# Normative Concepts in the Digital Age: Paradigm Shift or Piecemeal Engineering

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# Conference

When and where: 14th and 15th of November 2024 at the Academy of Sciences and Literature (opens new window) in Mainz, Germany

Organisers: Gottfried Schweiger (opens new window) (Paris Lodron University Salzburg) & Frodo Podschwadek (opens new window) (Academy of Sciences and Literature Mainz)

# Call for Papers

In an era where digital technology pervades every facet of our lives, from healthcare and education to politics and personal relationships, the philosophical foundations that guide our ethical, social, and political judgments are under intense scrutiny. The integration of digital technologies into the fabric of society poses unprecedented challenges and opportunities for re-examining normative concepts that are central to many philosophical inquiries.

This conference seeks to explore the philosophical impact of digital technology on our understanding and application of normative concepts such as autonomy, vulnerability, trust, justice, responsibility, and equality (among others). The following invited speakers have already confirmed their participation:

In addition, we invite scholars from ethics, political philosophy, value theory, aesthetics, metaethics, as well as other matching areas, to contribute their insights on whether the digital age necessitates a paradigm shift in our normative thinking or if it calls for a more cautious, piecemeal approach to re-engineering these concepts.

Contributions may address, but are not limited to, the following questions:

  • How does digital technology challenge our traditional notions of autonomy and responsibility? Are existing models of these concepts adequate for addressing issues raised by digital technologies, such as artificial intelligence and big data?
  • In what ways do digital environments affect our understanding of vulnerability and trust? How do these changes impact ethical and political frameworks that rely on these concepts?
  • Does the digital age call for a re-evaluation of justice and equality? How can we ensure that technological advancements do not exacerbate existing inequalities or create new forms of injustice?
  • How do digital technologies redefine concepts like well-being and human flourishing? What implications does this have for ethical and philosophical practice?

We are particularly interested in papers that offer innovative approaches to adapting, expanding, or reinterpreting normative concepts in light of the challenges posed by digital technologies. Contributions may draw on a wide range of philosophical traditions and methodologies, including but not limited to analytical and continental philosophy, feminist philosophy, philosophy of technology, and social and political philosophy.

Our aims are to foster interdisciplinary dialogue and collaboration, offering a platform for scholars to engage with the complex interplay between digital technology and normative philosophy. By bringing together diverse perspectives, we hope to contribute to a deeper understanding of how normative concepts can guide us in navigating the ethical, social, and political landscapes of the digital age.

The conference will be held on the 14th and 15th of November 2024 at the Academy of Sciences and Literature in Mainz, Germany. All speakers need to be able attend in person (while we hope to make the talks accessible to an online audience, we unfortunately cannot provide sufficient technical support for online speaker attendance).

Submissions in the form of abstracts of approximately 500 words (excluding references) can be sent to gottfried.schweiger@plus.ac.at and frodo.podschwadek@adwmainz.de by the 30th of June 2024 latest. The length of the talk should be roughly 30 minutes, leaving 20 minutes of Q&A for every paper.

Accepted speakers will be notified by end of July latest. Accommodation at the Hotel INNdependence (opens new window) in Mainz will be organised by the Academy. Further, we can offer reimbursement of travel expenses up to 300 Euro per speaker (second class train tickets and/or economy class flights).

Kind regards,
Gottfried Schweiger & Frodo Podschwadek

# Funding

This conference is funded by the Fritz Thyssen Foundation (opens new window).