Call for Papers — Moral Competence: Speaking, Listening, and Democracy

10th International Anniversary Symposium ‚Moral Competence: Speaking, Listening, and Democracy” in Konstanz, Aug. 4 – 5, 2016

This symposium will bring together international scholars and educational practitioners who are interested in the concept of moral competence, that is the ability to solve conflicts and problems on the basis of universal moral principles through deliberation and dialog rather than violence, deceit, and power.

Call for papers is open now. Proposals must be submitted until February 28, 2016, yet earlier requests for commenting on ideas and drafts are also welcome. For more details see the symposium web-site.

„Democracy starts in the head” (Ewa Nowak). Democracy — as a way of living together in the family, neighborhood, country, and world — can become true only if its members are able to solve problems and conflicts on the basis of universal moral principles through thinking and discussion, and not through violence, deceit, and power. We call this ability moral competence.

Moral competence does not develop by itself. While the moral ideal of democracy is universal and seems to be inborn, and does not need to be transmitted to the people, the development of moral competence requires education and opportunities for responsibility-taking and guided reflection. Where such education fails, democracy fails, too.

Moral competence is actually an old concept. Socrates called it „virtue.” But the research that shows that moral behavior depends not only on moral orientations but also on moral competence, is still young and hardly understood by the public.

This symposium series provides a platform for exchanging and disseminating research on the nature, relevance, development, and education of moral competence, and for advancing methods of fostering this competence in all people — young and old, poor and rich, weak and strong, illiterate and educated, locally and globally.

Those interested in learning how to foster moral competence effectively, can take part in the KMDD-workshop-seminar before the symposium (Aug. 1 – 4, 2016). The Konstanz Method of Dilemma-Discussion (KMDD) has been developed by Dr. Georg Lind in Konstanz, Germany, and has successfully used for more than two decades in many countries (Brazil, Chile, China, Columbia, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Switzerland, Turkey).

Prof. Dr. Georg Lind (em)
University of Konstanz