Dr T.H. Tempels (Tjidde)
Assistant professor - Empirical Political Science
Tjidde Tempels is Assistant Professor of Political Theory at the Department of Political Science. He is interested in theories of (deliberative) democracy, applied ethics, business ethics and political corporate responsibility in particular. Under what circumstances is political involvement of firms in our democracies morally desirable? Can it be democratically legitimate? And how do corporate political activities affect the functioning and quality of our democracy?
In his dissertation (Wageningen, 2019) he explored the possibility of a corporate responsibility for public health in the context of the food and beverage industry. He published on our understanding of political responsibility in global governance in The Journal of Global Ethics, and addressed the responsibility of corporations for structural health inequalities in Business Ethics Quarterly.
In his research Tjidde seeks to investigate the political role firms ought to play in democratic and less democratic systems. Large corporations and multinationals are increasingly involved the governing of our global society. Corporate political activity is not limited to classic lobbying for mere economic interests, but also involves – supposedly – political action for the common good. Over the past years Pfizer has stopped supplying medication that is used for the death penalty in the United States, and after the 2020 elections Twitter banned former US president Trump from its platform. How should we assess these kinds of political activities? Are they examples of good corporate citizenship? Or is this undue involvement in political deliberation and decision making? It are these kinds of questions, at the intersection of political theory and business ethics, that he aims to find answers to.
- Theories of Democracy, Business Ethics, Political Corporate Social Responsibility, Applied Ethics
- Tempels, T., Blok, V., & Verweij, M. (2020) Injustice in Food-Related Public Health Problems: A Matter of Corporate Responsibility. Business Ethics Quarterly, 1-26. Full text
- Tempels, T., Blok, V., & Verweij, M. (2020). Food Vendor Beware! On Ordinary Morality and Unhealthy Marketing. Food Ethics, 5(1-2). Full text
- Tempels, T., Blok, V., & Verweij, M. (2017). Understanding political responsibility in corporate citizenship: towards a shared responsibility for the common good. Journal of Global Ethics, 13(1), 90-108. Full text
- Tempels, T., Verweij, M., & Blok, V. (2017). Big Food’s ambivalence: seeking profit and responsibility for health. American journal of public health, 107(3), 402-406. Full text
- Blok, V., Tempels, T., Pietersma, E., & Jansen, L. (2017). Exploring ethical decision making in responsible innovation: The case of innovations for healthy food. In Responsible Innovation 3 (pp. 209-230). Springer, Cham. Full text
H index: 6
Research grants and prizes
- 2014 - Personal PhD Research Grant from the Wageningen School of Social Sciences for the project: ‘Food and Virtues: Corporate Social Responsibility in the Food Industry‘
- 2013 - Education Development Grant from the Julius Centre at UMC Utrecht for the development of an online (post)graduate course on Research Ethics
- 2014 - 2019 Food and Virtues: Corporate Social Responsibility in the Food Industry. In my personal PhD project I investigate the possibility of a corporate responsibility for public health in the context of the food and beverage industry. The role industry in the rise of non-communicable diseases (obesity, diabetes type II) is a topic of controversy, as the behavior of 'Big Food' and 'Big Soda' reflects a split corporate personality as several companies contribute to public health problems and simultaneously engage in activities to prevent them. Inspired by the works of political philosophers such Iris Marion Young and David Miller and the debate in business ethics on political corporate responsibility I reflected on what can be reasonably expected from these companies in remedying public health problems. More information
- 30 August 2019 - Interview on NPO Radio 1 at "Dit is de Dag" about the role of the food industry in the fight against the global obesity pandemic (alas in Dutch only) More information
Member of the Board of War Requiem - Bridge to the Future Foundation
(01 January 2021)
War Requiem Foundation - Bridge to the Future