The research group The Moral Brain (www.themoralbrain.be) at Ghent University (Belgium) is looking for a PhD student (m/f) for a period of four years for the FWO-project “Measuring Moral Relativism”.
Both among philosophers and among lay people, moral relativism is often met with skepticism. Its alleged flaws are that moral relativism is incoherent and that endorsing moral relativism would have undesirable consequences – such as tolerating everything. However, at present, different conceptions of moral relativism prevail and some are more coherent than others. Moreover, it is unclear if moral relativists really differ from moral non-relativists in their thinking and acting.
In this project we aim to investigate the philosophy, psychology and behavioral correlates of moral relativism.
The project consists of three topics:
1 Investigating the possibility of a coherent concept of moral relativism
2 Developing an instrument (e.g. a questionnaire) that can be used to measure the degree of moral relativism in lay people
3 Investigating the relationship between moral relativism and moral and immoral behavior (e.g., tolerance)
This project is profoundly interdisciplinary. It requires good philosophical thinking and also a great enthusiasm for conducting empirical studies. The project requires interaction with researchers in moral psychology, experimental philosophy and philosophical moral relativism.
Tasks of the PhD student
- To interact with all supervisors and collaborators of the project
- To conduct a literature review of moral relativism
- To develop a moral relativism scale
- To conduct empirical studies, both behavioral studies and survey research
- To attend conferences and workshops in the fields of experimental philosophy, moral philosophy and moral psychology
- To present the project’s results at these conferences and workshops
- To write a PhD based on articles
- Master’s degree in the Humanities, Social Sciences, or Psychological and Behavioral Sciences
- Interest in moral philosophy/ethics
- Demonstrable basic knowledge of statistics
- Demonstrable basic knowledge of experimental research methods and survey research
We offer a fulltime fixed-term position as a PhD student for a period of four years, to start at the latest in September 2013. Monthly salary +/- €1700 net.
Place of employment is:
Faculty of Law
Department of Legal History and Legal Theory
How to apply
You application should consist of:
- Cover letter
- Why you apply for this job and project (max. 1000 words)
Send your application to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline is June 20, 2013.
For questions concerning this vacancy and/or the research, please contact: email@example.com