Autonomy in Moral and Political Philosophy

Convenor: Chris Mills (

This panel seeks to bring together current researchers on the topic of personal and moral autonomy. Personal autonomy is traditionally seen as a central value in liberal political morality. For this reason, arguments concerning the concept of autonomy have wide ranging implications for normative political philosophy. However, much of the disagreement at this level can be traced back to the value and nature of autonomy in the ethical realm.

For this reason, the intended audience of this panel is broad. I invite submission on any topic concerning autonomy. These include, but are not restricted to, the following possible topics:

  • The role of autonomy in the justification of liberal principles.
  • The relationship between autonomy and other normative concepts (e.g. rights, equality, freedom, toleration, respect, well-being, moral status, responsibility, personal identity etc).
  • The relationship between moral, personal and political autonomy.
  • The nature and harm of heteronomy.
  • The meta-ethical foundations of autonomy.
  • The plausibility of specific accounts of autonomy (e.g. procedural, substantive, relational, hierarchical, perfectionist etc), or the work of specific authors (e.g. Christman, Oshana, Dworkin, Raz, Frankfurt, Kant etc).
  • The implications of the value of autonomy in various policy areas (e.g. mental health, upbringing, citizenship etc) and policy methods (e.g. nudges, incentives, coercion, manipulation etc).


To submit a paper for this workshop, please submit a 500 word abstract to by 10th June 2014