Fair and Unfair Strategies in Public Controversies: The Case of Induced Earthquakes



Contemporary theory of argumentation offers many insights about fallacies and the ways to react to them. But what if, in a public controversy, it is not a matter of occasional derailments but one party is systematically trivializing the other party’s problems or resorting to pressure in the form of threats or blackmail? Can this be countered by the tools of reason? To gain some grasp of this issue, we describe a number of strategies used in the public controversy about induced earthquakes in Groningen. We check whether these strategies are fair, i.e. balanced, transparent, and tolerant. We also investigate the effects of the choice for a particular kind of strategy. It appears that, in circumstances, choosing a fair strategy may be detrimental for resolving the controversy and choosing an unfair one beneficial. Following up ideas from social psychology and political science, we formulate some guidelines for the choice of strategies. At the end we stress the importance – especially for those who carry little weight – of having a society in which the knowledge and skills needed for assessing the fairness of strategies is widespread.
Originele taal-2English
TitelArgumentation and Reasoned Action
SubtitelProceedings of the 1st European Conference on Argumentation, Lisbon 2015
RedacteurenDima Mohammed, Marcin Lewinski
Plaats van productieLondon
UitgeverijCollege Publications
Aantal pagina's20
ISBN van geprinte versie978-1-84890-211-4
StatusPublished - 2016
Evenement1st European Conference on Argumentation: Argumentation and Reasoned Action - Arglab, Instituto de Filosofia da Nova (IFILNOVA), Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, LIsbon, Portugal
Duur: 9-jun-201512-jun-2015

Publicatie series

NaamStudies in Logic
UitgeverijCollege Publications


Conference1st European Conference on Argumentation

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