Call for contributions: Special Issue "From the Acquisition of Knowledge to the Promotion of Wisdom"

 “The world is currently beset with global problems that threaten our future: the climate crisis; destruction of the natural world, loss of wild life, mass extinctions; pollution of earth, sea and air; lethal modern war; the menace of nuclear weapons; deranged politics assisted by the internet; and the pandemic (spread by modern travel). Some hold that all these global problems have been made possible by the extraordinarily successful pursuit of modern science and technology dissociated from a more fundamental concern to help humanity resolve conflicts and problems of living in more cooperatively rational ways, so that we may begin to make progress towards a better, wiser world. Are universities today, devoted as they are to the acquisition of knowledge, doing all that they might to help humanity solve our grave global problems? Or, do universities need to change, perhaps quite radically? If so, what changes need to be made, and how would these changes help? Do universities need to give intellectual priority to the task of helping humanity both discover, and do, what needs to be done to solve our urgent problems of living so that we may make progress to a wiser world? If so, what implications would this have for the social sciences and the humanities? What implications would it have for the way in which the university is related to the rest of the social world? What are the implications for education? How might natural science be affected?  Is the basic intellectual aim of science to acquire knowledge of truth? Or, are there problematic assumptions concerning metaphysics, values, and politics inherent in the aims of science, which need scrutiny and improvement as science proceeds? Is academic inquiry, as at present constituted, genuinely rational in seeking to help promote human welfare? Could the basic aim of academic inquiry be to promote wisdom?

“It is hoped that contributions to this Special Issue of Philosophies will explore questions such as these about how universities ought to be helping humanity solve global problems, and thus make progress towards a good, civilized, wise world.”

The deadline for submissions is 15 May 2021.  “Philosophies has no restrictions on the length of manuscripts, provided that the text is concise and comprehensive.”  For more information see:


Philosophies is an open access journal.  It charges authors, or their institutions, for publication.  I have been assured, however, that all those invited to contribute by me will not have to pay for their contribution.  I hereby invite you to contribute a paper to this special issue.  It might be a good idea to get in touch with me, before you submit your paper.