[SydPhil] REMINDER: USyd Postgrad Colloquium May 19: Robyn Kath, "Risky Population Decisions and the Value of Nonexistence"

Elena Walsh elenawalsh at gmail.com
Sat May 17 12:50:02 AEST 2014

Dear all,
The next USyd philosophy postgraduate colloquium will be held on Monday May
19 @ 2pm in the Muniment room (Quadrangle building, University of Sydney).

Talk details:

Title: Risky Population Decisions and the Value of Nonexistence

Abstract: The population ethics literature has so far focused on acts with
known outcomes. However, a useful moral decision procedure must arbitrate
between risky acts. I will address the extension of utilitarian moral
theories to risky population decisions. In particular, I will discuss the
significance of claims about the value of nonexistence. Should we assign a
utility value (for example, 0) to nonexistence? To answer 'No' at first
seems to undermine the use of standard decision theory in population
decisions. I will show that this is not the case; and indeed, that not
assigning a utility value to nonexistence leads to better conclusions in
some risky population decisions.

Please come along, all welcome.
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