Daniel Saar, M.A.
- since december 2011: PhD-Studies in Philosophy at Ruhr-Universität Bochum
- since SoSe 2011: Student Research Assistant at the Chair of Prof. Dr. Corinna Mieth at Ruhr-Universität Bochum, subsequently Graduate Assistant
- 2006 - 2011: Studies in Philosophy and German Philology (Contemporary German Literature) in Bochum and Göttingen (supported by a scholarship of Georg-August-Universität Göttingen)
- Weltarmut und die Verantwortung von Konsumenten, in: Zimmerer, Gabriel (ed.): Neue Perspektiven auf den Verantwortungsbegriff (acceptet, estimated 2013).
- Review of: Thomas Pogge, World Poverty and Human Rights. Cosmopolitan Responsibilities and Reforms (German Edition, 2011), in: Zeitschrift für philosophische Forschung 66(2), 2012, 355-356.
- Globale Armut und der Grad der Mitverantwortung, in: Juventas. Zeitschrift für junge Philosophie 1(2), 2011, 164-173.
PhD Project: Consumer Responsibility and World Poverty
Precarious living and working conditions in producing countries and the ecological threat of climate change affect that economic activity is morally challenged increasingly. With respect to the negative impacts of the global economic system meanwhile not only corporations but also frequently consumers are confronted with demands to assume environmental and social responsibility. The Final Report of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg in 2002 for example, which identifies the reduction of world poverty as the central global task, draws up a program of action for environmentally and socially sustainable change of production and consumption patterns and thus involves consumers in the responsibility for the achievement of sustainable development and the reduction of global poverty in a substantial way.
But is it at all reasonable to ascribe consumers a responsibility concerning such devastating global problems as the world poverty problem? What exactly can be meant when a responsibility of consumers is mentioned? Against the background that consumer responsibility is not only claimed increasingly, but also gains importance in practice, it is surprising that there is no adequate theory of consumer responsibility. Overall, it is a quite new phenomenon that philosophical ethics deals with the behaviour of consumers.
The PhD-project pursues two goals: First, it asks how a theory of consumer responsibility has to be designed appropriately. In what way and on what basis, consumers can be ascribed responsibility? Is the assumption of consumer responsibility voluntarily (supererogatory) or can it be reasonably required? What might be expected by consumers and what would constitute moral excessive demands? Is the assumption of consumer responsibility to be understood as a helping act, as restitution or compensation, or is it based on a special relationship or special social roles or positions? Secondly, the question of the responsibility of consumers is to be integrated profitably in the debate on the world poverty problem, which recently is a central challenge in practical philosophy – but ignores the question of the responsibility of consumers radically.