Dr. Annemarie Kalis

Dr. Annemarie Kalis

Associate Professor
Theoretical Philosophy
+31 30 253 4399
a.kalis@uu.nl
Projects
Project
Shaping our action space: a situated perspective on self-control (NWO-VIDI)
General project description

Our thinking about selfcontrol has long been dominated by the idea that self-control requires willpower. Unfortunately, the most important thing psychology has revealed about willpower is that we don't have much of it. A popular and promising response is to suggest that that our surroundings should be structured so that we are nudged towards prudent behaviour. However, classic nudges are one-size-fits-all interventions that aren't tailored to our individual goals and preferences. And moreover, nudging seems to involve a troubling form of manipulation, even if we do it to ourselves.

The proposed research programme will demonstrate that our crucial reliance on environmental supports need not reduce us to passive bystanders. The important innovation here involves analyzing self-control as a distinctive type of relation between agents and their environment: we will argue that agents are capable of exercising genuine self-control by shaping their own action space, where our action space is understood as the set of possibilities agents consider relevant for action and shaping involves actively changing (enlarging, restricting, recalibrating) that set. This analysis will result in a situated account of self-control.

https://selfcontrol.sites.uu.nl/

 

Role
Project Leader
Funding
NWO grant
Completed Projects
Project
A role for content and mental causation in empirical psychology (NWO-VENI) 01.02.2015 to 01.02.2019
General project description

In my VENI-project I attempt to answer a very simple but difficult question: what are attitudes? Examples of familiar types of attitudes as they are discussed in philosophy are beliefs, desires, and moral judgments. I defend a dispositional account of attitudes, according to which beliefs, desires and so on are not representations that exist ‘inside your head’, but  psychological dispositions, the ascription of which entails normative commitments. In the second part of the project I will explore what such an understanding of attitudes would mean for psychological measurement of attitudes, specifically for the science of measuring moral judgment, and what it means for our understanding of pathological attitudes.

Role
Researcher
Funding
NWO grant