Second Workshop of the European Network on Social Ontology (ENSO)

31 05 2011

Luiss Guido Carli University, Rome, Italy, September 21-23, 2011


Social Ontology: Metaphysical and Empirical Perspectives

The analysis of the structure of social facts, social beliefs and social practices is one of the key topics of current research in a number of disciplines such as philosophy, cognitive science, economics, sociology, psychology, biology, legal theory, history and political science. The European Network on Social Ontology (ENSO) aims to provide a platform for interdisciplinary discussion and exchange among scholars working in the field, as well as to initiate and to coordinate future research activities at the European level. Following the inaugural meeting of the network, held at the University of Constance (Germany) in October 2009, the ENSO now plans its second workshop at the Luiss Guido Carli University in Rome (Italy). All parties interested in joining the network are invited to participate.


Call for papers (extended deadline!)

Social facts influence our decisions and have pervasive effects on our daily lives. At the same time, they seem to be constituted by the beliefs and practices of a community. Understanding the hybrid nature of this type of entities is a prominent task of social ontology. Nowadays different metaphysical approaches aim to describe the ontological profile of social facts and to determine their categorial framework. On the one hand, these approaches often proceed without taking into account the empirical evidence offered by cognitive and social sciences, even if such evidence might help to constrain theoretical debates and to refine the conceptual frameworks. On the other hand, such metaphysical accounts – by critically assessing the implicit assumptions and the ontological commitments of social sciences – are able to inspire new directions of empirical investigation. Can metaphysical inquiries on the nature of social facts inform current empirical practice in the cognitive and social sciences? How might empirical evidence influence the debate between alternative metaphysical pictures?

In order to foster such interdisciplinary dialogue, the principal aim of the workshop is to bring together scholars from different theoretical and empirical disciplines addressing the following topics (the list is not exhaustive):

– Analyses of social practices from different philosophical (e.g. phenomenological or analytic) perspectives as well as from psychological or sociological approaches;

– Metaphysical conceptions of social facts from different theoretical traditions;

– The relations between social beliefs and social facts;

– The relations between social practices and social facts;

– Conventions and institutions;

– Analyses of joint attention, action, belief and intention;

– Types of social facts and social objects.

Abstracts should contain no more than 500 words. Please prepare your submission for blind review by indicating your name and affiliation on a separate sheet and send your proposal to the following address:

Confirmed speakers’ abstracts, announcements, updates and other relevant Information are available at:



Deadline for abstract submission: July 1, 2011.

Notification of acceptance: August 1, 2011.




Confirmed speakers

Cristiano Castelfranchi (Rome, Italy)

Maurizio Ferraris (Turin, Italy)

Francesco Guala (Milan, Italy)

Byron Kaldis (Athens, Greece)

Elisabeth Pacherie (Paris, France)

Hannes Rakoczy (Göttingen, Germany)

Hans Bernhard Schmid (Basel, Switzerland)

Raimo Tuomela (Helsinki, Finland / Munich, Germany)


Organizing Committee

Alessandro Salice (University of Basel, Switzerland)

Luca Tummolini (Istituto di Scienze e Tecnologie della Cognizione – CNR, Italy)


The organization of ENSO II has been partially supported by:

Mind & Language

Istituto Svizzero Roma


Quelle: DGPhil-Verteiler.




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