Ethical Theory and Moral Practice

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 761–774

Accounting for the Data: Intuitions in Moral Theory Selection



Reflective equilibrium is often credited with extending the idea of accounting for the data from its familiar home in the sciences to the realm of moral philosophy. But careful consideration of the main concepts of this idea—the data to be accounted for and the kind of accounting it is appropriate to expect of a moral theory—leads to a revised understanding of the “accounting for the data” perspective as it applies to the discipline of moral theory selection. This revised understanding is in tension with reflective equilibrium and actually provides more support for the alternative method of moral theory selection that has been termed ‘practical equilibrium’.


Reflective equilibrium Practical equilibrium Intuitions Data 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of KansasLawrenceUSA

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