•  307
    The Prospects for Sufficientarianism
    Utilitas 24 (1): 101-117. 2012.
    Principles of sufficiency are widely discussed in debates about distributive ethics. However, critics have argued that sufficiency principles are vulnerable to important objections. This paper seeks to clarify the main claims of sufficiency principles and to examine whether they have something distinctive and plausible to offer. The paper argues that sufficiency principles must claim that we have weighty reasons to secure enough and that once enough is secured the nature of our reasons to secure…Read more
  •  74
    How bad can a good enough parent be?
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (2): 163-182. 2016.
    Almost everyone accepts that parents must provide a good enough upbringing in order to retain custodial rights over children, but little has been said about how that level should be set. In this paper, I examine ways of specifying a good enough upbringing. I argue that the two dominant ways of setting this level, the Best Interests and Abuse and Neglect Views, are mistaken. I defend the Dual Comparative View, which holds that an upbringing is good enough when shortfalls from the best alternative…Read more
  •  65
    Parental rights and the importance of being parents
    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 22 (2): 1-15. 2017.
  •  27
    Private School, College Admissions and the Value of Education
    Journal of Applied Philosophy 35 (2): 448-461. 2016.
    In this article, I defend a proposal to cap the proportion of students admitted to elite colleges who were educated at elite, often private, schools to not more than the proportion of students who attend such schools in society as a whole. In order to defend this proposal, I draw on recent debates that pit principles of equality against principles of adequacy, and I defend the need for a pluralist account of educational fairness that includes both elements. I argue that while equality best captu…Read more
  •  17
    From Rawlsian autonomy to sufficient opportunity in education
    Politics, Philosophy and Economics 14 (1): 53-66. 2015.
    Equality of Opportunity is widely thought of as the normative ideal most relevant to the design of educational institutions. One widely discussed interpretation of this ideal is Rawls' principle of Fair Equality of Opportunity. In this paper I argue that theories, like Rawls, that give priority to the achievement of individual autonomy, are committed to giving that same priority to a principle of sufficient opportunity. Thus, the Rawlsian's primary focus when designing educational institutions s…Read more
  •  14
    The Right to be Loved, written by S. Matthew Liao (review)
    Journal of Moral Philosophy 15 (3): 367-370. 2018.
  •  11
    Sufficientarianism1
    Philosophy Compass 15 (11): 1-10. 2020.
    Philosophy Compass, EarlyView.
  •  10
    Reply to Critics
    Law, Ethics and Philosophy 5 (5): 210-230. 2018.
    In this paper I reply to my critics.
  •  6
    Parental Licensing as Harm Reduction
    Health Care Analysis 28 (4): 424-433. 2020.
    In this paper, I will argue that some prominent objections to parental licensing rely on dubious claims about the existence of a very stringent, if not indefeasible, right to parent, which would be violated by licensing. I claim that attaching such stringency to the right only makes sense if we make a number of idealising assumptions. Otherwise, it is deeply implausible. Instead, I argue that we should evaluate parental licensing policies in much the same way we would harm reduction policies. By…Read more
  •  6
    Parental rights and the importance of being parents
    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 22 (2): 119-133. 2019.
  •  4
    On Inequality (review)
    Disputatio 8 (42): 138-145. 2016.
  •  2
    Just enough: sufficiency as a demand of justice
    Edinburgh University Press. 2016.
    Liam Shields systematically clarifies and defends the political philosophy of Sufficientarianism, which insists that securing enough of some things, such as food, healthcare and education, is a crucial demand of justice. By engaging in practical debates about critical issues such as child-rearing and global justice, the author sheds light on the potential implications of suffientarianism on the social policies that affect our daily lives.
  • This chapter discusses some problems raised about sufficientarianism and offers some responses to them