Institutions and Collective Intentionality

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic

2 Citations (Scopus)
80 Downloads (Pure)


This chapter considers that institutional actions necessarily depend on collective attitudes. It focuses on the normative dimension of institutions and evaluates the claim that institutional normativity can only be adequately explicated in terms of collective attitudes. The chapter addresses the idea that institutions are social constructions, and assesses the claim that social construction is to be understood in terms of collective attitudes. It introduces the thesis that institutions solve problems of interaction—more specifically, coordination problems and collective action problems—and considers the claim that collective attitudes are required for successfully doing so. Theories of collective intentionality are first and foremost theories of doing something together. Michael Bratman's goal in developing a theory of collective intentionality is to identify a set of attitudes that can play the same functional role at the social level as individual intentions play at the individual level. Practices can be governed by social norms without those norms as such providing people with reasons.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Collective Intentionality
EditorsMarija Jancovic, Kirk Ludwig
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781315768571
ISBN (Print)9781138783638
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameRoutledge Handbooks in Philosophy

Cite this