What We Ought to Do: The Decisions and Duties of Non-agential Groups


  • Olle Blomberg University of Gothenburg


collective moral obligation, group identification, non-agential groups, Stephanie Collins, team reasoning


In ordinary discourse, a single duty is often attributed to a plurality of agents. In Group Duties: Their Existence and Their Implications for Individuals, Stephanie Collins claims that such attributions involve a “category error”. I critically discuss Collins’ argument for this claim and argue that there is a substantive sense in which non-agential groups can have moral duties. A plurality of agents can have a single duty to bring about an outcome by virtue of a capacity of each to practically reason about what they ought to do together. I also argue that Collins’ attempt to give a reductive account of such “we-reasoning” fails.


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