The Ethics of Influence

The Dutch Research School of Philosophy (OZSW) and TU Delft  invite PhD candidates in philosophy to register for the Summer School The Ethics of Influence to take place on July 22– 26, 2024.

Organizing university

TU Delft

Date(s)

22-26 July 2024

Location

Delft

Type of activity

5 day summer school

Primary target group

PhD Candidates

If places available, also open to

1st / 2nd year Research Master students. Interested students in participating, please send an email to assistant.director@ozsw.nl to be put on a waiting list. You will be notified asap if you can register and join the course.

Application/registration deadline

Registration open: 15 March 2024
Application deadline: 26 April 2024
Registration deadline (if selected) 17 May 2024

About the topic

Is the use of manipulative tactics ethically acceptable in influencing people, perhaps to help them improve their lifestyles or adopt more sustainable behaviour? How do we demarcate manipulative influence from other types of social influence like persuasion and coercion? To what extent do new technological developments affect the answers to those questions? Questions revolving around the ethics of influence are gaining prominence in contemporary academic, regulatory, and public discourse. The increased awareness of the ethical implications of manipulation in areas such as AI-driven mass influence (think of generative AI, deepfakes, and social bots), behaviour change technologies in fields such as health, and political communication has prompted renewed interest in these questions. This summer school is dedicated to examining these questions from the standpoint of moral and political philosophy, particularly focusing on the ethics of influence. Participants will explore how various ethical frameworks can be applied to demarcate manipulation from other types of social influence and assess its ethical dimensions within key contexts, including AI and health. Additionally, the program aims to foster interdisciplinary collaboration, bringing together insights from the behavioural science and technology with philosophical reflection.

Aim / objective

  • To gain a deeper understanding of different types of social influence, such as manipulation, coercion, persuasion, and deception, and their ethical ramifications
  • To learn to apply current normative ethical theories to analyse and evaluate behavioural change techniques
  • To reflect on how philosophers, social scientists, empirical researchers, and technologists can fruitfully work together on developing better interventions.
  • To learn how to present your research in pitches and in writing.
  • To meet other PhDs and experts in the field of ethics of influence.

Program

(subject to revision)

Day 1, Monday July 22

Day 1, TU Delft, TPM Building, Jaffalaan 5, 2628BX Delft, Room TPM-Hall H, 31.A1.210  Begin End What 
11:30 12:30 Welcome in Delft – Boat tour from the city to TU Delft
12:30 13:15 Lunch
13:15 15:00 Student introductions
15:00 15:30 Coffee break
15:30 17:00 Lecture 1 – Helma Torkamaan, Responsible Influence in AI-Driven Interactive Health Systems: Balancing Persuasion, Autonomy, and Personalization
17:00 17:30 Closing and outlook

Day 2, Tuesday July 23

Day 2, TU Delft, Echo Building,  Van Mourik Broekmanweg 5, 2628 XE Delft, Room Echo-Hall C, 29.02.050 Begin End What 
08:50 09:00 CityShuttle Delft to Summer School location
09:00 10:30 Lecture 2 – Robert Noggle, Manipulation, Nudges, and the ‘Net: Perspectives from the Mistake Account
10:30 11:00 Coffee break
11:00 12:30 Lecture 3 – Michael Klenk, Manipulation and Indifference
12:30 14:00 Lunch
14:00 15:30 Lecture 4 – Thomas Douglas, The Right Against Mental Interference
15:30 16:00 Coffee break
16:00 17:30 One-on-one meetings of participants with lecturers
19:00 21:00 Optional dinner at restaurant Vakwerkhuis (Professor Snijdersstraat 2, 2628 RA Delft, optional, own expense)

Day 3, Wednesday July 24

Day 3, TU Delft, Echo Building,  Van Mourik Broekmanweg 5, 2628 XE Delft, Room Echo-Hall C, 29.02.050 Begin End What 
08:50 09:00 CityShuttle Delft to Summer School location
09:00 10:30 Lecture  5 – Marijn Sax
10:30 11:00 Coffee break
11:00 12:30 Lecture 6 – Shlomo Cohen, Manipulation and Respect for Persons
12:30 14:00 Lunch
14:00 15:30 Lecture 7 – Marcia Baron, Manipulation: Some Conceptual Questions
15:30 16:00 Coffee break
16:00 17:30 One-on-one meetings of participants with lecturers
19:00 21:00 Conference dinner at restaurant ‘t Postkantoor (Hippolytusbuurt 14, 2611 HN Delft, included in conference fee)

Day 4, Thursday July 25

Day 4, TU Delft, Echo Building,  Van Mourik Broekmanweg 5, 2628 XE Delft, Room Echo-Hall C, 29.02.050 Begin End What 
08:50 09:00 CityShuttle Delft to Summer School location
09:00 10:30 Lecture 8 – Bart Engelen, Agency in an Age of AI-Driven Nudges
10:30 11:00 Coffee break
11:00 12:30 Lecture 9 – Kalle Grill, Methods of influence – intentions and outcomes
12:30 14:00 Lunch
14:00 15:30 Lecture 10 – Juan Pablo Bermudez, Psychological harm and the ethics of manipulation
15:30 16:00 Coffee break
16:00 17:30 One-on-one meetings of participants with lecturers

Day 5 Friday July 26

Day 5, TU Delft, TPM Building, Jaffalaan 5, 2628BX Delft, Room TPM-Hall H, 31.A1.210  Begin End What 
09:00 10:30 Student presentations of new research plan or topic
10:30 11:00 Coffe break
11:00 12:30 Student presentations of new research plan or topic
12:30 14:00 Lunch
14:00 15:30 Student presentations of new research plan or topic
15:30 17:00 Drinks and departure

Lecturers

  1. Robert Noggle (University of Central Michigan)
  2. Marcia Baron (Indiana)
  3. Michael Klenk (TU Delft)
  4. Thomas Douglas (Oxford University)
  5. Juan Pablo Bermudez (TU Delft)
  6. Kalle Grill (Umea University)
  7. Shlomo Cohen (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev)
  8. Bart Engelen (Tilburg University) & Thomas Nys (University of Amsterdam)
  9. Marijn Sax (University of Amsterdam)
  10. Helma Torkamaan (TU Delft)

Abstract submission

 

 

 

Required preparations

  1. Read the assigned materials (will be made available before the workshop).
  2. Present a brief pitch of your current research project on day 1.

Certificate / credit points

The study load for this activity is: 5 ECTS.

Costs

For PhD candidates who are a member of the OZSW and/or another Research School in the Humanities and/or 4TU Center for Ethics and Technology, the participant fee is 250 euros.

For all others the participant fee is 300 euros.

How to apply / register

PhD Candidates can submit a brief motivation (of 300 words max.) and send it to assistant.director@ozsw.nl with email subject line ‘Summer School’. Please also indicate whether you are a member of the OZSW and/or another Research School in Humanities and/or 4TU Center for Ethics and Technology.

Applying for the event does not automatically mean acceptance to the summer school. Applications are collected, and one week after the application deadline, everyone will be informed on whether or not they have been selected.

ReMa students and Postdocs can e-mail assistant.director@ozsw.nl to be added to the waiting list.

Registration/application form

If registration has been closed because the maximum amount of participants has been reached, you can submit your name to the waiting list by sending an email to assistant.director@ozsw.nl. Please also indicate whether you are a ReMa student or PhD candidate and whether you are a member of the OZSW or not.

Cancellation and registration policy

Contact info

Michael Klenk

Assistant Professor of Ethics and Philosophy of Technology

TU Delft

m.b.o.t.klenk@tudelft.nl