The annual Philosophy mini-conference for years 12 and 13 will be held on Wednesday 15 November 2017.

Philosophy Mini-Conference 2017

We would like to invite you and your students to our annual Philosophy Mini-Conference. The conference is aimed at Year 12 and 13 students with an interest in philosophical issues.

Our Philosophy Mini-Conference gives students a flavour of what studying Philosophy at university is like. The interactive sessions will give some idea of the ground-breaking research that philosophers at the University of Hertfordshire are engaged in, and will give students insight into some of the major problems of contemporary philosophy.

Event overview

The event includes a series of short talks, led by the Philosophy department at the University of Hertfordshire. After each talk, there will be an opportunity for participants to ask questions, make objections and find fault with the ideas they have just heard—exactly like a professional academic conference.  There will also be a session led by current Philosophy students, who will offer their experiences and advice on studying this subject at university.

One of our featured sessions will be on utilitarianism and theodicies. Utilitarianism is a theory of ethics that is often associated with atheism, while a theodicy is an attempt to explain why God permits good people to suffer. These two ideas seem to be opposed but they have something in common: they both seem to involve systematic injustice. This talk will explain and explore the critical link between utilitarianism and theodicy.

Programme for the day

  • 10:45-11:00 Welcome
  • 11:00-11:40 Dr Kate Kirkpatrick: Existentialism
  • 11:40-11:50 Break
  • 11:50-12:30 Dr Craig Caddick Bourne: Personification and Impossibility
  • 12:30-13:30 Lunch
  • 13:30-13:50 How to Succeed at University (hear from our current philosophy students)
  • 13:50-14:30 Dr Brendan Larvor: Utilitarianism and Theodicies


N001, de Havilland Campus, Hatfield, Hertfordshire  AL10 9EU