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AISB event Bulletin Item

CALL FOR PAPERS: Topoi conference "Intentions: Philosophical and empirical issues", 29-30 Nov 2012, Rome, ITALY

Submissions of unpublished papers are welcome on any topic relevant to the conference theme (see 
below). Submitted articles should be in English, not exceed 5.000 words in length (including 
references), and be prepared for blind reviewing. Only original papers (i.e., not published or 
submitted for publication elsewhere) will be considered, since the authors of accepted 
contributions will be invited to submit a revised longer version of their papers for a special 
issue of Topoi, edited by Markus Schlosser
(Leiden) and Fabio Paglieri (Rome).

Submission of papers by e-mail to: Fabio Paglieri (
Accepted file formats: .doc, .rtf., .odp, .pdf 
Deadline for submission (full papers): 31 August 2012

Theorizing about human action has a long history in philosophy, and the nature of intention and 
intentional action has received a lot of attention in recent analytic philosophy. At the same time,
intentional action has become an empirically studied phenomenon in psychology, cognitive 
neuroscience, artificial intelligence, and robotics. Many results obtained in these areas have 
been incorporated within the current philosophical debate, while at the same time scientists 
have often adopted in their experiments and models philosophical assumptions on the nature of 
intention and intentional action. As a result, the study of intentions is nowadays a thriving 
enterprise, where both conceptual and empirical issues are discussed in a dialogue across 
disciplines. This conference aims to bring together empirically informed philosophers and 
philosophically savvy scientists to address a variety of central problems in the study of 
intention. Possible topics for contributions include:

What is the relevance of recent findings in neuroscience and experimental psychology for our 
philosophical understanding of intentions and intentional action?
What role can philosophical analysis play in the design of experiments and in the interpretation 
of empirical results?
What is the relation between intentions, choices, and other mental states and events (such as 
desires, goals, plans, beliefs, expectations, emotions, etc.)?
Are intentions necessarily conscious? Are they causally efficacious in virtue of being conscious?
What, exactly, are motor intentions, proximal intentions, and distal intentions?
What are the neural correlates of the different kinds of intentions?
What are the mechanisms responsible for intention recognition and action understanding?
What is the role of intentions in gaining self-knowledge and self-understanding?
What is the nature of group or shared intentions?
What role do intentions play in self-control and weakness of the will?
Do (or can) other animals or robots have intentions?
And so on.

The conference will be held at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies of the National
Research Council of Italy (ISTC-CNR,, Via San Martino della Battaglia 44, 
Rome, Italy.
The language of the conference is English. Attendance is free and no registration is required. All 
meals will be provided for the authors of accepted papers, but at the moment no reimbursement for 
accommodation and travel costs is expected to be available.

The conference is organized by Fabio Paglieri (Rome) and Markus Schlosser (Leiden), and sponsored 
by Topoi, Springer, the European Network for Social Intelligence, SINTELNET 
(, and the Goal-Oriented Agents Lab 
(GOAL, of the ISTC-CNR.

For further information, please contact Fabio Paglieri,