Department of Philosophy

Ethics and Explanation

Project Leaders: Uri Leibowitz and Neil Sinclair

An AHRC funded 3 year project.


From Explanation to Ethics and Back Again


Project Summary

Moral Philosophy investigates such things as the moral decisions of individuals and organisations, moral education and moral development, moral language, and moral facts. Moral philosophers seek to understand, and to communicate their understanding of, these things. To do so, they construct moral theories. Moral theories are successful if they provide a good explanation of the things with which they are concerned (e.g., the rightness/wrongness of actions; the relation between moral judgment and motivation). It is clear, then, that an account of what a good moral explanation consists in is important to moral theorising.

The underlying motivation for this project is that the notion of moral explanation is as central to moral theorising as the notion of scientific explanation is to science. The aim of the project is twofold. First we seek to improve our understanding of morality by investigating the nature of moral explanation. Our second aim is to enhance our understanding of the very nature of explanation. Moral explanations have been neglected by those investigating the nature of explanation. Proceeding from explanation to ethics and back again promises to enhance our understanding of both ethics and explanation.

Further Information

For further details on this project please contact one of the project leaders:

Dr Neil Sinclair
t: (0)115 951 3428

Dr Uri Leibowitz
t: (0)115 951 5849



Event Details

Next event: 12 October 2015

Ethics and explanation workshop

Past events

The first of a three annual conferences took place in January 2013 - Ethics and Explanation 2013 conference website.



Each year the AHRC provides funding from the Government to support research and postgraduate study in the arts and humanities. Only applications of the highest quality are funded and the range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK. For further information on the AHRC, please go to:




Department of Philosophy

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

Contact details