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Human Development &
Capability Association

Agency, Well-Being and Justice

Call for Papers: Edited Volume – Philosophy and Child Poverty


Philosophy and Child Poverty
edited by Nicolás Brando, Gunter Graf and Gottfried Schweiger
to be published as part of the Springer Book Series "Philosophy and Poverty"

We are opening a call for contributions to this edited volume. If interested, please submit your abstract (max. 800 words) as soon as possible, the latest deadline 30 September 2017. Decisions will be communicated within two weeks after. The deadline for the final versions of chapters is 30 April 2018. It is envisaged to publish the whole volume as an open access book. For submission of abstracts and further information please send an email to:

The proposed book intends to be the first of its kind to examine child poverty from a philosophical perspective. Although the philosophical literature on both poverty and childhood is certainly increasing, the status of children living in poverty has been largely ignored. We consider that the particular condition of children and the justice-related issues that stem from it compels us to look more deeply into the particular sources, disadvantages and responsibilities of and towards children living in poverty. With this aim in mind, the book intends to fill a significant gap of child-specific philosophical discussions on poverty by bringing together original contributions from an international group of scholars who can shed light on this important topic.

This edited volume aims to offer a broad and diverse reflection of the ways in which child poverty could be conceptualized, measured and the ways in which it is intertwined with childhood as a specific social condition. Furthermore, the responsibilities towards children and the possible mechanisms required for dealing with this condition both as a domestic and a global phenomenon will be analyzed and clarified.
This book aims at exploring the ways in which philosophical reflection may feed into child poverty research. The following topics have been identified crucial for that matter:

I. Conceptualization, Measurement and Evaluation of Child Poverty
An important task at hand is to explore the ways in which philosophical and ethical research may contribute to our understanding of poverty during childhood. Possible issues to deal with could be, but are not restricted to:
• The role that philosophy may play in child poverty research.
• Definitions of child poverty.
• Metrics of justice for assessing poverty during childhood? (capabilities, survival, income, etc.).
• Differences and similarities in ethical reflections on child poverty and poverty in general.
• The dimensions of poverty during childhood: welfare, health, nutrition, education, capabilities, relational resources.

II. The Condition of Children Living in Poverty
The peculiar position of children in our society and their condition as especially vulnerable and dependent beings demands a reflection on how their characteristics makes them relevant subjects of justice, and on how the social institutions that surround them may frame their deprived condition. Possible issues to deal with could be, but are not restricted to:
• The child’s condition and its impact on child poverty: Vulnerability, dependence, agency, resilience.
• Poverty and the family: intra-household inequality, intergenerational transmission of poverty, poverty and social ethos.
• Gender, race, minority status, disability, and other factors as fundamental for understanding childhood poverty.
• Work, State and School: child slavery, forced labour, out-of-school children.
• Child Poverty and Global Issues: Child refugees and migration, the global economy and children.

III. Responsibility and Policy Mechanisms
Many social institutions and agents play a determinant role on a child’s life, and the sources of responsibility towards the alleviation of childhood poverty may rest in many hands. The last part of the book intends to explore the potential ways in which responsibility may be assigned, and possible mechanisms that could deal with poverty during childhood. Possible issues to deal with could be, but are not restricted to:
• What kind of duties do we have towards child poverty?
• How to distribute responsibility over child poverty? The role of the family, the state, global initiatives.
• Structural injustices of child poverty and how to tackle them.
• The international community and global responsibilities: Sustainable Development Goals, the UN, UNICEF, aid.
• How to alleviate child poverty? Education as a source of change, sustainable development, structural mechanisms, bottom-up/top-down initiatives.
• The role and responsibilities of children themselves in dealing with their poverty.

Nicolás Brando –
Gunter Graf -
Gottfried Schweiger -

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