John O'Neill

John O'Neill
The University of Manchester · Department of Philosophy

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66
Publications
10,708
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Publications

Publications (66)
Article
Questions about monetary compensation for environmental damage have been at the centre of debates on the defensibility of the monetary valuation of environmental goods. In conflicts about environmental justice, offers of monetary compensations for environmental damage can elicit apparently inconsistent responses. On the one hand, offers of monetary...
Research
Full-text available
O’Neill, J., C. Carter, K. Ekeli and W. Kenyon (2008) Representing Diversity in Participatory Approaches, PATH Policy Research Brief. Aberdeen, UK: Macaulay Institute. http://www.macaulay.ac.uk/socioeconomics/research/path/PATH%20Policy%20Brief.pdf
Chapter
Last person arguments form a class of arguments for the extension of the domain of beings and states which have intrinsic value beyond those of human and sentient beings. The arguments appeal to thought experiments about destructive actions by the last existing person or persons on parts of nonhuman nature. They appeal to a moral intuition that the...
Article
This position runs up against a view which runs in entirely the opposite direction, that our environmental problems have their source not in a failure to apply market norms rigorously enough, but in the very spread of these market mechanisms and norms. The source of environmental problems lies in part in the spread of markets both in real geographi...
Article
Full-text available
Is logical empiricism incompatible with a critical social science? The longstanding assumption that it is incompatible has been prominent in recent debates about welfare economics. Sen’s development of a critical and descriptively rich welfare economics is taken by writers such as Putnam, Walsh and Sen to involve the excising of the influence of lo...
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Holland argues that environmental deliberation should return to classical questions about the nature of the good life, understood as the worthwhile life. Holland's proposal contrasts with the revived hedonist conception of the good life which has been influential on environmentalism. The concept of the worthwhile life needs to be carefully distingu...
Article
ABSTRACT Is a scientific attitude to the natural world an obstacle to an appreciation of its value? This paper argues that it is not. Following Aristotle and Marx, it maintains that, properly pursued, science has value because it enables us to contemplate that which is wonderful and beautiful. However, the paper concedes that, as actually practised...
Article
ABSTRACT In a recent paper Alan Carter argues that the claim that workers’co-operatives merely replace exploitation by employers with ‘self-exploitation’is nonsense: the term ‘self-exploitation’is self-contradictory. He maintains that the only form of exploitation to which a workers’co-operative may be said to be subject is ‘market-exploitation’by...
Chapter
Meta-ethics and normative ethicsIntrinsic valueIs the rejection of meta-ethical realism compatible with an environmental ethic?Objective value and the flourishing of living thingsHuman sensibilities and environmental valuesEnvironmental ethics through thick and thin
Chapter
In a series of papers in Economica between 1941 and 1944 (Hayek 1941, 1942-1944) Hayek’s criticisms of socialist planning were directed at a set of assumptions about the social world and social science that he took to partly underpin the socialist project. Hayek’s epistemic arguments against planning and in defence of the market are deployed agains...
Article
We live in a world confronted by mounting environmental problems; increasing global deforestation and desertification, loss of species diversity, pollution and global warming. In everyday life people mourn the loss of valued landscapes and urban spaces. Underlying these problems are conflicting priorities and values. Yet dominant approaches to poli...
Article
The liberal doctrine that public institutions be neutral between conceptions of the good is invoked in response to the pluralism of modern society. The response can take two distinct forms: dialogical – pluralism requires a neutral public space for conversation; and non-dialogical pluralism requires a contractual sphere which allows cooperation wit...
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The paper addresses two questions central to recent environmental political thought: Can a reduction in consumption be rendered compatible with a maintenance or improvement of well-being? What are the conditions for a sense of citizenship that crosses different generations? The two questions have elicited two conflicting responses. The first has be...
Article
This paper examines the epistemological arguments about markets and planning that emerged in a series of unpublished exchanges between Hayek and Neurath. The exchanges reveal problems for standard accounts of both the socialist calculation debates and logical empiricism. They also raise questions concerning the sources of ignorance and uncertainty...
Article
The needs principle—that certain goods should be distributedaccording to need—as been central to much socialist andegalitarian thought. It is the principle which Marx famously takesto be that which is to govern the distribution of goods in the higherphase of communism. The principle is one that Marx himself tookfrom the Blanquists. It had wider cur...
Article
Hayek's epistemic arguments against planning were aimed not just against socialism but also the tradition of ecological economics. The concern with the physical preconditions of economic activity and defence of non-monetary measures in economic choice were expressions of the same rationalist illusion about the scope of human knowledge that underpin...
Article
Logical positivism is widely associated with an illiberal technocratic view of politics. This view is a caricature. Some members of the left Vienna circle were explicit in their criticism of this conception of politics. In particular, Neurath’s work attempted to link the internal epistemological pluralism and tolerance of logical empiricism with po...
Article
Hayek's epistemic arguments against central planning and in defence of market economies have recently been redeployed by some market-socialists against more decentralized models of non-market socialism. This paper considers the cogency of these arguments through an examination of an unpublished exchange in the socialist calculation debates between...
Article
One response to Dupré’s criticism of rational choice theory’s unifying aspirations is that it is aimed at over-ambitious versions of the theory. Immodesty about the scope of rational choice theory may look more plausible given suitable modesty in assumptions about the rational agent. The paper examines problems with one immodest version of the theo...
Article
An important but neglected difference between modern utilitarian and Kantian ethics on one side and virtues ethics on the other concerns the relation of good and evil. By taking virtues to be ethical primitives, standard versions of virtues ethics entail that some goods are logically evil-dependent. That is, at least some central virtues cannot be...
Article
"Nature" and "wilderness" are central normative categories of environmentalism. Appeal to those categories has been subject to two lines of criticism: from constructivists who deny there is something called "nature" to be defended; from the environmental justice movement who point to the role of appeals to "nature" and "wilderness" in the appropria...
Article
One influential approach to environmental problems holds that their solution requires the definition of full liberal property rights over goods that will enable their value to be registered in actual or hypothetical markets. How adequate is that solution? In this paper I offer reasons to be sceptical, by placing recent liberal arguments in the cont...
Article
What is it for a situation to be worse or better for someone? This paper considers an answer to that question which draws on a distinction implicit in a work of Chekhov between a happy and a worthwhile life. It examines the implications of that answer for recent debates about equality, outlining the virtues of a virtues-based egalitarianism.
Article
The modern world has witnessed the introduction of markets mechanisms and norms into spheres of life that previously have been protected from markets. Non-market goods including the environment are being subjected to direct commodification or to the introduction of market norms. The appropriate response is to resist the disappearance of proper boun...
Article
Landscapes are public environments in which different communities and individuals dwell and which matter to them in ways which are not always consistent. As such they are open to strong conflicts about what the future of landscapes ought to be and who has an entitlement to involvement in a decision about that future. How should such conflicts be re...
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Environmental problems have an ethical dimension. They are not just about the efficient use of resources. Justice in the distribution of environmental goods and burdens, fairness in the processes of environmental decision-making, the moral claims of future generations and non-humans, these and other ethical values inform the responses of citizens t...
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The main argument of this paper is that weak comparability of values should be seen as one characteristic feature of ecological economics. The formal properties of the concepts of strong comparability (implying strong or weak commensurability) and weak comparability (implying incommensurability) will be clarified. Multicriteria evaluation offers th...
Article
Recent work in the area of mathematics education has been informed by the process writing movement in language education and by challenges to dominant literacies in school subjects including mathematics and science. Specifically, writers concerned with the exclusion of many children and adults from dominant mathematical practices have argued that n...
Article
Recent rhetorical critiques of philosophy and science assume a contrast between rational argument and rhetoric that is inherited from an antirhetorical tradition in philosophy. This article rejects that assumption. Rhetoric is compatible with reasoned discourse in a strong sense originally outlined by Aristotle. Rhetorical analysis reveals the inad...
Article
One response to Dupré's criticism of rational choice theory's unifying aspirations is that it is aimed at over-ambitious versions of the theory. Immodesty about the scope of rational choice theory may look more plausible given suitable modesty in assumptions about the rational agent. The paper examines problems with one immodest version of the theo...
Article
Environmental managers manage without prices. In resolving day to day conflicts decisions are normally made without appeal to monetary values or any other single common measure. However, this is not how the neoclassical economic theory says it should be. A gap exists between the actual practice of management and the ideal practice offered by econom...
Article
Fukuyama's influential book The End of History and the Last Man presents an Hegelian picture of history as the story of the struggle for recognition. Modern liberal society is the end of history since it resolves that struggle. However, unlike Hegel, Fukuyama assumes recognition is pursued for its own sake. The assumption lends plausibility to a ma...
Article
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Abstract The subject of this paper is the integrity of nature over time - 'diachronic integrity'. The argument of the paper is that any serious attempt to address conservation problems - the kinds of problems faced by environmentalmanagers the world over, needs to operate with an eye to some principle of diachronic integrity (although not solely wi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This study (dating from 1996) presents a critical survey of current theory and practice for costing environmental damage. Its purpose was to contribute to the development of policy-making and decision-making tools which are answerable to budgetary constraints, robust in the face of challenge, and credible to the general public. The Full Report is...
Chapter
Both friends and critics of Marxism standardly subscribe to what might be characterized as the Andy Pandy theory of the relationship between Marx and Engels. I refer here to a children’s programme, thankfully no more, in which the two central characters, Andy Pandy and Teddy, live in the same box and dance the same steps to the same tune: however,...
Article
This paper responds to Pope John Paul's Veritatis Splendor. It defends one of its claims, that some human acts are intrinsically evil, and relates it to another, that one should live in truth. It outlines two versions of the idea of living in truth and argues that the Thomist position defended in the encyclical is to be preferred. However, the pape...
Article
Public choice theory offers a challenge from within standard neo‐classical theory to both sides of recent debates on the use of cost‐benefit analysis in environmental policy‐making. Both defenders and critics of cost‐benefit analysis assume that political actors are benign channels for the formulation and implementation of environmental policy. The...
Article
ABSTRACT It is widely supposed by both its proponents and critics that communitarianism is committed to the defence of lies of nationhood: the nation forms a surviving communal attachment in a world in which the individual is otherwise denuded of ties of community. I argue in this paper that this assumption is mistaken. It depends on a romantic ima...
Article
The Argument A scientific work presupposes a body of texts that are a condition for its intelligibility. This paper shows that the study of intertextual reference — of the ways a text indicates its relation to other texts — provides a fruitful perspective in the study of science that deserves more attention than it has hitherto received. The paper...
Article
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There is a special problem with respect to our obligations to future generations which is that we can benefit or harm them but that they cannot benefit or harm us. Goodin summarizes the point well: No analysis of intergenerational justice that is cast even vaguely in terms of reciprocity can hope to succeed. The reason is the one which Addison… put...
Article
The problem of justifying ethical concern for future generations and non-human entities has been and will continue to be, at the centre of recent discussions of the environment and pathways to sustainable human development. This book develops an Aristotelian account of welfare that reveals the relationship between the good of non-humans and future...
Article
One of the paradoxes of recent political and economic theory is that, in spite of a period of extended economic difficulty, there has been a growing consensus concerning the virtues of the market economy. In particular, there has been a trend in socialist theory to argue that not only are socialism and the market not incompatible, but that some ver...
Article
In this paper I distinguish two problems of induction: a problem of the uniformity of nature and a problem of the variety of nature. I argue that the traditional problem of induction that Popper poses—the problem of uniformity—is not that which is relevant to science. The problem relevant to science is that of the variety of nature.
Article
In a recent article, ‘Marxism and Radical Democracy’,1Femia argues that Marxism is incompatible with radical democracy. In so doing he specifically reiterates2 a now common claim that the notion of scientific socialism defended by Marx and Engels and prevalent in the Second International is anti-democratic. This claim has not only been made by crit...
Article
What is the source of our environmental problems? What is their solution? Mainstream economic theory has straightforward answers to thes e questions: their source lies in the fact that preferences for environmental goods are not re vealed in market prices; their solution is to ensure that they are. These answers have been influ ential on national a...

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Projects (2)
Project
Critical Epistemology and towards a Critique of Ecological Political Economy - an immanent reflexive materialism for our times. (This is a complex programme, open to the diverse languages of value and nature, from Merlin to eco-feminism, to Sraffa ... and back again. Or, very simply: The Human Condition: Back to the Old Old Story, in old and new skins).