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Jubilee Centre for Character and Values hosts Pioneering Interdisciplinary Seminar on Gratitude 23rd November 2013 Events In relation to its own ongoing research and development work on the topic the Jubilee Centre for Character and Values hosted a major international seminar under the title of 'Gratitude in Public Life' which ran from Friday 22nd to Saturday 23rd of November. The pioneering aim of the seminar was to stimulate well overdue interface and dialogue between contemporary philosophical, social scientific (psychological), theological and other work in this important field. To this end, the seminar featured presentations by Giacomo Bono (US), Claudia Card (US), Nacy Fagley (US), Nathaniel Lambert (US), Terrance McConnell (US), Saul Smilansky (Israel), Philip Watkins (US) and Alex Wood (UK), as well as the Centre’s own Liz Gulliford and Blaire Morgan. Non-presenting participants included Sean McAleer (US), Kristján Kristjánsson, Kenneth Wilson, James Arthur, David Carr and Tom Harrison. Tom also chaired a session of shorter presentations on more practical Centre research and development work in community and schools by Jenny Higgins, Al Barrett and Lee Rogerson, and by Kenneth Wilson on his theological investigations with different faith communities. Apart from the event being a noteworthy social success, in which all participants seem to have got along famously (as one may see from all the smiling faces in the photograph), the general consensus seems to have been that the cross-disciplinary conversation generated by the seminar was both timely and important for the common cause of coherent and effective practical promotion of gratitude in public life. At all events, it was clear that philosophers learned much from psychologists, and vice versa, and all seemed to agree on the urgent need for the conversations generated in the course of the seminar to be taken much further. As a next step in this direction, Prof. David Carr is to explore the possibility of publishing an edited interdisciplinary collection of essays on gratitude drawn from conference papers and other sources.
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