West Chester University


Sustainability Research in Philosophy

Department of Philosophy

Philosophy as a discipline has only relatively recently begun to attend to the lived experiences of actual beings in the world. Traditionally, it has been a discipline much more interested in the abstract capacity for thinking and judging. The social upheaval of the late 1960s/early 1970s brought philosophy much more into the present, and a set of subfields known as "applied philosophy" has grown deep roots since then.

Environmental Philosophy (or Environmental Ethics), one of the deepest roots, is concerned with a critical examination of environmental issues. Analyzing the nature of the human being, the nature of nature, and the relationship between the two has become an increasingly popular and respected academic pursuit. The following two links collect the main websites of interest to Environmental Ethicists into to two manageable places. The first is the website of the Center for Environmental Philosophy whose Board of Directors includes two of the most established environmental philosophers working today: Eugene Hargrove and J. Baird Callicott, both of whom teach at the University of North Texas.

The other link is from a webpage of one of the hardest working moral philosophers in the field: Lawrence Hinman, of the University of San Diego, who maintains a webpage called "Ethics Update" containing links and references to the best work available on ethics in a variety of fields.

Research at WCU

Joan Woolfrey
Environmental Ethics
My expertise includes environmental ethics. I have an article in the subject coming out presently entitled "The Importance of Group Moral Agency on Environmental Responsibility and Beyond" in Social Philosophy Today, Volume 24, 2008.