Tag Archives: Intergenerational Justice

Call for Papers: Intergenerational Justice and Natural Resources

Moral Philosophy & Politics (MOPP)

Call for Papers on „Intergenerational Justice and Natural Resources”, Special Issue 2014/01

Editors: Pranay Sanklecha and Alexa Zellentin (together with Lukas H. Meyer)

Through their use of natural resources, presently living people will affect the conditions under which future people will live. This raises questions of intergenerational justice: What do presently living people owe future generations, in particular, which natural resources, with the policy options they allow, should remain available to future generations (and to what extent)? Further, it is particularly the industrialized countries of the global North who have caused the problem of climate change, in part because of the fact that the process of industrialization came with increasing levels of emissions. At the same time, the harmful effects of climate change will be felt disproportionately by developing countries (particularly those in the global South), who have benefited far less from industrialization. Do OECD countries therefore stand under special duties towards the victims of climate change in the global South?

Deadline for submission: August 31, 2013

 

The journal’s manuscript submission site can be found under:

http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/mopp

 

Information on the Moral Philosophy and Politics (MOPP)

Founding Editors: 

Lukas Meyer [http://www.uni-graz.at/lukas.meyer] (Graz University, Austria)

Mark Peacock [http://www.yorku.ca/mpeacock/index.html] (York University, Canada)

Peter Schaber [http://www.ethik.uzh.ch/afe/ma/peterschaber.html] (Zürich University, Switzerland)

Michael Schefczyk [http://www.leuphana.de/michael-schefczyk.html] (Leuphana University, Germany / Editor-in-Chief)

 

Aims & Scope: 

Moral Philosophy and Politics (MPP) is an international, peer-reviewed journal which invites the submission of original philosophical articles on issues of public relevance. ‘Public relevance’ is to be understood in a broad sense. Of particular interest to the journal are the philosophical assessment of policy and its normative basis, analyses of the philosophical underpinnings or implications of political debate and reflection on the justice or injustice of the social and political structures which regulate human action.

MPP is committed to the ideal of clarity, evidence-based thinking and intellectual openness; interdisciplinary work and historical approaches will be considered as long as they are relevant to contemporary issues. MPP will consider publishing both theoretical and meta-ethical work as well as work concerned with conceptual problems, if such work sheds light on political, moral, economic and social issues of contemporary societies. Contributors are expected to make clear how their work relates to these issues.

 

Editorial Board 

Elizabeth Anderson (University of Michigan)

Arthur Applbaum (Harvard University)

Dieter Birnbacher (Düsseldorf University)

Rüdiger Bittner (Bielefeld University)

Idil Boran (York University)

John Broome (Oxford University)

Simon Caney (Oxford University)

Paula Casal (ICREA/Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona)

Stephen Darwall (Yale University)

Andreas Føllesdal (Oslo University)

Rainer Forst (Frankfurt University)

Stephen Gardiner (University of Washington)

Stefan Gosepath (Frankfurt University)

David Heyd (Hebrew University)

Wilfried Hinsch (Cologne University)

Duncan Ivison (Sydney University)

Rahel Jaeggi (Humboldt University Berlin)

Matt Matravers (University of York)

Kirsten Meyer (Humboldt University Berlin)

David Miller (Oxford University)

Nenad Miscevic (Maribor University)

Susan Neiman (Einstein Forum)

Elif Özmen (Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich)

Nigel Pleasants (University of Exeter)

Thomas Pogge (Yale University)

Mathias Risse (Harvard University)

Sam Scheffler (New York University)

Ralf Stoecker (Potsdam University)

Adam Swift (University of Warwick)

John Tasioulas (University College London)

Leif Wenar (King’s College London)

Andrew Williams (ICREA/Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona)

Lea Ypi (London School of Economics)

 

General Information on Publisher & Journal: 

Journal Structure: 

Articles (5.000-10.000 words), Discussions, Critical Studies, Book Reviews

Publisher: 

Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co., Berlin and New York

Publication Frequency: 

Twice a year, starting in spring 2014

Language: 

English

Online Journal & Peer Review Tool: 

ScholarOne Manuscripts,

 

The journal’s manuscript submission site can be found under:

mc.manuscriptcentral.com/mopp

 

Online Access:

Free online access to the first issue for up to 60 days; online access via IP address to university libraries & other customers for subsequent issues; MPP can be packaged with other De Gruyter journals, for instance Kant StudienNietzsche-Studien and Wittgenstein-Studien.

Distribution/Marketing:

Communication via De Gruyter Subject Newsletter, De Gruyter Library Newsletter, De Gruyter Library Supplier Newsletter, Social Media; De Gruyter is represented at about seventy specialist conferences; De Gruyter actively cooperates with abstracting & indexing services worldwide

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One Worry about Representatives for Future Generations

Future generations are affected by present-day decisions but the choices they would make if they could participate in these decisions obviously cannot enter the present-day democratic process. However, their interests can enter the present democratic process and they can do so in at least two ways:

  1. There can be special representatives for future generations in parliament. For example, 10% of the seats in parliament could be reserved for such representatives of future generations with the right to vote.
  2. The normal MPs can incorporate the interests of future generations in their normal decision-making. That’s what we currently do (though we could improve the current model by supporting the incorporation of the interests of future  generations by an ombudsman laying out the interest of future generations for MPs  and exhorting them to take account of them).

There are further options – such as constitutional provisions that put limits on what can be done to future generations – but I want to focus on one specific problem that the first option (representatives for future generations) has in contrast to the second option (expecting normal MPs to incorporate the interests of future generations in their choices).

If a country were to introduce special representatives for future generations in parliament by reserving 10% of the seats for them, then there are three effects:

  1. The interests of future generations enter the present democratic process better because 10% of MPs are supposed to incorporate and represent exclusively those future interests.
  2. The interests of future generations enter the present democratic process better because 10% of the MPs constantly remind the other 90% of the concerns of future generations.
  3. The interests of future generations enter the present democratic process worse because the 90% “normal” MPs might give less weight to the interests of future generations than they would do if there were no 10% special representatives. In other words: The fact that there are special representatives for future generations “crowds out” the motivation in normal MPs to take account of future generations. They can tell themselves that the concerns of future generations are already taken care of (by the 10% special representatives) and thus they can stop worrying about the future themselves.

I am worried that the third effect might outweigh the first two (and countervailing) effects. Even though it seems that reserving a certain number of seats in parliament for future generations would serve future generations well, the opposite might possibly happen. If special representatives mean that everyone else stops considering the future their own responsibility, then it’s better not to have special representatives.

People are pessimistic about the future

An interesting excerpt from the newsletter of the Foundation for the Rights of Future Generations: “An international public opinion poll recently published by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) shows that of the 13 countries investigated, only citizens in Brazil, Belgium and India believe that future generations will be better off than today’s generation. 66% of respondents from all countries believe that future generations will be worse off, while only 27% believe they will be better off. According to the survey, the French have the most pessimistic outlook, with 93% of respondents feeling that future generations will be disadvantaged. The findings represent the opinions of over 1.4 billion people. The full study is available on the ITUC’s website.”