Research profile

Our main focus is different theoretical challenges and problems pertaining to the normative authority of ethics and morality and the role morality/ethics may have in our lives. The aim of all ethical inquiry is an ambitious one: namely, to answer the issue of how one should live one's life. Our aim is to contribute to this fundamental question by address its theoretical underpinnings. As a research group, we approach these questions from a wide range of theoretical perspectives, both contemporary and historical. More narrowly, we focus on five interrelated topics of ethical-cum-meta-ethical inquiry: (1) value theory (aexiology) and theory of normativity; (2) action theory and moral psychology; (3) moral metaphysics; (4) moral semantics and -epistemology; as well as (4) quality- and meaning of life. Given that the aim of all ethical inquiry is the question of how one ought to live, an important aspect of our work is also to apply theories and results to normative- and ethical issues: thereby contributing to both normative ethics and -theory construction, more generally, as well as to what one may label as applied ethics.

In particular, we focus on the following questions and issues:

(1) Value Theory/Theory of Normativity: Normative Pluralism

The question of how the normative authority of morality/ethics relates to other sorts of normative claims and values, such as self-interest and prudential values.

(2) Action Theory/Moral Psychology: Ethical Constitutivism

The question of whether the nature and normative authority of morality/ethics has a constitutive footing or leverage in our nature: that is, in our nature as agents, -persons and -psychological subjects.

(3) Moral Metaphysics: Realism and Constructivism

The question of whether (or how) commitments to the normative authority of morality fit in with what we know (or believe we know) about the world in general, such as in the other sciences, metaphysics and ontology.

(4) Moral Semantics and -Epistemology: Interpretation and Ethical Methodology

The question of how we are to semantically interpret and -analyze ethical-cum-normative utterances and claims, as well as the question of how (if at all) we can come to know or justify one or more such assertions.

(5) Quality- and Meaning of Life: Welfare, Happiness and Meaning

The question of how the quality- and meaning of life - as well as other relevant notions, such as meaning, happiness, welfare and so on - relate to the nature and normative authority of morality/ethics.