Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

Research Unit for Ethics, Legal, and Political Philosophy


The unit coordinates the work of researchers working on interrelated questions in ethics, legal, and political philosophy. Current research questions concern the ethics of war, bioethics, moral psychology, roboethics, political justice, public space, politics of everyday life, social philosophy, inequality, the public sphere, the welfare state, normativity, naturalism, the ethics and politics of punishment, and the nature of rights, media ethics, and history of ethics.

The unit has an international profile, with solid ties to several of the world’s most prominent research centers in the field. Its research is published in top ranked journals. Members of the unit are actively seeking large European and Danish funds.

The unit hosts a permanent research seminar with a university-wide following, frequently organizes workshops and conferences.

Unit Coordinator

Raffaele Rodogno

Associate professor, research programme director

Events Spring 2019

Tor. 21/2, 13:15 – 15:00, B1467-616

A.J. Julius (UCLA): “A form of freedom: reasons and acting for reasons”


Man. 18/3, 13:15 – 15:00, B1467-616 

Nicholas Vrousalis (AU & Leiden): “How exploiters dominate.”

This paper argues that exploitation is a form of domination, namely domination for self-enrichment. I argue that what makes exploitation wrong is that it constitutes domination-induced unilateral service to others; that this form of servitude is necessarily cashed out in terms of labour time or effort; that competing contemporary accounts of exploitation fail to do justice to the servitude dimension; and that one influential account of exploitation, due to Alan Wertheimer, presupposes something like this view.

Mandag 8. April, 13.15 – 15 i 1467-616

Morten Højer Jensen:

“Can the authorization account transmit moral responsibility and solve the collective harm problem?”



There are cases of large scale harm, where the harm depends on the actions of a multitude of individuals, but where only a few, if any, individually fulfill the conditions for moral responsibility (MR) for that harm. The main problem is that most fail to exercise a sufficient degree of causal control. Since some perceive our inability to hold many responsibility in such cases as a deficit in the moral accounting books, alternative accounts of MR which do not rely on causal control have been proposed. I will critically examine one such account, namely the authorization account. On this account an individual can be MR for a given harm if she has authorized the actions of others who were MR. If such an account of MR is viable, it can potentially be employed as a solution to the collective harm problem where MR is transmitted from the few to the many.

Though this account seems promising, I argue that the authorization account is an inadequate solution to the collective harm problem, and further, that it is implausible grounds for MR transmission.


Mandag 29/4, 13.15–15, 1467-616, B1467-616

Rasmus Sommer Hansen, ”Begrebslig holisme og implikationer for teorier om lighed”