(updated: August 11th, 2004)

REGISTRATION FORM ** Registration deadline: June 25th **

NEW: Program

NEW: Maps of Jyväskylä and the university campus area

NEW: Abstracts of Workshops papers (a word document)

NEW: Abstracts of Workshops papers (a pdf-file)


The Concept of Person -research project at the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, organizes an international conference “Dimensions of Personhood” on 13-15 August, 2004.


The invited speakers include:

Lynne Rudder Baker (University of Massachusetts), author of “Persons and Bodies: A Constitution View”, “Explaining Attitudes: A Practical Approach to the Mind”

Eric Olson (University of Sheffield), author of “The Human Animal: Personal Identity without Psychology”

Michael Quante (University of Essen), author of “Hegel's Concept of Action” and “Personales Leben und menschlicher Tod”,

Dieter Sturma (University of Essen), author of “Philosophie der Person. Die Selbstverhältnisse von Subjektivität und Moralität”, editor (with Karl Ameriks) of “The Modern Subject: Conceptions of the Self in Classical German Philosophy”,

Dan Zahavi (University of Copenhagen), author of “Self-Awareness and Alterity: A Phenomenological Investigation”, “Husserl and transcendental intersubjectivity”.

In addition, there are 36 contributed workshop papers.



Recent developments in neurosciences and information technology, in medicine and biotechnology, and in society and culture more broadly have made urgent various questions concerning our identity as human beings. As our power over ourselves increases, the questions of who we are, how we are to conceive of ourselves and how we should use our powers over ourselves, become more and more pressing. The concept of a person is in many ways a necessary starting point in answering such questions. However, the concept is often used in an indeterminate sense, and when efforts have been made to clarify the concept, different philosophers have ended up with rival usages and rival theories. For example, the theories differ on whether 'person' is identical with 'human being', 'subject' or 'self'. Yet it seems to us that rival theories of personhood are trying to capture a common idea, namely that a person differs from (other) animals, machines, detached 'minds', brains and subpersonal mechanisms in the kind of relations to self, to others and to world it has, or is capable of having.

The general idea of the conference is to approach personhood along three dimensions, where the being of persons differs from the being of non-persons:

1. self-relations,

2. interpersonal relations, and

3. world-relations.

The guiding question of the conference is: how does the concept of a person illuminate these relations (to self, to others, to the world), and how do these relations illuminate the concept of a person? Our wish is to bring together recent work done in each of these dimensions and further our understanding concerning the ways in which personhood and these relations are intertwined.

In the three dimensions mentioned, it is possible to ask questions such as:

- How is the given relation (to self, to others, to the world), or some specific modification of it, constitutive of personhood?

- How does the given relation in the case of persons differ from the possibly analogous relations that other animals, or perhaps sub-personal mechanisms, might have?

- What are the possible sub-personal mechanisms or processes that have to take place in order for there to be a given relation in the ‘personal’ mode?

- What exactly might the ‘personal-sub-personal’-distinction mean in the case of a given relation?

- What kind of internal connections does this triangle of relations (to self, to others, to the world) have?



The conference fee will be 20 EUR. The fee includes participation, tea and coffee. The optional conference dinner, taking place at a boat-cruise, is likely to cost around 40 EUR extra. The contributed papers appear in the conference proceedings, which is for sale during the conference, is likely to cost 15-25 EUR.

Registration form and more information will later be made available at this website.


The conference will take place at the campus of University of Jyväskylä, at the center of the city of Jyväskylä.



The conference is organized by the "The Concept of Person" research project run by the Department of Social Sciences and Philosophy, University of Jyväskylä, and financed by the Academy of Finland. More information about our project can be found at http://www.jyu.fi/yhtfil/fil/person. The members of the organizing committee are Jussi Kotkavirta, Heikki Ikäheimo, Arto Laitinen and Petteri Niemi.



We cannot organize travel or hotel bookings, though we are pleased to assist you if you encounter any problems.

There are several hotels and hostels as well as bed & breakfasts available. Most of the hotels are situated within walking distance of the city centre. All room reservations can be made through e-mail or by phone/fax.


The following three hotels give a discount for the participants of the conference “Dimensions of Personhood”:

Alexandra Sokos Hotel

Hannikaisenkatu 35, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-20 1234 642, sales office

+358-20 1234 640, fax +358-14 651 200

email: sales@jyvaskyla.sok.fi

www: http://www.sokoshotels.fi/english/

Cumulus Jyväskylä

Väinönkatu 3, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-14 653 211, fax +358-14 653 299

email: jyvaskyla.cumulus@restel.fi

www: http://www.cumulus.fi/hotelli.cfm?id=cumujkl

Jyväshovi Sokos Hotel

Kauppakatu 35, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-20 1234 641, fax +358-14 413 3290

email: sales@jyvaskyla.sok.fi

www: http://www.sokoshotels.fi/english/


Other hotels include:

Alba Finlandia Hotel

http://www.hotellialba.fi Ahlmaninkatu 4, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-14 636 311, fax +358-14 636 300

email: info@hotellialba.fi


http://www.hotelliyopuu.fi/index2.htm Yliopistonkatu 23, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-14 333 900, fax +358-14 620 588. email: myyntipalvelu@hotelliyopuu.fi


http://www.hotellimilton.com/ Hannikaisenkatu 29, Jyväskylä, tel. +358-14 337 7900, fax +358-14 631 927

email: hotelli.milton@kolumbus.fi

Complete list of accommodation possibilities:




Finland is easily accessible from all over the world. Several international airlines have regular flights to Helsinki, the capital city. There are several flights from the Helsinki-Vantaa Airport to Jyväskylä daily (flight time 35 min). See Finnair, SAS or your airline for details.

Jyväskylä airport is located about 20 km from the town centre. There is a bus connection between the airport and the city center that runs according to Finnair timetables. The bus journey takes 25 minutes and costs about 5€.

Taxi from the airport to Jyväskylä takes 25 minutes and costs about 30€. The Airport Taxi (shared minibus) is about 13,50€/person and should be booked in advance (+358 14) 106 400.

Flight schedules:





The cheapest way to continue your journey from Helsinki to Jyväskylä is by train. The Finnair Airport Bus arrives to and departs from the Helsinki train station. Trains to and from Jyväskylä depart and arrive almost every hour.

Train timetables and prices

If you are traveling from Scandinavia, it may be more convenient to fly or take the ferry to Turku and take a train from there.



Viking Line

Silja Line


Heikki Ikäheimo



The Homepage of the Concept of Person -Project