Open for Debate



Which crisis of trust?

Posted on 24 February 2020 by Matt Bennett

The UK Labour Party’s leadership contest is well underway after heavy defeat in the 2019 General Election. There is nothing close to consensus within the Party about why things went wrong, and still very little agreement on the most high-profile political issues. Members could be forgiven, then, for taking solace in one area of apparent
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Political Debate in the Digital Age

Posted on 10 February 2020 by Fabienne Peter

In an ideal democratic world, all citizens are invited to debate political necessities and possibilities to the best of their knowledge and to forge their country’s future in this way. In an ideal democratic world, political debate is, in other words, both inclusive and evidence-led. In a dystopian world, by contrast, political debate is exclusive
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Depending on others for knowledge

Posted on 13 January 2020 by Emily Sullivan

We depend on others. We depend on others when we are sick or when we need help moving into a new house. We also depend on others for knowledge. We learn from books written by other people. Children learn from teachers in school. If we are lost in a city, we depend on others to
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Am I Humble? Are You Humble?

Posted on 2 December 2019 by Benjamin Meagher

 If one were to boil the concept of civil public discourse down into a single idea, it may be this: avoid ad hominems. Ideas should be debated, scrutinized, and questioned, but the people making these arguments should be listened to honestly, respected, and treated with dignity. But is it possible for people to listen to
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How To Build A Safer Internet

Posted on 18 November 2019 by Natalie Alana Ashton

Earlier this year, the UK government consulted on an Online Harms White Paper that proposes a new model of social media regulation. The response to the consultation was lukewarm at best, and a consistent theme is that the white paper lacks a robust theoretical underpinning. The Carnegie UK Trust identify “an emphasis on detail” without
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Addressing ethical dilemmas in teaching for intercultural citizenship: the role of IH and conviction

Posted on 4 November 2019 by Manuela Wagner

By Michael Byram  and    Manuela Wagner In the last two blog entries we took a first look at the relationship between teaching for intercultural citizenship (applying the knowledge, skills and attitudes of intercultural competence to solve real world problems in the here and now), intellectual humility (owning the limitations of one’s knowledge), and understanding
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The role of conviction in intercultural competence/citizenship

Posted on 21 October 2019 by Manuela Wagner

In the previous blog we investigated the relationship between intellectual humility (owning the limitations of one’s knowledge) and intercultural citizenship (applying the knowledge, skills and attitudes of intercultural competence to solve real world problems in the here and now). The importance of becoming intercultural citizens, we argue, lies in the complexity of “wicked” problems of
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Do intercultural Citizens need to be intellectually humble?

Posted on 7 October 2019 by Manuela Wagner

By Manuela Wagner and Michael Byram The late Paddy Ashdown, British politician and diplomat, emphasized in 2012 “In the modern age, where everything is connected to everything, the most important thing about what you can do is what you can do with others.” (2012 https://www.youtube.com/watchtime_continue=960&v=zuAj2F54bdo  ). In 2015, 193 world leaders committed to 17 Global
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I am an atheist

Posted on 9 September 2019 by Louise Antony

I am an atheist.  That is, I believe that God does not exist.  I don’t make a point of telling people this (except when I’m writing a philosophical piece like this), but when I do tell people this, I get strong, often accusing reactions.  People challenge my moral character (“So you don’t believe in right
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How to vote well

Posted on 26 August 2019 by Kristoffer Ahlstrom-Vij

It seems elections are everywhere at the moment. Following on the heels of EU elections that for the first time saw turnout increase, the US is gearing up for a Democratic primary packed with candidates and, eventually, for a Presidential election. Meanwhile, the UK is bracing for the possibility of a general election, if the
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Putting Academic Skepticism to Work

Posted on 29 July 2019 by Scott F. Aikin

The Academic Skeptics were philosophers who modeled themselves on Socrates and his method of questioning.  When the Delphic Oracle reported that no one was wiser than him, Socrates reasoned that whatever wisdom he had was to be found in his recognizing that he does not know many important things.  And so he does not pronounce
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SHOULD WE PUBLICLY EXPRESS ANGER?

Posted on 15 July 2019 by Maxime Lepoutre

Anger is a red mist, which blinds us. It blinds us to the good in other human beings, and to the danger in violent or uncompromising action. Accordingly, expressing anger in public spaces is detrimental to the cultivation of mutual trust and to the pursuit of justice. Or so it is often said. In the
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