Close this search box.
Karen Jones (UNIVERSITY OF melbourne)
Wise Trust

2023 | 2024


MONDAY, 27 November 2023

18.00 - 19.45



Karen Jones is Associate Professor in philosophy at the University of Melbourne. She has written extensively on trust and trustworthiness: what trust is, when it is justified, how to be trustworthy and whether trustworthiness is a virtue (it isn’t). She takes seriously Annette Baier’s advice never to think too much about trust for too long on pain of becoming paranoid and so she also writes on emotions and rationality and on moral epistemology. Much of her work is a from a feminist perspective.

Abstract: Justified trust is rationally permitted trust; wise trust is excellent trust. Excellent (dis)trust is always justified (dis)trust, but the reverse is not true. You can be justified in distrusting someone and yet it be wise for you to trust. Contrary to folk saying, wisdom does not favour distrust ahead of trust. This paper explores what it takes to be wise in entering, maintaining, modifying, and exiting trust relations. Wisdom cannot be captured in rules or informative high-level generalizations, but must instead be captured in rough general precepts, guidelines, images or stereotypes of the skills and capacities of the wise truster. Wisdom is socially scaffolded including by distributed networks of distrust that make local trust wise.

Meeting Address

Senate House, University of London, Malet St, London WC1E 7HU.

meeting time

The Society’s philosophy talks take place every fortnight on Mondays throughout the academic year. Each talk starts at 18.00 and lasts for approximately an hour. The remainder of the time is dedicated to discussion, which ends at 19.45.


All of the Society’s philosophy talks are catered with fairtrade teas, coffees, and biscuits.


In line with the Society’s mission to make philosophy readily available to the general public, all talks are free and membership is not required.

Draft Papers

Following over a century of tradition, draft papers for all the talks are available in advance. Please note that draft papers can only be cited with the authors permission (see below for final publication and subscription details). The draft paper for a talk is available approximately one week prior to its schedule delivery.

Final Papers

For the past 142 years, the Proceedings has featured widely respected papers delivered by a range of prominent philosophers, such as Alfred North Whitehead, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Bertrand Russell, A.J. Ayer, P.F. Strawson, Karl Popper, Elizabeth Anscombe, Bernard Williams, Hubert Dreyfus, Alexander Nehamas, and Onora O’Neill. Final drafts of the papers – including discussion notes and exemplary graduate papers – are published in the Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society.


The venue at Senate House is wheelchair accessible and there are disabled toilet facilities on the ground floor. If you require a disabled parking space, or a hearing loop, please contact in advance, so that we can reserve these for you. Service animals are also welcome.