Thursday, July 17, 2014

Immigration to an independent Scotland - fact sheet

. . . can be found in my latest Durham Law School briefing available HERE. It attempts to clarify the known knowns, known unknowns...and unknown unknowns.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Customs at Gretna Green? Neither side is telling the whole truth on this one

. . . is my latest piece for The Conversation - here focusing on the implications for immigration law and policy if Scotland votes for independence. The essay can be found here.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Paper-hungry courts to go on a digital diet

. . . piece found here remains as true now as when published originally.

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Labour to support devolved hubs

Today we see the news that the Labour Party will transferring greater powers - and money - to English cities creating new hubs (see here). I'm delighted by this - and called for a shift in this direction in my submission to Your Britain, the Labour Party's policy consultation.

Devolution has created certain problems, but also presents new opportunities. Devolution has worked well in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. While voters in England (by far the most populated part of the UK) have shown no appetite for an English Parliament or regional assemblies, the idea of devolving greater powers to hubs harnessing the talents and potential of metropolitan areas can allow greater enterprise without added costs - nor a new layer of bureaucracy.

Now let's hope Labour wins the 2015 General Election to put these plans into practice...

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

What is wrong about the "criminal mind"?

. . . is my latest piece forthcoming in Northern Ireland Law Quarterly and available here. The abstract:

Retributivists argue for a strong link between a criminal’s mind-set at the time of an offence and our community’s response through punishment. This view claims that punishment can be justified depending on the possession of a criminal mind which can be affected by factors that may affect culpability, such as mitigating factors. Retributivism is a powerful influence on our sentencing practices reflected in policy. This article argues it is based on a mistake about what makes the criminal mind relevant for punishment. It will be argued that a currently popular view of retribution endorsed by Feinberg and Duff – ‘retributivist expressivism’ – incorrectly link punishment to a criminal’s possession of moral responsibility. This is a problem because its absence is no defence to strict liability offences, the largest subset of crimes. It is not a crime’s threat or harm to morals that is most salient, but instead its threat or harm to our rights.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Thursday, June 12, 2014

New book: "New Waves in Global Justice"



Delighted to see my new edited collection -- New Waves in Global Justice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014) -- is in print! The publisher's blurb:

New Waves in Global Justice brings together the leading future figures in global justice with essays ranging from climate change and global poverty to just war and human rights and immigration. An ideal collection for anyone interested in the most important debates in global justice, as well as those with an interest in the latest significant contributions from the leading new generation of international philosophers working in global justice.

Contents:

Series Editors' Forward
Notes on contributors
1. Introduction; Thom Brooks
2. The Pursuit of Global Political Justice, or, What's Global Democracy For?; Luis Cabrera
3. Global Poverty and an Extraordinary Humanitarian Intervention; Gerhard Øverland
4. Duties of Whom? States and the Problem of Global Justice; Milla Vaha
5. A Role for Coercive Force in the Theory of Global Justice?; Endre Begby
6. Cosmopolitan Commitments: Coercion, Legitimacy, and Global Justice; Nicole Hassoun
7. Beyond Nussbaum's Capability Approach: Future Generations and the Need for New Ways Forward; Krushil Watene
8. Cultural Injustice and Climate Change; Clare Heyward
9. Moral Grounds of the State Duty of Asylum; Eric Cavallero
10. MigrationMatch.Com: Towards a World Migration Organization?; Patti Tamara Lenard
11. NGO Accountability: The Civil Society Model for NGO-Stakeholder Relationships; Alice Obrecht
12. Global Justice and Global Philosophy; Thom Brooks
Index

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Many thanks to Durham University's Students' Union

... for kindly awarding me two prizes. I won a prize for runner-up for best feedback and won the Lecturer of the Year award for my faculty (details here). I cannot believe my good luck and so grateful to my excellent students!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

I got it right: no 'Polish precedent' for Romanian and Bulgarian migration to UK

. . . as I argued for here and now confirmed by latest official statistics. Of course, this is all contra the claims by Migration Watch - widely cited by the right wing press - that the UK would see a tidal wave of 50,000 migrants. Time for them to own up to getting it wrong?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Palgrave Ethics and Public Policy series

The Palgrave Ethics and Public Policy book series will publish high quality scholarly research monographs and edited books aimed at academics and postgraduates. We welcome timely contributions from a broad range of disciplines and methodological approaches. The volumes in this series will explore the relation between ethics and public policy across a wide range of issues, including abortion, capital punishment, citizenship, climate change, drug offending, euthanasia, health care, immigration, multiculturalism, prostitution, and terrorism.

Interested authors should contact me directly me here

"Philosophy Never Sleeps!"

. . . has been my personal motto -- perhaps mantra -- for many years. Graduate student days saw all-nighters an at least once, sometimes twice, per week occurence. While skipping sleep altogether like that is now past history, I've regularly gone for long spells on only 4 or 5 hours of sleep over a week.

Perhaps now I should new studies suggesting sleep is not taking seriously enough - and that even if should be prescribed (see here). Philosophy might never sleep - there is always more to say, to develop, to engage - but perhaps philosophers should.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Nussbaum conference in Durham [UPDATE]

I’m hosting a special two day conference “Overcoming Intolerance: Nussbaum and Her Critics” in the Kenilworthy Room at St Mary’s College, Durham on 23rd—24th May 2014. The conference will explore key themes and issues in the work of Martha C. Nussbaum (Chicago).

The first day will have four papers focusing on her recent The New Religious Intolerance: Overcoming the Politics of Fear in an Anxious Age (Harvard University Press, 2012). Speakers include Professor Maleiha Malik (Law, KCL), Professor Peter Jones (Politics, Newcastle), Dr Clare Chambers (Philosophy, Cambridge) and me. Nussbaum will reply to each paper before the floor is opened for questions.
 
The second day will have two roundtables exploring wider issues and their implications. The first is “Political Emotions” led by Sara Protasi (Philosophy, Yale) with responses by Dr Phil Horky (Classics, Durham) and Nussbaum. The second roundtable is on “Capabilities and Political Liberalism” led by Professor Mozaffar Qizilbash (Economics, York) with responses by Dr Maria Dimova-Cookson (SGIA, Durham) and Nussbaum.

The conference website – with registration information – can be found HERE 

Overcoming Intolerance: Nussbaum and Her Critics
23rd—24th May 2014
Durham University

Friday, 23rd May 2014
St Mary’s College, Durham University
 
10.30am – tea/coffee
10.45—11.00am – welcome (Thom Brooks & Mozaffar Qizilbash)

 Paper 1
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
11.00—11.30am – Maleiha Malik (KCL)
11.30—11.40am – Martha Nussbaum, ‘Reply’
11.40am—12.00noon – discussion
 
Paper 2
Chair: Mozaffar Qizilbash (York)
12.00—12.30pm – Peter Jones (Newcastle)
12.30—12.40pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’
12.40—1.00pm – discussion
 
1.00—2.00pm – lunch
 
Paper 3
Chair: Anna Jobe (Durham)
2.00—2.30pm – Thom Brooks (Durham)
2.30—2.40pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’
2.40—3.00pm – discussion
 
3.00—3.30pm – tea/coffee
 
Paper 4
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
3.30—4.00pm – Clare Chambers (Cambridge)
4.00—4.10pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’

4.10—4.30pm – discussion
4.30—5.00pm – round-up/close
 
Saturday, 24th May 2014
St Mary’s College, Durham University
10.30—11.00am – tea/coffee
11.00am – brief welcome (Thom Brooks & Mozaffar Qizilbash)
 
11.00—12.30noon - Panel 1 on Political Emotions
Sara Protasi (Philosophy, Yale)
Phillip Horky (Classics, Durham)
Martha Nussbaum (Chicago)
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
 
12.30—1.30pm – lunch
 
1.30—3.30pm - Panel 2 on Capabilities and Political Liberalism
Maria Dimova-Cookson (SGIA, Durham)
Mozaffar Qizilbash (Economics, York)
Martha Nussbaum (Chicago)
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
 
3.00-3.30/4.00pm close
 
 
Generous financial support received from: Harvard University Press and Durham University’s Durham Law School (and its Centre for Criminal Law and Criminal Justice; Islam, Law and Modernity Group; Law and Global Justice Group), the Institute for Advanced Studies, Philosophy Department and School of Government and International Affairs.

Monday, May 05, 2014

Hegel Society of Great Britain conference - Hegel's Political Philosophy

The 2014 HSGB conference is now open for registration. The theme is Hegel's Political Philosophy, and the speakers are as follows:

Thursday 4th September
1.30-3.00 Dean Moyar (Johns Hopkins, Baltimore): “Law as the Public Conscience: A Hobbesian Theme in Hegel’s Philosophy of Right”
3.30-5.00 Jean-François Kervégan (Paris 1): “Hegel’s Political Epistemology”
5.30-7.00 Frank Ruda (Freie Universität, Berlin): “What Is to Be Done (with Hegel’s Monarch)?”

Friday 5th September
9.30-11.00 Rahel Jaeggi (Humboldt, Berlin): “Normativity and History”
11.30-1.00 Sebastian Stein (Heidelberg): “Untouchable Dogma or Historical Relativity? On the Revisability of the Philosophy of Right’s Institutions”
Susanne Hermann-Sinai (Leipzig / Oxford): “Does Hegel have a Notion of Practical Knowledge?”
2.00-3.30 Thom Brooks (Durham): “Justice for Stakeholders: Lessons from Hegel’s Philosophy of Right”

The conference will take place at Magdalene College, Cambridge. The deadline for registration is 1st August 2014.

For further details, and to register, please go to:
http://hegel-society.org.uk/conferences/2014

Friday, May 02, 2014

Nussbaum conference at Durham University on 23-24 May 2014


I’m hosting a special two day conference “Overcoming Intolerance: Nussbaum and Her Critics” in the Kenilworthy Room at St Mary’s College, Durham on 23rd—24th May 2014. The conference will explore key themes and issues in the work of Martha C. Nussbaum (Chicago).

The first day will have four papers focusing on her recent The New Religious Intolerance: Overcoming the Politics of Fear in an Anxious Age (Harvard University Press, 2012). Speakers include Professor Maleiha Malik (Law, KCL), Professor Peter Jones (Politics, Newcastle), Dr Clare Chambers (Philosophy, Cambridge) and me. Nussbaum will reply to each paper before the floor is opened for questions.

The second day will have two roundtables exploring wider issues and their implications. The first is “Political Emotions” led by Sara Protasi (Philosophy, Yale) with responses by Dr Phil Horky (Classics, Durham) and Nussbaum. The second roundtable is on “Capabilities and Political Liberalism” led by Professor Mozaffar Qizilbash (Economics, York) with responses by Dr Maria Dimova-Cookson (SGIA, Durham) and Nussbaum.

The conference website – with registration information – will be up and running shortly. Please note this in your diaries and spread the word!
 
 
 
Overcoming Intolerance: Nussbaum and Her Critics
 
23rd—24th May 2014
Durham University
 
Friday, 23rd May 2014
St Mary’s College, Durham University
 
10.30am – tea/coffee
10.45—11.00am – welcome (Thom Brooks & Mozaffar Qizilbash)
 
Paper 1
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
11.00—11.30am – Maleiha Malik (KCL)
11.30—11.40am – Martha Nussbaum, ‘Reply’
11.40am—12.00noon – discussion
 
Paper 2
Chair: Mozaffar Qizilbash (York)
12.00—12.30pm – Peter Jones (Newcastle)
12.30—12.40pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’
12.40—1.00pm – discussion
 
1.00—2.00pm – lunch
 
Paper 3
Chair: Anna Jobe (Durham)
2.00—2.30pm – Thom Brooks (Durham)
2.30—2.40pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’
2.40—3.00pm – discussion
 
3.00—3.30pm – tea/coffee
 
Paper 4
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
3.30—4.00pm – Clare Chambers (Cambridge)
4.00—4.10pm – Martha Nussbaum (Chicago), ‘Reply’
4.10—4.30pm – discussion
 
4.30—5.00pm – round-up/close
 
Saturday, 24th May 2014
St Mary’s College, Durham University
 
10.30—11.00am – tea/coffee
11.00am – brief welcome (Thom Brooks & Mozaffar Qizilbash)
 
11.00—12.30noon
Panel 1 on Political Emotions
Sara Protasi (Philosophy, Yale)
Phillip Horky (Classics, Durham)
Martha Nussbaum (Chicago)
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
 
12.30—1.30pm – lunch
 
1.30—3.30pm
Panel 2 on Capabilities and Political Liberalism
Maria Dimova-Cookson (SGIA, Durham)
Mozaffar Qizilbash (Economics, York)
Martha Nussbaum (Chicago)
Chair: Thom Brooks (Durham)
 
3.00-3.30/4.00pm close
 
Generous financial support received from: Harvard University Press and Durham University’s Durham Law School (and its Centre for Criminal Law and Criminal Justice; Islam, Law and Modernity Group; Law and Global Justice Group), the Institute for Advanced Studies, Philosophy Department and School of Government and International Affairs.
 

 

 

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Cornwall and the "Life in the UK" citizenship test

My recent article about the Life in the UK citizenship test and the need for its revision post-recognition of the Cornish as a protected minority is still receiving coverage...at least in Cornwall.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

APA Berger Memorial Prize: Call for Nominations

. . . can be found here.

The Berger Memorial Prize in the philosophy of law, a prize established by the APA in memory of Professor Fred Berger of the University of California at Davis, is awarded every other year in odd years. The prize was made possible by gifts to the APA from Professor Berger's friends, relatives, and colleagues following his untimely death in 1986. The prize is awarded to an outstanding published article in philosophy of law by a member of the association.

Award

The prize, including a cash award of $500, is presented at the meeting of the Pacific Division of the APA, of which Professor Berger was an active member. If suitable arrangements can be worked out between the winning author and the program committee for the Pacific Division meeting, he/she will be invited to participate in a special symposium on the topics of the winning article at that meeting.
Frequency: Every 2 years
Award Amount: $500
Last Award: 2013
Next Award: 2015
Next deadline: June 15, 2014

Criteria

Submitted articles may have been published in philosophy serials, law reviews, political science serials, serials in other related fields, or regularly published anthologies such as Nomos or AMINTAPHIL volumes. Articles or chapters which have been published only in non-serial or non-periodical collections or anthologies are excluded. Articles published in 2012 or 2013 are eligible for consideration for the 2015 prize. Members of the APA committee on philosophy and law who will select the winning article are not eligible for consideration. Eligibility of published articles is governed by the date shown on the publication, not by the date of actual printing or mailing. Questions may be directed to prizes@apaonline.org.

Nominations

The nominee must be an APA member in good standing. Nominators need not verify the author's membership status in the APA, but they may wish to suggest that those whose work they are nominating join or renew their membership with the APA. Nominations may be made by the author, the editor, another APA member, or any other individual. If an article was originally published in a language other than English, that submission should be accompanied by a translation into English of quality suitable for publication.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Alcohol and Public Policy

. . . is the title of my latest book found here. The blurb:

"Alcohol and its consumption is a major topic for public policy-making. Growing awareness of alcohol-related health problems among the general public has led to high levels of interest in alcohol consumption and its impact on society. This innovative collection of new perspectives on this critically important issue is informed by a leading group of international social scientists. Topics covered include alcoholism, the family, minimum pricing, paternalistic controls, and Socially Responsible Investment programs. Together, these essays reveal illuminating new insights into how public policy might be improved.

This book was originally published as a special issue of Contemporary Social Science."


The contents:

Foreword David Canter 

 1. Introduction Thom Brooks (revised)

 2. Combatting alcohol addiction: findings from the United States Daniel Yalisove  (new)

 3. Alcohol, risks and public policy Thom Brooks (new)

 4. Socially Responsible Investment in the alcohol industry: an assessment of investor attitudes and ethical arguments Boudewijn de Bruin 

 5. Two decades and a Category 5 hurricane later…tracking homeless substance abusers in New Orleans Rachel L. Rayburn 

 6. Alcohol and the family Woody Caan 

 7. The borders of booze Britain: alcohol controls and nationality Tom Henri 

 8. Minimum pricing for alcohol: a Millian perspective Ben Saunders 

 9. Respectable drinkers, sensible drinking, serious leisure: single-malt whisky enthusiasts and the moral panic of irresponsible Others Karl Spracklen 

 10. Storytelling: Walter Benjamin and recovery from alcoholism Joel C. Beaupre

I should add the book includes two never before published essays -- one by me on risk

Sunday, April 27, 2014

CFP: Thom Brooks, "Punishment": Author Meets Critics special issue


Philosophy and Public Issues

Call for papers

 

Symposium: The Philosophy of Punishment

With a discussion of Thom Brooks’s Punishment (Routledge 2012)

Guest Editor: Daniele Santoro

 

Submission Deadline

Long Abstract (1,000 words max): 1 June, 2014

Full paper (10,000 words max, upon acceptance): 15 September, 2014

 

Invited Contributors

Anthony Duff (University of Minnesota), Michelle Dempsey (Villanova University), Richard Lippke (Indiana University), and Thom Brooks (Durham University)

 

Aims and Background

While it seems obvious that crimes ought to be punished, it is far from being clear how crimes ought to be punished. The practice or institution of punishment is an obligation imposed on single individual or group of people in response to a violation of some norm. As any form of coercion, punishment, to be justified, must be issued by a legitimate authority and match a set of constraints. 

There is a growing and rich discussion on the topic, which this special volume of Philosophy and Public Issues wants to capture and disclose. We encourage submissions of original papers that philosophically explore aspects of the topic of punishment from a moral, political, or legal perspective.

We expect original contributions discussing problems such as (but not limited to):

- the definition of punishment;

- the justification of punishment;

- the distribution of punishment;

- views of criminalization;

- hybrid or pluralistic theories of punishment;

- capital and other kinds of punishments;

 

… or any other relevant topic, subject to the Editors’ approval.

 

This special issue will include a discussion of Thom Brooks’s Punishment (Routledge 2013), with commentaries by Anthony Duff (University of Minnesota), Michelle Dempsey (Villanova University), Richard Lippke (Indiana University), and Daniele Santoro (Luiss), followed by Thom Brooks’s replies.

 

Submission Details

Please send a (.rtf, .doc or .docx) file containing a long abstract (1,000 words max) and a title, prepared for blind review with all revealing references to the author removed. All personal information (name, affiliation, and contact) must be submitted separately, along with a short abstract (200 words max). Deadline for abstract submission is 1 June, 2014. Decisions will be made within a month.

 

Upon notification of acceptance, you will be invited to submit the full paper (10,000 words max) no later than September 15, 2014. The volume will be published at the end of this year.

All material should be submitted on line: http://fqp.luiss.it/submit/

 

Further Inquiries

Please direct any queries about this call for papers to PPI’s Editors at editorppi@luiss.it. More information on the Philosophy and Public Issues can be found at http://ppi.luiss.edu.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Cornish pasties must be added to the UK citizenship test

. . . is my latest piece for The Conversation and can be found here.

The piece examines a perhaps surprising consequence of the recent recognition of the Cornish as having protected minority status --- serious changes to the UK citizenship test are required!

On Punitive Restoration

. . . is my new essay for the public policy think tank Demos' Demos Quarterly and can be found here. I argue that the twin challenges of improving public confidence about criminal justice while improving crime reduction --- often in tension with each other --- can be achieved through restructuring the uses of restorative justice.

Punitive restoration is about expanding the options for restorative conferences --- to include a more punitive element --- in order to increase the applicability of restorative justice to more cases in the criminal justice system. The recommended options include suspended sentences and intensive rehabilitation under specified conditions.

My "impact essay" (a column connecting academia with policy) is included in an issue with articles by Mark Thompson (former Director-General of the BBC), senior political journalists Adam Boulton and Mary Riddell, and Trevor Phillips (the first chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission).

Two senior positions at Durham University's Law School

. . . in the areas of Corporate or Commercial Law at Chair and Reader levels can be found here:


http://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/AIQ018/chair-in-corporate-or-commercial-law/

 

http://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/AIQ008/readership-in-corporate-or-commercial-law/

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The "Life in the United Kingdom" Citizenship Test: Is It Unfit for Purpose?

. . . is the name of my report - the only comprehensive examination of the UK's citizenship test available. I uncovered serious problems throughout -- and highlight solutions that might fix them in future tests. My report launch has now broken the 4,000 views barrier:



On book recommendations

I have recently come across a page on Goodreads listing my books. The website allows users to comment and recommend books - including offer 'stars' and so on in a format different from what can be found on Amazon.

Out of interest, how to readers receive recommendations on books? Is there another alternative?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

What is the most important topic political scientists are not studying?

A recent piece in Perspectives on Politics by Professor Debra Javeline (found here) claims the answer is "adapting to climate change"(?). While I'm delighted to be noted as one of the good (or just better?) academics in the field, it is a pity she overlooked my other work in this area which does engage with the adaptation literature. Still, a thought-provoking piece even if I take issue with some of its claims.