•  1
    Beyond markets and states: the importance of communities
    International Social Science Journal 2011 (202): 489-500. 2011.
    status: published.
  •  3
    Why Liberals Can Favour Compulsory Attendance
    POLITICS 3 (29): 218-222. 2009.
    It has been argued that compulsory voting conflicts with a number of liberal commitments, such as free thought, free speech and privacy. This article aims to show that compulsory voting, which is actually a misnomer for compulsory attendance, can in fact be defended on a liberal basis. If understood correctly, compulsory attendance laws and liberalism fit quite easily together.
  •  2
    James Buchanan, one of the founders of Public Choice theory, applies the conceptual apparatus of economics to the public domain. This article investigates which assumptions are crucial to Buchanan’s project, concentrating on methodological individualism and the Homo Economicus model. It shows that Buchanan from time to time moves away from these economic concepts, though only in minor ways. The article also focuses on Buchanan’s normative emphasis on the role of institutions in coordinating self…Read more
  •  2
    status: published.
  •  1
    status: published.
  •  5
    The secret ballot is considered a central feature of free and fair elections all over the world. While the reasons to uphold it seem to be overwhelming, we argue that the secret ballot is only second-best at best and that a modified version of open voting might prove to be more democratic. Instead of denying the various problems and difficulties that an open system might encounter, we want to offer a genuine proposal that can avoid these numerous pitfalls. After rehearsing the various arguments …Read more
  •  3
    Talking money. How market-based valuation can undermine environmental protection
    with Stijn Neuteleers
    Ecological Economics 1117. 2015.
    In this paper, we want to analyze conceptually whether and when merely using economic discourse – talking money – can crowd out people's positive attitudes towards environmental goods and their reasons to protect them. We concentrate on the specific case of market-based or monetary valuation as an instance of ‘commodification in discourse’ and argue that it can have the same moral problems as real commodification. We aim to bring together insights from philosophy, ethics, economics and psycholog…Read more
  •  3
    This article focuses on the explanations of human cooperation that dominate the fields of psychology, philosophy, economics and other social sciences. It argues that these accounts all frame cooperation in egoistic terms and thus cannot solve the evolutionary puzzle of strong reciprocity, defined as a propensity to cooperate with others similarly disposed and to punish others who violate norms, even at a personal cost and without any prospect of present or future rewards. This article shows that…Read more
  •  19
    Why Compulsory Voting Can Enhance Democracy
    Acta Politica 42 (1): 23-39. 2007.
    Even though more than half of all citizens in the world are currently able to exercise the right to elect their leaders, many of them choose not to vote. This article considers the role of compulsory voting in order to enhance the democratic values of political participation and equality. Raising turnout considerably, it is an effective instrument to motivate citizens to express their voice in public life, thereby ensuring that their concerns will be heeded. Opponents of compulsory voting, howev…Read more
  •  5
    Solving the Paradox: The Expressive Rationality of the Decision to Vote
    Rationality and Society 18 (4): 419-441. 2006.
    The renowned paradox of voting arises when one tries to explain the decision to go out and vote in an exclusively instrumental framework. Instead of postulating that voters always derive utility from the act of voting, I want to search for the reasons that underlie the absence or presence of a preference for voting. In my noninstrumental account of expressive rationality, citizens want to express who they are and what they care about. Whether or not one votes therefore depends on the force of on…Read more
  •  40
    The ethics of nudging: An overview
    Philosophy Compass 15 (4). 2020.
    Philosophy Compass, EarlyView.
  •  34
    Nudging and Autonomy: Analyzing and Alleviating the Worries
    with Thomas Nys
    Review of Philosophy and Psychology 11 (1): 137-156. 2020.
    One of the most pervasive criticisms of nudges has been the claim that they violate, undermine or decrease people’s autonomy. This claim, however, is seldom backed up by an explicit and detailed conception of autonomy. In this paper, we aim to do three things. First, we want to clear up some conceptual confusion by distinguishing the different conceptions used by Cass Sunstein and his critics in order to get clear on how they conceive of autonomy. Second, we want to add to the existing discussio…Read more
  •  8
    The Ethics of Nudging and Beyond: Response to Commentaries
    American Journal of Bioethics 19 (10). 2019.
    Volume 19, Issue 10, October 2019, Page W9-W13.
  •  22
    Ethical Criteria for Health-Promoting Nudges: A Case-by-Case Analysis
    American Journal of Bioethics 19 (5): 48-59. 2019.
    Health-promoting nudges have been put into practice by different agents, in different contexts and with different aims. This article formulates a set of criteria that enables a thorough ethical evaluation of such nudges. As such, it bridges the gap between the abstract, theoretical debates among academics and the actual behavioral interventions being implemented in practice. The criteria are derived from arguments against nudges, which allegedly disrespect nudgees, as these would impose values o…Read more
  •  18
    What limits should there be on the areas of life that are governed by market forces? For many years, no one seriously defended the buying and selling votes for political elections. In recent years, however, this situation has changed, with a number of authors defending the permissibility of vote markets. One popular objection to such markets is that they would lead to a tyranny of wealth, where the poor are politically dominated by the rich. In a recent paper, Taylor :313–328, 2017. doi: 10.1007…Read more
  •  6
    The main goal of political philosophers is to search for a realistic utopia by taking individuals as they are and institutions, rules and laws as they might be. Instead of trying to change either individuals or institutions in order to improve society, this article argues that both strategies should be combined, since there are causal connections running both ways. Because individuals ultimately devise and uphold institutions, one should be optimistic about the possibilities of deliberately impr…Read more
  •  20
    Tolerance: A Virtue? Toward a Broad and Descriptive Definition of Tolerance
    with Thomas Nys
    Philosophy in the Contemporary World 15 (1): 44-54. 2008.
    This article focuses on the difficult issue of what exactly goes on when an individual tolerates something. It focuses on the problem of why an individual would ever choose to allow for some practice that he deerns unacceptable while having the power to do something about it. After distinguishing between different attitudes , this article argues that individuals can have various reasons for deciding to tolerate what they deern wrong. As such, we defend a broad conception of tolerance, which goes…Read more
  • The Ethics of Sex Selection for Non-Medical Reasons: A Defence of Common Sense
    with Antoon Vandevelde
    Ethical Perspectives 11 (1): 76-89. 2004.
    In the previous issue of Ethical Perspectives David Heyd defends the permissibility of sex selection for non-medical reasons. He tries to show that there is nothing inherently wrong with this practice and that allowing it does not lead to undesirable consequences. There are several difficulties with his analysis, but the main objection is that it ultimately relies on a crude form of utilitarianism. Along with some critical comments on his article, we provide ethical arguments in support of the i…Read more
  •  39
    The Sexual Ethics of HPV Vaccination for Boys
    with Jeroen Luyten and Philippe Beutels
    HEC Forum 26 (1): 27-42. 2014.
    Human papillomavirus (HPV) is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections. It is a leading cause of cervical cancer in women but the virus is increasingly being linked to several other cancers in men and women alike. Since the introduction of safe and effective but also expensive vaccines, many developed countries have implemented selective vaccination programs for girls. Some however argue that these programs should be expanded to include boys, since (1) HPV constitutes non-negligibl…Read more
  •  10
    Populaire cultuur en populaire filosofie
    Filosofie En Praktijk 32 (1): 6-18. 2011.
  •  7
    Nietzsche has often been interpreted as criticizing Buddhism for its pessimistic nihilism, since it supposedly aims at the otherworldly goal of nirvanaand the extinction of suffering. This article tries to adjust this view by focusing on the aspects of Buddhism of which Nietzsche implicitly or explicitly approves. It also relates these to some striking similarities between their views of the world, the individual, life in general and how to deal with it. This article shows that Nietzsche, in his…Read more
  •  8
    Rationality and institutions: an inquiry into the normative implications of rational choice theory
    Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics 1 (1): 185-187. 2007.
    I aim to analyze in this dissertation what a desirable basic institutional structure looks like from the perspective of rationality. While the main topic is thus normative in nature, I start by clarifying in the first part what the notion of rationality exactly entails. I do so by focusing explicitly on the economic conception of rationality, according to which a rational individual is motivated to serve his self-interest on the basis of cost-benefit calculations. Such a Homo Economicus is chara…Read more
  •  14
    Een kritische vergelijking Van twee levensfilosofieën
    Bijdragen 67 (3): 288-308. 2006.