Larry Simon's Lecture

Print version
Text Size: Change text to small (default) Change text to medium Change text to large
Related Files

» lecture slides
Powerpoint slides from Larry Simon's Lecture (in PDF format)

October 4th, 4:30PM, Clark 507

    All Graduate Students and Postdocs are welcome to attend the next Marine Policy Discussion Group meeting, on October 4th, starting at 4:30PM, in Clark 507, with the invited lecturer, Larry Simon.

    Larry Simon is an Associate Professor of Philosophy and the acting Director of the Environmental Studies Program at Bowdoin College. Dr. Simon's interests focus on environmental ethics and justice, and more generally on moral philosophy. He is the second speaker in a three part series that Andy Solow has organized to expose us to principles used in Marine Policy Analysis.  The lecture will be informal, and it will be geared at an introductory level for those of us who are uninitiated to ethics and philosophy.

Please try very hard to attend Dr. Simon's lecture, since:

A) It's going to be very interesting.
B) He's coming all the way from Maine to talk to us.
C) After the lecture you're invited to join Dr. Simon for a free dinner at the Chappaquoit Grill! (please RSVP to Jon at

    We encourage everybody to take a look at the readings to prepare for his lecture, but the readings are not a prerequisite for attending.  They cover two distinct schools of thought for decision making about environmental policy issues.  The first school considers how one should make decisions: whether by an analysis that will maximize everybody’s wellbeing (readings 1 and 2), or one that follows uncompromising moral ‘rules’ (reading 3).  The  second school deals more in terms of who’s wellbeing it is proper to consider (readings 4 and 5), and as an example reading 4 deals with whether the wellbeing of animals, trees, rivers, ecosystems etc. should be considered when making decisions to damn a river and fill a valley.

Jon and Gareth

1. a chapter on classical utilitarianism (Sections 3 and 4, pp. 107-121, on Bentham and Mill are optional.)

2. a chapter on contemporary utilitarianism

3. contemporary deontology

4. an article by Peter Singer on the question of moral standing

5. a short essay by Callicott on environmental ethics, mostly also on moral standing

(please contact Jon at if you would like a copy of the readings)


WHOI logo

Last updated October 11, 2005
© Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. All rights reserved