Pluralism, Democracy, and Justice (PDJ)



Pluralism, Democracy and Justice (PDJ) – Research strategy
PDJ specializes in contemporary, normative political philosophy. We aim to produce cutting-edge research, and to facilitate research projects in collaboration with national and international partners. Taking a problem-oriented approach, PDJ emphasizes the role that political philosophy can and should play in dealing with the real world challenges and conflicts of our time, such as rising economic inequalities, cultural and political polarization, distrust of democratic procedures, extremism and radicalization, the marginalization of minorities and vulnerable groups. Our research covers issues of democratic theory, cultural and religious pluralism, human rights, legal theory, human welfare and welfare policies, capabilities and human flourishing, global justice and distributive justice. Currently, we give special priority to two areas: global justice and democratic theory.

1 Global Justice: Globalization processes redefine the ways in which different political, civic, economic etc. actors relate to one another, and how their roles as agents and contributors of justice are conceived. This also applies to minority rights, and the ways in which different types of minorities (including indigenous, ethnic, religious, linguistic, and sexual minorities) are protected in local, societal, regional, and global settings. In connection to this research focus, PDJ is currently hosting a research project “Globalizing Minority Rights: Cosmopolitanism, Global Institutions, and Cultural Justice” , funded by the Norwegian Research Council/ SAMKUL program 2016-2020. GMR aims to develop cosmopolitan approaches to the Conceptualization, Justification, and Implementation of minority rights in global settings, and test these theoretical frameworks on three case studies: Minorities in the developing world, Indigenous peoples, and Refugees.

2 Democratic theory: Democratic institutions (and their associated checks and balances on power) are under threat, many voters feel disenfranchised from political processes that are supposed to represent their interests, and reasoned political debate increasingly seems supplanted by political populism and ‘alternative facts’. Which cultural, technological and political developments have led to this situation? How should policies and institutions respond to these challenges? How can we reassert the virtues and procedures of democratic decision-making? How, finally, can we make the arguments that support democratic decision-making over other forms of government more accessible to a wider audience? In 2018, the group will work towards external funding based on a research application within democratic theory.

To date, PDJ has 18 members composed by senior staff, young career researchers, and students. PDJ has also national and international associate members. With core funding provided by the HSL for basic research, PDJ is able to develop long-term and broad-based research strategies, and deploy groups and expand partnerships for short-term funding-driven research according to specific calls


Group leader: Annamari Vitikainen

Vice leader: Kerstin Reibold

Last updated: January 2020. 


New podcasts from the Indigenous Land Rights and Reconciliation conference available

For more information, click here

New leader of PDJ 01.01.2020

Associate Professor Annamari Vitikainen will be leading the PDJ research group from 01.01.2020. As a leader of PDJ, Vitikainen hopes to solidify PDJ’s status as one of the leading research groups in political philosophy in Norway, and to increase the group’s exposure and impact internationally.

For more information, click here

Call for Papers: Global Structural Injustice and Minority Rights

Dates: Friday, March 13 – Sunday, March 15, 2020

Location: Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA

Deadline Extended: August 1, 2019 

For more information, click here

Workshop: Contemporary Themes in Ethics and Political Philosophy VI - Pluralism and Populism: Challenges for Normative Philosophy

Dates: June 11-12 2019

Venue: University of Cádiz

Organized by the Civic Constellation Group, University de Cádiz and Pluralism, Democracy and Justice Research Group

For more information click Here.

Call for Papers

Political theory of LGBTQ migrants and refugees

30 November 2018 - University of Ottawa

Submission deadline: 1 August 2018

For more information, click here

PhD Candidate in Political Philosophy
Application deadline: 20.08.2018

One PhD Candidate position in political philosophy is available at the Department of Philosophy at the University of Tromsø – The Arctic University of Norway (UiT). The position is affiliated with the research group in political philosophy: Pluralism, Democracy and Justice. For more information go to Fellowships.

Conference: Refugees and Minority Rights - Acceptable and unacceptable criteria for accepting/rejecting refugees in a non-ideal world

Dates: June 14-15 2018

Venue: UiT - The Arctic University of Norway

Organized by the Globalising Minority Rights project.

For more information click Here.

GMR reading group on the ethics of migration (Autumn 2017/Spring 2018)

On 14-15 June 2018, the GMR Research Project at the Department of Philosophy will be hosting a conference titled “Refugees and Minority Rights: Acceptable and Unacceptable Criteria for Accepting/Rejecting Refugees in a Non-ideal World.” In preparation for the conference, members of the GMR Reading Group will be meeting every other Thursday to discuss the works of the keynote speakers. Everyone is invited to join and participate in the discussions!

For more information, click here

Call for Papers

Refugees and minority rights: Acceptable and unacceptable criteria for accepting/rejecting refugees in a non-ideal world

14-15 June 2018 - UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Campus Tromsø

Submission deadline: 15 January 2018

For more information, click here


Workshop: Democracy in Context: Contemporary Themes in Ethics and Political Philosophy

Dates: June 10-11 2017

Venue: Longyearbyen

Organized by the Civic Constellation Group, Environmental Research Group (UiT) and Globalising Minority Rights.

For more information click Here.