Each fall and spring semester, USI faculty members from the College of Liberal Arts present individual, free public lectures featuring their current research. See our current lineup of speakers for this semester below.
NEW for Fall 2020
Due to the COVID-19 restrictions on public gatherings, the College of Liberal Arts will be hosting our colloquia series virtually through Zoom. These presentations will be live-streamed to the USI College of Liberal Arts YouTube and recorded.
The Perils of Plastics: A Primer for Business Ethics
Dr. Mary Lyn Stoll
Associate Professor of Philosophy
November 6 at 3 p.m. CST
Thirty-two nations have instituted bans on single use plastic bags, yet, at current rates, the world’s oceans may well have more plastic than fish in them by 2050. Additionally, plastic pollution rates have increased even more in the midst of the pandemic. Present levels of plastics dumping into global ecosystems are clearly unsustainable.
To make matters worse, the global plastics industry is growing at a rapid pace, and so too the pollution that it generates. Half of all plastics ever produced were created in the past 15 years, and production is expected to grow as the oil industry shifts from providing for automobiles to focusing more on plastic. All too often, single use plastic is used in rich nations and then dumped as refuse in poor ones.
Stoll will examine how companies can take more proactive and systematic steps towards minimizing their role in the creation of plastic pollution. By taking comprehensive measures to address plastic as an environmental harm negatively impacting a wide range of stakeholders who could not in principle consent to the harms accrued, companies can begin to remedy and reform morally unjustified practices. As with any attempt to become more morally accountable in business practice, special care must be taken to avoid greenwash as well as measures that may be morally better in one way, but substantially morally worse in another.
Later This Semester
Students' Ability to Evaluate Arguments: What, How, & Why?
Dr. Sri Dandotkar