Jagiellonian Centre for Law, Language and Philosophy, together with the Institute of Philosophy and Chair of the Theory of Law announce a lecture by Professor Miguel Garcia-Godinez (University College Cork) “Proxy Agency in Institutional Action Contexts”
Lecture will be held on Thursday, 24 Nov 2022, 17:45 in room 28 and MS-Teams:
Proxy agency is the capacity of individuals and groups to act for other individuals or groups in specific social transactions. For example, a legal team acts as a proxy for a client in a courtroom, the Prime Minister acts as a proxy for the UK Government when attending international meetings, and a spokesperson acts as a proxy for a company when delivering an official message, etc. Although a very common social phenomenon, it has not yet received enough philosophical treatment. Currently, the most developed account of this social capacity is Ludwig’s proxy agency in collective action. Yet, his account relies on a deflationary, we-content approach to collective intentionality (á la Bratman). In this chapter, I argue that this approach is too weak to explain proxy agency in institutional action contexts – where the individuals and groups formally authorised to perform rule-guided group activities for the principal hold a strong, non-conditional we-commitment. In order to elucidate this feature, I provide an account of proxy agency based on a more robust, we-mode approach to collective intentionality (á la Tuomela). I suggest with this that, for proxy agency to operate as expected in institutional contexts, there must be appropriate conditions of sociality in place – which ultimately coheres with the larger project developed by Tuomela on social ontology.