Actions and Detail Panel
Business Ethics Speaker Series: Julia Nefsky
Wed, 22 March 2017, 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM EDT
"One Burger Won't Make a Difference: Consumer Choice in a Collective Impact World."
Taken collectively, consumer food choices have a major impact on animal lives, human lives, and the environment. But it is far from clear how to move from facts about the power of collective consumer demand to conclusions about what one ought to do as an individual consumer. In particular, even if a large-scale shift in demand away from a certain product (e.g. factory-farmed meat) would prevent grave harms or injustices, it typically does not seem that it will make a difference whether or not one refrains from purchasing that product oneself. Most present-day food companies operate at too large a scale for a single purchase to make a difference to production decisions. If that is true, then it’s not clear what point there is in refraining. This is “the problem of collective impact”. In this talk, I will explore a range of proposals for how to solve this problem.
Julia Nefsky is an Assistant Professor in Philosophy at the University of Toronto. Prior to coming to University of Toronto, she obtained her PhD from the University of California Berkeley.