Pierfrancesco Biasetti

Leibniz Institute of Zoo and Wildlife Research, Berlin
  •  487
    A framework of values: reasons for conserving biodiversity and natural environments
    Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics 18 (3): 527-545. 2016.
    The idea that «natural» environments should be protected is a relatively recent one. This new attitude is reflected in the activities of preservation and restoration of natural environments, ecosystems, flora and wildlife that, when scientifically based, can be defined as conservation. In this paper, we would like to examine the framework of values behind these activities. More specifically, we would like to show that there is no single specific reason that can justify conservation in each of it…Read more
  •  53
    Hohfeldian Normative Systems
    Philosophia 43 (4): 951-959. 2015.
    Hohfeldian normative system are normative systems that can be described by means of the analytical framework expounded by Hohfeld in his two famous papers on the fundamental legal conceptions. In this article I analyze some features of this particular kind of normative systems. Hohfeld’s original idea was to design a universal tool capable of describing, at the most basic level, the web of normative relationships between persons created by a system of rules. My claim is, instead, that if we take…Read more
  •  43
    In his article “Directed Duties and Inalienable Rights,” Hillel Steiner advances an argument to show that there cannot be inalienable rights. This “impossibility theorem,” as well as providing an interesting result by itself, could break the theoretical deadlock in the debate between proponents of interest theory, on the one hand, and proponents of will theory, on the other. In this article, I comment on Steiner’s argument, and I try to show why it does not work. I then expound a paradoxical out…Read more
  •  43
    Originally applied on domestic and lab animals, assisted reproduction technologies (ARTs) have also found application in conservation breeding programs, where they can make the genetic management of populations more efficient, and increase the number of individuals per generation. However, their application in wildlife conservation opens up new ethical scenarios that have not yet been fully explored. This study presents a frame for the ethical analysis of the application of ART procedures in con…Read more
  •  41
    Valuing abiotic nature
    Prometeica - Revista De Filosofía Y Ciencias 2022 (S1). 2022.
    In our everyday experience, life, environment, and nature are connected and we tend to confuse the value we assign to them. One way around this issue is to analyze our intuitions on the terraformation of other planets such as Mars. In this way, we are forced to consider whether the original abiotic nature has a value of some kind regardless of its capacity to support ecosystems and life, what kind of value this might be, and what weight it might have when compared with other values. In this cont…Read more
  •  36
    From Beauty to Love
    Environmental Philosophy 12 (2): 139-160. 2015.
    In this paper, I set myself what many people would consider an unfeasible task: finding a Kantian way to an environmental moral theory. The paper is divided in four parts. In the first part I show why looking at Kant’s moral theory in order to build an environmental theory is like trying to get blood out of a stone. I then show how it should be, instead, possible to build an environmental theory by bridging Kant’s account of aesthetic value with love of nature. In the last two parts of the paper…Read more
  •  29
    Rights, Duties, and Moral Conflicts
    Etica E Politica (2): 1042-1062. 2014.
    In this paper I would like to make a contribution to the debate on rights-talk and duties-talk relationship and priority by addressing the problem from a peculiar angle: that of moral conflicts and dilemma. My working hypothesis is that it should be possible to identify some basic and relevant normative features of rights-talk and duties-talk by observing how they modify the description of moral conflicts. I will try to show that both rights and duties posses original and irreducible normative f…Read more
  •  26
    The Ethical Assessment of Touch Pools in Aquariums by Means of the Ethical Matrix
    with Daniela Florio, Claudia Gili, and Barbara de Mori
    Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 33 (2): 337-353. 2020.
    Touch pools are popular open-topped fish tanks often found in aquariums where visitors may interact with animals, by touching and sometimes even feeding them, for educational and recreational purposes. However, although animal interactions are becoming increasingly popular in recent years, the welfare impact on the animals and the educational effectiveness of such interactions is under debate. Awareness concerning the different, and sometimes controversial, aspects connected with such interactio…Read more
  •  20
    In this work I will evaluate the functions of rights within the moral discourse, and I will point out the benefits and the characteristics of a moral theory that takes rights seriously. In the first chapter I will sketch a definition of rights as a moral category that can be distinguished from categories such as the ones of juridical rights and natural rights. In the second chapter, I will propose a hohfeldian analysis of the normative syntax of rights, and I will focus on the key problem of the…Read more
  •  11
    Rights and Persons
    In Andrea Altobrando, Takuya Niikawa & Richard Stone (eds.), The Realizations of the Self, Springer. pp. 217-232. 2018.
    One of the main reasons for justifying rights originates from the principle of the separateness of persons. However, it can been denied that persons are definite and “thick” entities, and, as such, that their supposed separateness expresses a fundamental normative principle. Should we then reconsider or abandon rights-talk? I will argue for the contrary, and claim that an extreme reductionist position towards persons is flawed. Moreover, I will claim that right-discourse can be anchored on groun…Read more
  •  11
    We are still looking for a satisfactory definition of what makes an individual being a human individual. The understanding of human beings in terms of organism does not seem to be satisfactory, because of its reductionistic flavor. It satisfies our need for autonomy and benefits our lives thanks to its medical applications, but it disappoints our needs for conscious and free, self-determination. For similar reasons, i.e. because of its anti-libertarian tone, an organicistic understanding of the …Read more
  •  10
    Richard Lewontin’s dialectical approach to biology emphasizes the relationship between the organism, its development,and the environment, providing an alternative view to the one provided by “mechanistic” and “reductionist” paradigms. This alternative view can be seen as the most lucid attempt made in recent times to apply to a particular science the dialectical tradition flowing from Engels’ Anti-Dühring and the unfinished Dialectics of Nature. By analysing Lewontin’s critique of mechanistic bi…Read more
  •  3
    Human Rights in a Plural Ethical Framework: A Questioning on the Threshold of Legal Orders
    with Ferdinando G. Menga
    Metodo. International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy 2 (1): 7-16. 2014.
  •  2
    Towards A Conservation Ethics
    Iride 33 (91): 471-486. 2020.
    Conservation ethics is a specific area of applied ethics that deals with the ethical and normative issues arising from conservation biology – that is, a multidisciplinary branch of biology dealing with the conservation of living organisms and of the interactions between those organisms and the environment. Conservation biology is – overtly, unlike many other scientific disciplines – a «value-laden» discipline. The hard questions of conservation biology – such as what biodiversity is and why we o…Read more
  • Becoming "better than human"?
    Metodo. International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy 2 (2): 279-283. 2014.