The foundation of morals and ethics

We all recognize that there are some things that we should or should not think, feel, desire, be and, of course, do. The normative discourse plays a central role in our lives. This sort of judgement is often based on morals or ethics. Indeed, we believe that we have certain moral obligations, such as keeping a promise. Studying this type of norm is the business of moral philosophy.

The Groupe de recherche interuniversitaire sur la normativité (Interuniversity Normativity Research Group), directed by Christine Tappolet from Université de Montréal, is the most important working group of philosophers in Quebec. Its mandate is to study normativity as it appears in four major branches of philosophy: ethics, action theory, philosophy of mind and epistemology. The researchers postulate that the different forms of normativity arise from the same nature. It therefore appears essential to analyze the concept of normativity by means of of these different fields of investigation. 

Every semester, the research group organizes a series of workshops at which its members or invited speakers present their most recent work. Every year, the group's members come together for a plenary workshop dealing with more specific questions. The theme of the workshop held in May 2010 was Normativity and Human Nature. Sixteen papers were presented, several of which will be published in a special volume of Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review and in a special dossier of Ateliers de l'éthique, published by the Centre de recherche de l'Université de Montréal.


Groupe de recherche interuniversitaire sur la normativité


Christine Tappolet, Université de Montréal

Regular members

  • Renée Bilodeau, Université Laval
  • Michael Blome-Tillmann, Université McGill
  • Yves Bouchard, Université de Sherbrooke
  • Josée Brunet, Institut de technologie agroalimentaire, Campus de Saint-Hyacinthe
  • Luc Faucher, Université du Québec à Montréal
  • Ian Gold, Université McGill
  • Iwao Hirose, Université McGill
  • Daniel Laurier, Université de Montréal
  • Andrew Reisner, Université McGill
  • Mauro Rossi, Université du Québec à Montréal
  • Sarah Stroud, Université McGill
  • Patrick Turmel, Université Laval
  • Alain Voizard, Université McGill