Much of what we believe we believe on the testimony of others.  One reason why we look to experts is because they have knowledge of subject beyond that of ourselves, and we follow their guidance trusting that expertise.  Organizations have also used specialists either by employing relevant experts, or increasingly, by having committees of experts that provide advice. These days governments and indeed large private sector organizations are increasingly looking for guidance on ethical issues.  However, are ethical issues like other issues where we are justified in trusting the guidance of experts? Taking moral responsibility surely means grasping the moral reasons justifying one’s actions for oneself.  What then is the role of moral expert? Indeed, is there such thing as a moral expert? 


Keith Dowding is Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Political Philosophy at the Australian National University. He has published widely across the fields of comparative politics, public administration and policy and in political theory. He edited Journal of Theoretical Politics for 15 years. His latest books are Its the Government's Fault, Stupid (2020), Economic Perspectives on Government (with Brad Taylor) (2019), Rational Choice and Political Power (2019) and Power, Luck and Freedom (2017). With Patrick Dumont, Dowding edits the Routledge series on Social and Political Elites.


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