The value of suffering

Interdisciplinary conference on Suffering’s Valuable Functions

The Value of Suffering Project is pleased to invite registration for an interdisciplinary conference on Suffering’s Valuable Functions.

The workshop will be held on 31 January, 2015 in Philosophy at the University of Glasgow.

What is suffering’s role and value? At this workshop we will consider not only the beneficial roles that suffering might play in motivating injury avoidance but additional, neglected roles. So, for instance, we will be interested in howsuffering bears on attention, memory, deliberation, problem-solving, cooperation, and in suffering’s pedagogical role. We will, furthermore, focus on what we can learn about the role and value of suffering by considering pleasure and positive affective experiences.

Most broadly, the workshop will focus on how attention to the underexplored roles and values of both suffering and pleasure might illuminate our overall understanding of affective experiences.

The day will be organized around the research of the following presenters:

David Bain (Philosophy, University of Glasgow)
Morten Kringlebach (Psychiatry and Medical Sciences, University of Oxford)
Giandomenico Iannetti (Neuroscience, University College London)
Colin Leach (Social Psychology, University of Connecticut)
Michael Serpell (Pain Science and Clinical, University of Glasgow)
Fabrice Teroni (Philosophy, University of Bern)

Discussants at large include Martin Dunbar and Gustavo Ortiz-Millán.

The workshop is funded by the John Templeton Foundation and is part of the larger project: The Value of Suffering: An Interdisciplinary Investigation of the Nature, Meaning, and Role of Affective Experiences.

The Value of Suffering Project is an international, interdisciplinary research project headed by principal investigators David Bain and Michael Brady whose aim is to foster multidisciplinary exploration of the roles that affective experiences—suffering in particular—play in our lives.

For more information, please visit our website:

Registration is £10 for student and £20 for staff, and includes tea and coffee.

To register or for further inquiries please email Jennifer Corns: