Conference: Exploring Double Effect

Saturday 19th February 9.30 – 5.30
Blackfriars Hall, Oxford OX1 3LY

Call for papers closes: 21st January 2010

We invite submissions of short papers by graduate students/early career academics, to the Anscombe Bioethics Centre’s conference on Double Effect Reasoning, to be held on Saturday 19th February 2011 and co-sponsored by Blackfriars Hall, a Permanent Private Hall of Oxford University.

Papers may be on any topic relating to double effect reasoning, and should be suitable for a 20 minute presentation. Academic posters will also been considered for display.

Joseph Boyle (Toronto & The Anscombe Bioethics Centre)

Other participants include:
– David Jones (The Anscombe Bioethics Centre)
– John Wyatt (UCL)
– John Keown (Georgetown & The Anscombe Bioethics Centre)
– Sir Anthony Kenny (Oxford Emeritus)
– Tom Pink (KCL)
– Nigel Biggar (Oxford)
– Luke Gormally (The Anscombe Bioethics Centre)
– Joseph Shaw (Oxford)
– Helen Watt (The Anscombe Bioethics Centre)

THEME: Double effect reasoning is an important and controversial kind of normative moral reasoning, dealing with the ethics of side effects and action specification. While many are happy to say that ‘something like double effect reasoning must be true’ and everyday examples of DER seem uncontroversial, formulations are disputed to the point of calling the project into question, difficult cases remain unresolved, and the ‘gap’ between theory and practice, particularly in the field of healthcare, seems to be a difficult test case for applied philosophy.

CONFERENCE HOST: The Anscombe Bioethics Centre (formerly the Linacre Centre for Healthcare Ethics) is a Roman Catholic academic institute that engages with the moral questions arising in clinical practice and biomedical research. The Centre engages in scholarly dialogue with academics and practitioners of other traditions. It contributes to public policy debates as well as to debates and consultations within the Church. It runs educational programmes for, and gives advice to, Catholics and other interested healthcare professionals and biomedical scientists. It is seeking to work with Blackfriars, a Permanent Private Hall of Oxford University, in promoting academic research in medical ethics. Blackfriars are co-sponsoring this event.

Papers should be of a suitable length for a 20 minute presentation.

Please send the following to in .doc, .rtf, or
.pdf format:

1) A cover letter containing:
(a) the author’s name
(b) institutional affiliation
(c) contact information
(d) the title of the paper
(e) word count

2) The paper itself, including the title and a short abstract (no more than 200 words), and with no information identifying the author or the author’s institutional affiliation.

For further and general enquiries, please email: admin [at]

Further information about the conference can be found at the conference website here.


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