I am currently working on the following projects
§1. On Cosmopolitanism: Equality, Ecology and Emancipation
This defends an egalitarian account of global justice. The book has three parts. In Part I, I seek to defend an egalitarian set of principles of global distributive justice. In doing so I argue against the tendency to carve up issues of global justice into separate issues (such as territory, natural resources, migration, trade, health, climate, and so on) and argue that this is flawed for both principled and practical reasons. We need, I argue, a more systemic approach which considers these together - a general overarching theory. I then argue that such a theory should be guided by egalitarian principles of justice, and, moreover, that these principles apply at the global level, irrespective of whether there are pre-existing social, economic or political relationships. I then proceed to explore the implications of this egalitarian approach for trade, resource ownership and migration.
Having defended an egalitarian conception of cosmopolitan justice, I turn, in Part II, to explore the ecological preconditions of global justice. Realizing cosmopolitan principles of justice has profound implications for the protection of the environment. Securing persons' rights has both environmental effects but also environmental preconditions, and it is important to ensure that persons' effects on the natural world do not undermine the environmental preconditions needed to secure people's rights. In short: humanity must live within its means. Since the environmental impacts of our actions often fall on future generations, ascertaining these ecological limits requires an account of what obligations members of one generation owe to future generations. In response to this I defend a pluralistic egalitarian account of intergenerational justice. Part II concludes by examining the implications that the cosmopolitan principles of economic and environmental justice I defend have for the ascription of responsibilities and for institutional design.
Parts I and II, thus, specify what principles of justice should apply at the global level. However, one stark feature of our world is that persons and institutions signally fail to comply with principles of global justice. What should be done in response? I address this in Part III. In particular, I explore what rights those who bear the brunt of global injustice have to secure their just entitlements and thereby to help bring about a fairer world. To do so I argue that there is a right to resist global injustice. This can take two forms: (i) a right to engage in acts to secure one's immediate rights, and (ii) a right to act in ways which bring about long-term structural change. My aim in Part III is to delineate the content of these rights, explain why they are justified and necessary, and to identify the ethical parameters that should guide any struggle to realise a fairer world. This involves addressing when the right to resist global injustice is triggered; who has the right; what means they may use, and, under what circumstances; who should bear the brunt of acts of resistance; when illegal action is justified; and, what criteria resisters must satisfy for their actions to enjoy political legitimacy.
§2. Democracy and the Problem of Harmful Short-Termism
This argues that existing political institutions (and the political systems that would exist if many models of democratic theory were put in place) result in what I term 'Harmful Short-Termism'. I argue that this political myopia is ubiquitous. We see it in failures to address climate change and environmental degradation, macro-economic policy, the welfare state, pensions, education, health, technology, disaster prevention, infrastructure, foreign policy, planning policy, and housing. I provide an account of why this political short-termism is so prevalent (rooted in what I term the four Images of Intertemporal Politics). I evaluate a number of proposals that have been made to address this, and defend a package of policies centred around mitigating the forces that encourage these harmful forms of short-termism.
Methodologically: this work seeks to combine normative political philosophy with the rich literatures in political science, the history of political thought, public policy, international relations, economics, environmental sciences, psychology, sociology, history, anthropology, and literature on the nature, implications and causes of harmful short-termism.
§3. Power, Political Responsibilities and Climate Change
Climate change is a political problem - with political causes and requiring political action. This paper explores who has what political responsibilities to tackle climate change. There is an abstract and handout here.
§4. Global Justice: Tackling Three Exclusionary Tendencies – Agenda Formation, Voices, and Agency'. This paper explores how to theorize about global injustice. I argue that an adequate theory of global justice needs to overcome three common “exclusionary” features of Anglo-American theories of global justice - what I term the “exclusionary agenda”, the “exclusion of voices” and the “exclusion of agency”.