those involved in climate change mitigation. To test our hypothesis, we ran a behavioural economic experiment, (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  8. added 2018-05-21
    Imprecise Lexical Superiority and the (Slightly Less) Repugnant Conclusion.James Fanciullo - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (8):2103-2117.
    Recently, Derek Parfit has offered a novel solution to the “Repugnant Conclusion” that compared with the existence of many people whose quality of life would be very high, there is some much larger number of people whose existence would be better but whose lives would be barely worth living. On this solution, qualitative differences between two populations will often entail that the populations are merely “imprecisely” comparable. According to Parfit, this fact allows us to avoid the Repugnant Conclusion without violating (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  9. added 2018-04-16
    Population and Having Children Now.Jan Narveson - 2017 - Journal of Practical Ethics 5 (2):49-61.
    This paper aims to state the obvious – the commonsense, rational approach to child-producing. We have no general obligation to promote either the “general happiness” or the equalization of this and that. We have children if we want them, if their life prospects are decent – and if we can afford them, which is a considerable part of their life prospects being OK – and provided that in doing so we do not inflict injury on others. It’s extremely difficult to (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  10. added 2017-12-02
    An Intrapersonal Addition Paradox.Jacob M. Nebel - 2019 - Ethics 129 (2):309-343.
    I present a new argument for the repugnant conclusion. The core of the argument is a risky, intrapersonal analogue of the mere addition paradox. The argument is important for three reasons. First, some solutions to Parfit’s original puzzle do not obviously generalize to the intrapersonal puzzle in a plausible way. Second, it raises independently important questions about how to make decisions under uncertainty for the sake of people whose existence might depend on what we do. And, third, it suggests various (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  11. added 2017-12-01
    History And Persons.Guy Kahane - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (1):162-187.
    The non-identity problem is usually considered in the forward-looking direction but a version of it also applies to the past, due to the fact that even minor historical changes would have affected the whole subsequent sequence of births, dramatically changing who comes to exist next. This simple point is routinely overlooked by familiar attitudes and evaluative judgments about the past, even those of sophisticated historians. I shall argue, however, that it means that when we feel sadness about some historical tragedy, (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  12. added 2017-10-10
    A Good Exit: What to Do About the End of Our Species?Toby Handfield - 2018 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 15 (3):272-297.
    We know that Homo sapiens will not exist forever. Given this, how should our species end? What are the reasons, if any, to delay our extinction? In this paper, I show that the pre-eminent reasons which favour prolonging the existence of the species are partial: they will arise from the particular attachments and projects of the final few generations. While there may also be impartial reasons to prolong the species, these reasons are liable, with time, to reverse their valence: we (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  13. added 2017-07-08
    Climate Change and Optimum Population.Hilary Greaves - manuscript
    Overpopulation is often identified as one of the key drivers of climate change. Further, it is often thought that the mechanism behind this is obvious: 'more people means more greenhouse gas emissions'. However, in light of the fact that climate change depends most closely on cumulative emissions rather than on emissions rates, the relationship between population size and climate change is more subtle than this. Reducing the size of instantaneous populations can fruitfully be thought of as spreading out a fixed (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  14. added 2017-07-08
    Discounting Future Health.Hilary Greaves - forthcoming - In Emanuel Norheim (ed.), Global health priority-setting: Cost-effectiveness and beyond. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
    In carrying out cost-benefit or cost-effective analysis, a discount rate should be applied to some kinds of future benefits and costs. It is controversial, though, whether future health is in this class. I argue that one of the standard arguments for discounting (from diminishing marginal returns) is inapplicable to the case of health, while another (favouring a pure rate of time preference) is unsound in any case. However, there are two other reasons that might support a positive discount rate for (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  15. added 2017-07-08
    Moral Uncertainty About Population Ethics.Hilary Greaves & Toby Ord - forthcoming - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy.
    Given the deep disagreement surrounding population axiology, one should remain uncertain about which theory is best. However, this uncertainty need not leave one neutral about which acts are better or worse. We show that as the number of lives at stake grows, the Expected Moral Value approach to axiological uncertainty systematically pushes one towards choosing the option preferred by the Total and Critical Level views, even if one’s credence in those theories is low.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   2 citations  
  16. added 2017-07-08
    Population Axiology.Hilary Greaves - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (11):e12442.
    Population axiology is the study of the conditions under which one state of affairs is better than another, when the states of affairs in ques- tion may differ over the numbers and the identities of the persons who ever live. Extant theories include totalism, averagism, variable value theories, critical level theories, and “person-affecting” theories. Each of these the- ories is open to objections that are at least prima facie serious. A series of impossibility theorems shows that this is no coincidence: (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   4 citations  
  17. added 2017-04-10
    Probability in Ethics.David McCarthy - 2016 - In Alan Hájek & Christopher Hitchcock (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Probability. Oxford University Press. pp. 705–737.
    The article is a plea for ethicists to regard probability as one of their most important concerns. It outlines a series of topics of central importance in ethical theory in which probability is implicated, often in a surprisingly deep way, and lists a number of open problems. Topics covered include: interpretations of probability in ethical contexts; the evaluative and normative significance of risk or uncertainty; uses and abuses of expected utility theory; veils of ignorance; Harsanyi’s aggregation theorem; population size problems; (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  18. added 2017-03-15
    The Worseness of Nonexistence.Theron Pummer - 2019 - In Espen Gamlund and Carl Tollef Solberg (ed.), Saving People from the Harm of Death. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 215-228.
    Most believe that it is worse for a person to die than to continue to exist with a good life. At the same time, many believe that it is not worse for a merely possible person never to exist than to exist with a good life. I argue that if the underlying properties that make us the sort of thing we essentially are can come in small degrees, then to maintain this commonly-held pair of beliefs we will have to embrace (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  19. added 2017-03-02
    Priority, Not Equality, for Possible People.Jacob M. Nebel - 2017 - Ethics 127 (4):896-911.
    How should we choose between uncertain prospects in which different possible people might exist at different levels of wellbeing? Alex Voorhoeve and Marc Fleurbaey offer an egalitarian answer to this question. I give some reasons to reject their answer and then sketch an alternative, which I call person-affecting prioritarianism.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   2 citations  
  20. added 2017-02-20
    A Portable Defense of the Procreation Asymmetry.Jake Earl - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (2-3):178-199.
    The Procreation Asymmetry holds that we have strong moral reasons not to create miserable people for their own sakes, but no moral reasons to create happy people for their own sakes. To defend this conjunction against an argument that it leads to inconsistency, I show how recognizing ‘creation’ as a temporally extended process allows us to revise the conjuncts in a way that preserves their intuitive force. This defense of the Procreation Asymmetry is preferable to others because it does not (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  21. added 2016-12-05
    Harm, Benefit, and Non-Identity.Per Algander - 2013 - Dissertation, Uppsala University
    This thesis in an invistigation into the concept of "harm" and its moral relevance. A common view is that an analysis of harm should include a counterfactual condition: an act harms a person iff it makes that person worse off. A common objection to the moral relevance of harm, thus understood, is the non-identity problem. -/- This thesis criticises the counterfactual condition, argues for an alternative analysis and that harm plays two important normative roles. -/- The main ground for rejecting (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  22. added 2016-12-02
    Can Cogency Vanish?Gilbert Plumer - 2016 - Cogency: Journal of Reasoning and Argumentation 8 (1):89-109.
    This paper considers whether universally—for all (known) rational beings—an argument scheme or pattern can go from being cogent (well-reasoned) to fallacious. This question has previously received little attention, despite the centrality of the concepts of cogency, scheme, and fallaciousness. I argue that cogency has vanished in this way for the following scheme, a common type of impersonal means-end reasoning: X is needed as a basic necessity or protection of human lives, therefore, X ought to be secured if possible. As it (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  23. added 2016-03-16
    Parity, Imprecise Comparability, and the Repugnant Conclusion.Ruth Chang - 2016 - Theoria 82 (2):183-215.
    This article explores the main similarities and differences between Derek Parfit’s notion of imprecise comparability and a related notion I have proposed of parity. I argue that the main difference between imprecise comparability and parity can be understood by reference to ‘the standard view’. The standard view claims that 1) differences between cardinally ranked items can always be measured by a scale of units of the relevant value, and 2) all rankings proceed in terms of the trichotomy of ‘better than’, (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   7 citations  
  24. added 2016-03-16
    On the Repugnance of the Repugnant Conclusion.Thomas Søbirk Petersen - 2006 - Theoria 72 (2):126-137.
    The aim of this paper is to discuss the plausibility of a certain position in the philosophical literature within which the Repugnant Conclusion is treated, not as repugnant, but as an acceptable implication of the total welfare principle. I will confine myself to focus primarily on Törbjörn Tännsjö’s presentation. First, I reconstruct Tännsjö’s view concerning the repugnance of the RC in two arguments. The first argument is criticized for (a) addressing the wrong comparison, (b) relying on the controversial claim that (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  25. added 2016-03-16
    Egalitarianism and Repugnant Conclusions.Thomas Søbirk Petersen - 2003 - Danish Yearbook of Philosophy 38:115-125.
    Most philosophers discuss the Repugnant Conclusion as an objection to total utilitarianism. But this focus on total utilitarianism seems to be one-sided. It conceals the important fact that other competing moral theories are also subject to the Repugnant Conclusion. The primary aim of this paper is to demonstrate that versions of egalitarianism are subject to the Repugnant Conclusion and other repugnant conclusions.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  26. added 2016-03-16
    The Value of a Person.John Broome & Adam Morton - 1994 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 68 (1):167 - 198.
    (for Adam Morton's half) I argue that if we take the values of persons to be ordered in a way that allows incomparability, then the problems Broome raises have easy solutions. In particular we can maintain that creating people is morally neutral while killing them has a negative value.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   5 citations  
  27. added 2016-01-11
    Population Engineering and the Fight Against Climate Change.Colin Hickey, Travis N. Rieder & Jake Earl - 2016 - Social Theory and Practice 42 (4):845-870.
    Contrary to political and philosophical consensus, we argue that the threats posed by climate change justify population engineering, the intentional manipulation of the size and structure of human populations. Specifically, we defend three types of policies aimed at reducing fertility rates: choice enhancement, preference adjustment, and incentivization. While few object to the first type of policy, the latter two are generally rejected because of their potential for coercion or morally objectionable manipulation. We argue that forms of each policy type are (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  28. added 2015-02-25
    Mere Addition and the Separateness of Persons.Matthew Rendall - 2015 - Journal of Philosophy 112 (8):442-455.
    How can we resist the repugnant conclusion? James Griffin has plausibly suggested that part way through the sequence we may reach a world—let us call it “J”—in which the lives are lexically superior to those that follow. If it would be preferable to live a single life in J than through any number of lives in the next one, then it would be strange to judge K the better world. Instead, we may reasonably “suspend addition” and judge J superior, as (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  29. added 2014-10-22
    Flourishing and Finitude.Antti Kauppinen - 2014 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy (2):1-6.
    It would be terrible for us if humanity ceased to exist after we all die. But of course, eventually humanity will go out of existence. Does this result in a vicious regress if our flourishing hangs on what happens after us? Mark Johnston thinks so. In this note, I explain how Johnston's objection can be avoided. Briefly, our activities have a meaning horizon that extends for some generations after us. What matters is that we make a positive difference to the (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   2 citations  
  30. added 2014-08-14
    Climate Change and the Intuition of Neutrality.Francesco Orsi - 2014 - In Marcello Di Paola & Gianfranco Pellegrino (eds.), Canned Heat. Ethics and Politics of Global Climate Change. Routledge. pp. 160-176.
    The intuition of neutrality, as discussed by John Broome, says that the addition of people does not, by itself, produce or subtract value from the world. Such intuition allows us to disregard the effects of climate change policy onto the size of populations, effectively allowing us to make policy recommendations. Broome has argued that the intuition has to go. Orsi responds by urging a normative (rather than Broome's axiological) interpretation of neutrality in terms of an exclusionary permission to disregard the (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  31. added 2014-08-13
    Paretian Egalitarianism with Variable Population Size.Peter Vallentyne & Bertil Tungodden - 2007 - In John Roemer & Kotaro Suzumura (eds.), Intergenerational Equity and Sustainability. Palgrave Publishers.
    in Intergenerational Equity and Sustainability, edited by John Roemer and Kotaro Suzumura, (Palgrave Publishers Ltd., forthcoming 2007), ch.11.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  32. added 2014-06-21
    Public Goods and Procreation.Jonny Anomaly - 2014 - Monash Bioethics Review 32 (3-4):172-188.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   3 citations  
  33. added 2014-03-29
    Better to Be Than Not to Be?Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowitz - 2010 - In Hans Joas (ed.), The Benefit of Broad Horizons: Intellectual and Institutional Preconditions for a Global Social Science: Festschrift for Bjorn Wittrock on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday. Brill. pp. 65 - 85.
    Can it be better or worse for a person to be than not to be, that is, can it be better or worse to exist than not to exist at all? This old 'existential question' has been raised anew in contemporary moral philosophy. There are roughly two reasons for this renewed interest. Firstly, traditional so-called “impersonal” ethical theories, such as utilitarianism, have counter-intuitive implications in regard to questions concerning procreation and our moral duties to future, not yet existing people. Secondly, (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  34. added 2014-03-28
    Intuitions About Large Number Cases.Theron Pummer - 2013 - Analysis 73 (1):37-46.
    Is there some large number of very mild hangnail pains, each experienced by a separate person, which would be worse than two years of excruciating torture, experienced by a single person? Many people have the intuition that the answer to this question is No. However, a host of philosophers have argued that, because we have no intuitive grasp of very large numbers, we should not trust such intuitions. I argue that there is decent intuitive support for the No answer, which (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   7 citations  
  35. added 2014-03-13
    In Defence of Repugnance.Michael Huemer - 2008 - Mind 117 (468):899-933.
    I defend the 'Repugnant' Conclusion that for any possible population of happy people, a population containing a sufficient number of people with lives barely worth living would be better. Four lines of argument converge on this conclusion, and the conclusion has a simple, natural theoretical explanation. The opposition to the Repugnant Conclusion rests on a bare appeal to intuition. This intuition is open to charges of being influenced by multiple distorting factors. Several theories of population ethics have been devised to (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   25 citations  
  36. added 2014-03-12
    Human Extinction and the Value of Our Efforts.Brooke Alan Trisel - 2004 - Philosophical Forum 35 (3):371–391.
    Some people feel distressed reflecting on human extinction. Some people even claim that our efforts and lives would be empty and pointless if humanity becomes extinct, even if this will not occur for millions of years. In this essay, I will attempt to demonstrate that this claim is false. The desire for long-lastingness or quasi-immortality is often unwittingly adopted as a standard for judging whether our efforts are significant. If we accomplish our goals and then later in life conclude that (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   6 citations  
  37. added 2012-05-18
    The Best Expression of Welfarism.Christian Coons - 2012 - In Mark C. Timmons (ed.), Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics. Oxford University Press.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark  
  38. added 2012-04-14
    How Best to Prevent Future Persons From Suffering: A Reply to Benatar.Brooke Alan Trisel - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):79-93.
    David Benatar claims that everyone was seriously harmed by coming into existence. To spare future persons from this suffering, we should cease having children, Benatar argues, with the result that humanity would gradually go extinct. Benatar’s claim of universal serious harm is baseless. Each year, an estimated 94% of children born throughout the world do not have a serious birth defect. Furthermore, studies show that most people do not experience chronic pain. Although nearly everyone experiences acute pain and discomforts, such (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation  
  39. added 2011-10-20
    Person-Affecting Views and Saturating Counterpart Relations.Christopher J. G. Meacham - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 158 (2):257-287.
    In Reasons and Persons, Parfit (1984) posed a challenge: provide a satisfying normative account that solves the Non-Identity Problem, avoids the Repugnant and Absurd Conclusions, and solves the Mere-Addition Paradox. In response, some have suggested that we look toward person-affecting views of morality for a solution. But the person-affecting views that have been offered so far have been unable to satisfy Parfit's four requirements, and these views have been subject to a number of independent complaints. This paper describes a person-affecting (...)
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   4 citations  
  40. added 2011-09-08
    Contemporary Anti-Natalism, Featuring Benatar's Better Never to Have Been.Thaddeus Metz - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):1-9.
    A critical overview of the latest discussion of anti-natalism, with particular reference to David Benatar's work and three additional rationales for anti-natalism that differ from Benatar's.
    Remove from this list   Download  
     
    Export citation  
     
    Bookmark   1 citation