Call-for-Papers: Summer School in Tübingen mit Martha Nussbaum

Im Juni findet an der Uni Tübingen die Summer School “The Capability Approach on Social Order” mit Martha Nussbaum (Chicago) statt. Bewerbungen können bis zum 31.03.2010 eingereicht werden. Mehr Informationen nach dem Klick:


International Interdisciplinary Summer School “The Capability Approach on Social Order”
with Martha Nussbaum, University of Chicago

Tuebingen, June 21-25, 2010

Application deadline: March 31, 2010

We kindly invite graduate students and junior scientists of law, economics, political science, cultural studies, the divinities, philosophy and history to apply for the Forum Scientiarum’s International Interdisciplinary Summer School on “The Capability Approach on Social Order”. Jointly organized by the Forum Scientiarum of the Eberhard Karls University of Tuebingen, the Udo Keller Foundation Forum Humanum, Hamburg, and the Suhrkamp Publishing House, this year’s Summer School is taking place in Tuebingen, Germany, June 21-25, 2010.
The Summer School is part of the “Unseld Lectures at the Forum Scientiarum of Tuebingen University – initiated and sponsored by the Udo Keller Foundation Forum Humanum”.

Participants‘ papers will be considered for publication in a conference volume.


What are sustainable principles of state government? What duties should
be imposed on governmental actors? Which boundaries should be set for
them? In recent years, the Capability Approach has become a widely
accepted paradigm in western development policies. It is a subject of
current discussion to which extent this normative framework can be
applied to other social areas.

Pioneered by economist Amartya Sen, this approach to evaluating
individual well-being and soial arrangements focuses on the
opportunities for citizens to exercise self-determination. This view
contrasts with common theories that see development in terms of GNP
growth or the access to income, ressources and formal rights.

Martha Nussbaum, this year’s Unseld lecturer, has extended the
Capability Approach and has suggested a set of institutional guarantees
that citizens of all societies should be afforded, placing emphasis on
social contexts where due to asymmetry of power fair rules for all
parties are not likely to be expected.

The scope, legitimacy and bare possibility of such a pluralistic, yet
universalist theory of justice are at the heart of a vivid
transdisciplinary discussion this summer school is aiming at.
Application papers should address one or more of the following questions:

How can the Capability Approach be brought to fruition in combination
with the findings and methods of various disciplines, such as economics,
political science or law? How can capabilities be measured? What is the
account of a catalogue of central human capabilities aiming at an
overlapping consensus on values universal to humanity? How can perceived
problems of the Capability Approach be solved?


Twenty graduate students and junior scientists from all over the world
will have the opportunity to discuss the above questions with Martha
Nussbaum and present their own work to fellow participants. The first
two days will focus on selected contributions by participants and
readings assigned to the students in advance. The third and fourth day
will be directed by Martha Nussbaum who will introduce her latest works
on the Capability Approach and discuss these with the participants. On
the third day, the students will also follow a colloquium at which
Martha Nussbaum will debate with experts of welfare economics,
international law and development theory.


Martha Nussbaum is Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law
and Ethics at the University of Chicago. The early written Aristotle
interpretation already established her as a specialist in ancient
philosophy. Shortly after, Nussbaum extended her area of research and
published works concerning mainly modern moral-philosophic questions,
concentrating on subjects where ethics, literature and feminism overlap.
Her more recent work focuses on the meaning of emotions, i.e.
experiences, to which she ascribes a wholly independent epistemic value.
Moreover, she is well-known for her collaboration with Amartya Sen on
the Capability Approach and the elaboration of her own version of this
approach which elevates the enabling of human development to the
criterion of social justice. Her recent work “Liberty of Conscience“ is
a discourse on religion and the legal system in the USA with regard to a
“tragic burden“ that is often imposed on religious minorities on the
part of an unbending state.

Martha Nussbaum received numerous literary awards and honorary degrees
from more than thirty colleges and universities in America, Asia and
Europe. Visiting professorship held Professor Nussbaum inter alia in
Paris (1984), Oxford (1986-1987), Oslo (1994 and 1998) and Harvard
(2007). Selected essential publications: “Women and Human Development:
The Capabilities Approach“ (2000), “Upheavals of Thought“ (2001),
“Frontiers of Justice“ (2006), “Liberty of Conscience“ (2008).


To apply, participants need to submit a paper of up to 5000 words,
prepared for blind reviewing. Additionally, a CV form, downloadable from
our website, has to be completed. Application deadline is March 31,
2010. A letter of admission together with a detailed syllabus will reach
successful applicants by April 30, 2010.

There is no program fee, accommodation is free. The Forum Scientiarum
provides select participants grants for covering travel expenses,
awarded by the Udo Keller Foundation Forum Humanum. Please find more
information on financial assistance on our website.

Applications should be sent to or to our
postal address: FORUM SCIENTIARUM, Doblerstrasse 33, 72074 Tuebingen,
Germany. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us
by e-mail or consult the website“

[via Thom Brooks]

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