On the Contribution of Philosophical and Geoscientific Inquiry to Geoethics (qua Applied Ethics)

Thomas Pölzler


This paper is about the methodology of geoethics qua applied ethics. In particular, I investigate the contributions of philosophical and geoscientific inquiry. My investigation is based on a general model of geoethical research. For each stage of this model I explain the expected contribution of “the philosopher” and “the geoscientist” (assuming that they are different persons). These general considerations are illustrated by the example of a particular geoethical research question that is currently addressed in the Austrian Academy of Sciences project EE-Con. It turns out that geoethical research is a complex multi-step process that is highly contingent on philosophical assumptions. In advancing this research it will be helpful for philosophers and geoscientists to work together more closely than they have done so far.


geoethics; methodology; applied ethics; philosophy

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4401/ag-7507
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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X