UCL Faculty of Laws


A moral law for war

31 January 2017, 4:00 pm–6:00 pm

Armed Conflict

Event Information

Open to



Institute of Law, Politics and Philosophy


Council Room, UCL School of Public Policy, 29-30 Tavistock Square, London WC1H 9QU

Speaker: Professor Victor Tadros (University of Warwick)
Series: Institute of Law, Politics and Philosophy

Note that the total time will be devoted to discussion of the paper. To receive the paper and to be added to the email list for the UCL Institute of Law, Politics & Philosophy please email jeffrey.howard@ucl.ac.uk

About the paper

A substantial body of recent work in just war theory claims that the moral considerations that determine whether acts of individual combatants during a war are permissible or wrong are not reflected in the laws of armed conflict. Whereas morality prohibits the killing of combatants on the just side of a war, the law does not. And whereas morality sometimes permits the killing of non-combatants on the unjust side, again the law does not. Many also defend these divergences between law and morality. Professor Tadros will offer a cautious case for revising the law to achieve greater convergence between morality and the laws of war.

About the speaker

Victor Tadros is Professor of Law at the University of Warwick. His research interests are in criminal law, especially the philosophy of criminal law, terrorism law, the philosophy of criminal trials and the philosophy of punishment, at the domestic level, but also internationally. He also works on just war theory, and a range of fundamental issues in moral and political philosophy. His books include Criminal Responsibility (OUP, 2005), The Trial on Trial vol.3 (with Antony Duff, Lindsay Farmer and Sandra Marshall) (Hart, 2007) and The Ends of Harm: The Moral Foundations of Criminal Law (Oxford, 2011). He is currently working on a book entitled Wrongs and Crimes, (for OUP), which is concerned with the relationship between moral wrongdoing and criminal law.

About the Institute

The Institute brings together political and legal theorists from LawPolitical Science and Philosophy and organises regular colloquia in terms 2 and 3.