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Normative Responsibilities: Structure and Sources

In Kristien Hens, Dorothee Horstkötter & Daniela Cutas (eds.), Parental Responsibility in the Context of Neuroscience and Genetics. Springer. pp. 13–33 (2017)

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  1. XI—Responsibilities and Taking on Responsibility.Cheshire Calhoun - 2019 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 119 (3):231-251.
    There is a familiar, everyday notion of a responsibility. Much of daily life on and off the job is consumed by taking care of responsibilities in this sense. But what is a responsibility, and how are responsibilities related to obligations? Reflection on the phenomenon of taking on responsibilities suggests that the concept of ‘a responsibility’ is distinct from that of ‘an obligation’, and that not all responsibilities are also obligations, even though many are.
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  • The Psychological Basis of Collective Action.James Fanciullo - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-18.
    Sometimes, a group of people can produce a morally bad outcome despite each person’s individual act making no difference to whether the outcome is produced. Since each person’s act makes no difference, it seems the effects of the act cannot provide a reason not to perform it. This is problematic, because if each person acts in accordance with their reasons, each will presumably perform the act—and thus, the bad outcome will be brought about. I suggest that the key to solving (...)
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  • On Individual and Shared Obligations: In Defense of the Activist’s Perspective.Gunnar Björnsson - forthcoming - In Mark Budolfson, Tristram McPherson & David Plunkett (eds.), Philosophy and Climate Change. Oxford University Press.
    We naturally attribute obligations to groups, and take such obligations to have consequences for the obligations of group members. The threat posed by anthropogenic climate change provides an urgent case. It seems that we, together, have an obligation to prevent climate catastrophe, and that we, as individuals, have an obligation to contribute. However, understood strictly, attributions of obligations to groups might seem illegitimate. On the one hand, the groups in question—the people alive today, say—are rarely fully-fledged moral agents, making it (...)
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  • Collective Responsibility and Collective Obligations Without Collective Moral Agents.Gunnar Björnsson - forthcoming - In Saba Bazargan-Forward & Deborah Tollefsen (eds.), Handbook of Collective Responsibility. Routledge.
    It is commonplace to attribute obligations to φ or blameworthiness for φ-ing to groups even when no member has an obligation to φ or is individually blameworthy for not φ-ing. Such non-distributive attributions can seem problematic in cases where the group is not a moral agent in its own right. In response, it has been argued both that non-agential groups can have the capabilities requisite to have obligations of their own, and that group obligations can be understood in terms of (...)
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  • Collectives’ and Individuals’ Obligations: A Parity Argument.Stephanie Collins & Holly Lawford-Smith - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (1):38-58.
    Individuals have various kinds of obligations: keep promises, don’t cause harm, return benefits received from injustices, be partial to loved ones, help the needy and so on. How does this work for group agents? There are two questions here. The first is whether groups can bear the same kinds of obligations as individuals. The second is whether groups’ pro tanto obligations plug into what they all-things-considered ought to do to the same degree that individuals’ pro tanto obligations plug into what (...)
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