The MMER project

Moral Motivation: Evidence and Relevance

Workshop on The Relevance of Motivational Internalism

University of Gothenburg, August 17-18, 2011

The relation between moral judgments and moral motivation is a central issue in ethical theory, having implications for the nature of moral judgments, the meaning of normative terms, and the possibility of objective truth and knowledge in morality. According to a strong form of motivational internalism, the relation is both intrinsic and necessary: to judge that an act is morally wrong is (at least in part) to be motivated not to perform it. When combined with a humean theory of motivation, this form of internalism has often been seen as incompatible with moral cognitivism or objectivism.

The relevance of recently developed weaker forms of internalism is less clear, however. The aim of this workshop is to address this issue, bringing together philosophers who have defended or criticised such forms of internalism and philosophers who work on questions related to the relevance of internalism. Plenty of time will be left for both formal and informal discussion.


Wednesday Aug 17

10.30-10.45 Introduction

10.45-12.00Jon Tresan (Chapel Hill)


13.30-14.45Gunnar Björnsson (Linköping, Gothenburg)

14.45-15.25Coffee break

15.25-16.40James Lenman (Sheffield)

17.00-18.25 John Eriksson (Gothenburg)

Thursday Aug 18

10.45-12.00Nick Zangwill (Durham)


13.30-14.45Ragnar Francén (Stockholm)

14.45-15.25Coffee break

15.25-16.40Michael Ridge (Edinburgh)

17.00-18.25 Caj Strandberg (Gothenburg)

Venue: Olof Wijksgatan 6 (Gamla Hovrätten), Room T116

Participation is free, but participants need to register by email to before August 10th.

The workshop is organized by the MMER project and the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science, University of Gothenburg