Institute funds new faculty collaborations in ethics

KIELogo-gray400Five projects have been chosen for the Kenan Institute for Ethics’s collaborative scholarly projects in ethics grants, exploring issues ranging across developing economies, disaster recovery, moral decision-making, ecosystems in the Global South, and environmental justice. This new funding mechanism aims to ignite new inquiries in ethics broadly conceived and provide support for new faculty partnerships and collaborations across campus. The selected projects will build new constituencies and research communities, both internally at Duke and in the broader community, beginning with identified networks of Duke faculty and post-docs as well as graduate and undergraduate students.

“We are delighted by the range of participants – from five schools, four institutes, and fifteen departments – and how the projects further extend attention to ethics across the university and beyond its walls,” says Noah Pickus, Nannerl O. Keohane Director of KIE. “Some projects add new dimensions to areas we’ve been working in, others launch entirely new trajectories and still others bring together emerging areas of interest at Kenan and across the university.”

The selected projects and their faculty leadership are:

  • The Role of Markets in Ethical Global Development
    This project will initiate and develop a debate about the current iterations of market-based, capitalist, and growth-centered models for development in both the Global North and Global South.

  • Dimensions of Disaster: Decisions, Representations, Ethics
    This multi-site project will examine the ethical dimensions of mitigating the hazards and structuring the recovery of natural disasters across time, such as the Great Kantō earthquake in 1923 Tokyo, as well as more recent events like Hurricane Katrina and the 2011 earthquake in New Zealand.

  • Cross-Cultural Approaches to Moral Attitudes and Decision-Making
    This project will draw from Euro-American and Asian philosophical and religious traditions as well as cognitive psychology to address questions at the heart of human nature and its moral foundations, bridging not only philosophy and religion but also social and hard sciences.

  • Instituting the Ethics of Payments for Ecosystems Services: Alternative Discourses from the Global South
    This project will create dialogue around critiques of the existing economic model for Payments for ecosystem services (PES), which provide financial incentives to land owners to adapt more environmentally beneficial practices. Particular attention will be paid to who is privileged in this system and how the poor are disenfranchised.

  • Environmental Justice Community Building
    This project will inquire into the causes, consequences, and potential solutions for the inequitable distribution of environmental resources, burdens, externalities, and benefits amongs social groups.