Our Projects

Our Projects

We are committed to supporting initiatives

ICPIC is committed to supporting initiatives that focus on facilitating philosophical inquiry with young people. Our major projects include our biennial conference, our academic journal and our essay award competition. Going forward, we will focus on creating an ever evolving online platform to support P4wC initiatives and disseminate the extensive P4wC knowledge that has accumulated over the years. We are also working towards bringing P4wC to more underprivileged children and teens.



Since its formation in 1985, ICPIC has held biennial international conferences that bring together advocates of philosophical inquiry with children from around the world. Over the years, we have endeavored to shift the conference location to different parts of the globe to encourage the greatest possible impact at the local and regional levels. Each conference is hosted by a different ICPIC member center in collaboration with the executive committee.




Philosophy in and beyond the classroom:
P4C across cultural, social and political differences

The 20th Biennial International ICPIC Conference

Tokyo, Japan | Rikkyo University


Over the past four decades, Philosophy for/with Children (P4C, PwC: P4wC) has been practiced over 60 countries and regions and its number has been increasing dramatically. While large and growing literatures about P4wC tend to focus on children’s ethical and philosophical thinking in the classroom, in recent years we have been witnessing various forms of P4CwC practiced not only as a pedagogical tool but also social, cultural, religious, discursive and political practices in the classrooms, hospitals, orphan asylums, streets and/or museums. The current COVID19 situation also inevitably requires us to shift our understanding of “where P4wC occurs,” away from the confines of the classroom, toward the broader public sphere, including the digital space. As such, the various use of P4wC necessitates reconsideration of the role of philosophical dialogue in a complex and chaotic world, not just as a pedagogical practice but also as a complex practice encompassing educational, social, cultural, and political functions.

The ICPIC 2022 Tokyo (Japan) to be held in 8-10 August 2022 (pre-conference 5-6 August, Post Conference on August 11) will create an opportunity where all participants find new opportunities and challenges of philosophical inquiry with children from multiple angles. To this end, in organising the ICPIC Conference in 2022 in Japan, we strongly encourage philosophers, practitioners and teachers from, for example, Western, Asian, South-American, Middle-Eastern, African, Oceanian countries (and beyond) to participate in the conference and present their own practices so that we can open new avenues for thinking what P4wC is and ought to be. Plus, in the face of the global-scale challenges emerged as a result of the COVID19 pandemic, we also consider the future of philosophical dialogue by orchestrating knowledge and insights gained from various contexts.

For more information, click here

Past Conferences

The 19th ICPIC conference entitled “Philosophy for/with Children and the Citizen Agent” took place in Bogotá, Colombia, in July 2019, in collaboration with Uniminuto de Dios University. It aimed to examine the P4wC program in relation to the ideal of the citizen-agent: one who understands citizenship not only as participation in social institutions, but also as a collaborative, critical activity to achieve a better society.


The 18th ICPIC conference entitled “Family Resemblances” took place in Madrid, Spain, in June 2017. It aimed to offer an open discussion around all the different approaches to philosophical inquiry with children in formal, non-formal and informal education. After nearly 50 years of engaging children, adolescents and adults in a Community of Philosophical Inquiry in various settings, a wide variety of methods and styles have been used that share some common features and family resemblances. This conference invited P4wC advocates and those working outside the framework to contribute ideas to the practice of philosophical dialogue.


The 17th ICPIC conference entitled Identity and Philosophical Inquiry in an Age of Diversity took place in Vancouver, Canada, in June 2015. It aimed to get a clearer picture of how to transform children’s vulnerability and disorientation regarding their increasingly multicultural, diverse, changing and ever more fragile environment so that they may learn to cultivate for themselves both compassion and agency. A central idea in ethical education has been the ideal of the self-sufficient, rational subject yet the ideals of democratic citizenship call for a more dialogically structured self in communication with diverse environments, as this conference explored.


The 16th ICPIC conference entitled Thinking and Reasoning in and beyond the Curriculum in Cape Town, South Africa, was the first to be held on the African continent. It examined the theory and practice of Philosophy for/with Children in all phases of schooling as well in informal educational contexts. Questions included: How can philosophical perspectives benefit education? How can educational research contribute to teaching thinking and reasoning, particularly in the mainstream curriculum subjects, like information technology, literacy, mathematics, sciences, life skills, the arts, drama, citizenship, physical and moral education?

The 13th ICPIC conference entitled Philosophical Inquiry with Children: A meeting Point Between Cultures and Identities offered an interdisciplinary investigation of the connection between philosophical inquiry, identity and culture. The conference was organized by the Israel Center for Philosophy in Education — “Philosophy for Life” together with the Hebrew University. Keynote Speakers were Joel Westheimer and Jane Roland Martin. Conference highlights included educational site visits to schools, a dialogue conducted by Jewish and Palestinian primary school children around the conference theme, and the final cultural party.

The 9th ICPIC conference entitled Thirty Years of Philosophy for Children on Debate took place in July 1999 at the Convention Center “Ulysses Guimarães” in Brasilia, in the Federal District of Brazil. Around 1,300 people from 30 countries participated in meaningful exchanges looking back on the first three decades of P4wC practices. The University of Brasilia contributed immensely to the organizational effort. During the event, proceedings of the Iceland and Portugal conferences were also shared.

The 8th ICPIC Conference entitled “Philosophy for Children on Top of the World” took place in Akureyri, Iceland, and  was hosted by the University of Akureyri. Proceedings were published in a book of the same name, edited by Hreinn Pálsson, Brynhildur Sigurðardóttir and Barbara B. Nelson. The programme covered a variety of topics, such as the sacred-as-relationship in the community of inquiry, participation in a community of inquiry, reconstructing childhood, self-respect, megalopsychia and moral education, and “The Cage” a philosophical project.



Childhood and Philosophy is a research voice for ICPIC. In keeping with the organization’s lively and diverse character, the journal publishes papers in multiple languages to signify our commitment to increasing capacity among members to work and publish in their mother tongue. We see this as a metaphor of our ability to encompass a variety of perspectives—the basis for rethinking childhood and philosophy.

What do we publish?

Our multilingual journal consists of articles, transcripts, curricula, news, book reviews, project reports and graphics. It is a blind peer-reviewed publication and does not accept previously published submissions. Submissions may be sent electronically on an ongoing basis—we welcome not only scholarly essays and research articles but also reports from the field and lesson plans by philosophers and educators.



essay award

The Executive Committee of the International Council for Philosophical Inquiry with Children (ICPIC) is pleased to announce the 2021 competition for the ICPIC Biennial Award for Excellence in Interpreting Philosophy for/with Children. Essays must be submitted by 15 September 2021.

Every year theorists and practitioners engaged in the field of philosophical inquiry with young people contribute to the growing body of knowledge that sustains and challenges our work in this field. Exploring the connection between theory and practice, between philosophical practice and life, these scholars help to revitalize the P4wC community worldwide. As with any educational movement, our strength and growth rely on the capacity to report on significant practices, raise questions, seek connections, develop theories, investigate assumptions and assess our pedagogical methods. Our essay award is one way to do so…

For more information, contact research@icpic.org

The ICPIC Award of Excellence in Interpreting

Philosophy for/with Children

Since 2002, ICPIC offers an award of US $200 to the best submission of our essay competition, which aims to encourage emerging scholars to articulate fresh visions of the nature and significance of Philosophy for/with Children, and recognize their efforts in this regard:

The winning author will receive $200 USD.

The author will be invited to present the essay at a special session of the 2021 ICPIC Biennial Conference in Japan, where a member of the award committee will also offer commentary. (Attendance at the conference is highly encouraged but not required to participate in the essay competition.)

ICPIC will pay the author’s conference registration fee (unless paid by the author’s employer/institution).

The winning essay will be published in the ICPIC journal Childhood and Philosophy, where it will be noted that the essay won the award.





Arthur C. Wolf

“Affect and Philosophical Inquiry with Children”

Submit an Essay

As with any educational movement, ICPIC’s strength and growth depends not only on our work in the field, but on our capacity to report on significant innovations, raise questions, seek connections, develop and test theories, investigate assumptions and assess our educational practices. Scholars and practitioners engaged in the field of philosophical inquiry with children and youth often construct new knowledge and perspectives that sustain and challenge our work in this field. Since 2002 ICPIC has conducted a biennial essay competition to encourage emerging scholars to contribute to that work.

The award committee and its chair are selected from the ICPIC Research Committee, who are charged to judge the essay that best achieves the following broad criteria:

  Demonstrates innovation, such as: developing a new or reconstructed theory, evaluating significant new practices, raising and addressing significant new questions

  Demonstrates knowledge of relevant disciplinary research literature including, but not limited to research literature in Philosophy for/with Children (see Philosophy for Children topics in PhilPapers.org)

  Demonstrates proper use of philosophical and/or empirical (quantitative, qualitative, action and/or post-qualitative) research methods

  The author is a member of ICPIC.

  The author either has not held a position at a university or research institute, or is within the first five years of holding such a position.

  The essay has not already been published or submitted for publication elsewhere.

  The author agrees that, should they win the competition, the essay will be published in the ICPIC journal Childhood and Philosophy.

  Essays may be jointly written.

  There is no age limitation.

  Essays must be submitted electronically as a Microsoft Word file, with 12-point Times font and 1.5 line spacing, by “date to be determined” to essay@icpic.org.

  Essays should be formatted in the academic citation style appropriate to the type of research conducted (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.).

  Essays must include, on a separate page, the author’s name, contact information, city and country of residence, and a statement that the author meets the first four eligibility criteria listed above. The ICPIC Essay Award Committee Chair will remove this page before sending the essay to the Committee for blind review. If possible, the essay should not include details that otherwise identify the author.

  Essays are limited to a maximum of 7,000 words, including notes and bibliography.

  Essays may be submitted in the applicant’s native language but, if that language is not English, they must be accompanied by English translations.

(NOTE: If the author is unable to provide an English translation, the ICPIC Essay Award Committee Chair will endeavor to secure a translation for purposes of review by Award Committee members who are not able to read the paper in its original language.)


Past Awards Recipients


Natalie M. Fletcher

“Designing a space for thoughtful voices:
Aligning the ethos of zines with youth-driven philosophical inquiry”


Sara Liptai

“What is the meaning of this cup and that dead shark?
Philosophical inquiry with objects and works of art and craft”




Darren Chetty

“The Elephant in the Room: Picturebooks, Philosophy for Children and Racism”



Gilles Abel

“La Philosophie avec les enfants, entre patience et urgence : du paradoxe au défi”




Eduardo Harada Olivares

“Falacias y Pensamiento Multidimensional en la Filosofía para niños”



Barry Hymer

“If You Think of the World as a Piece of Custard: Gifted Children’s Use of Metaphor as a Tool for Conceptual Reasoning”




Clinton Golding

“‘That’s a Better Idea!’: Philosophical Progress and Philosophy for Children”


Juan Carlos Lago-Bornstein

“Filosofia para Niños y la Educación Social”


Stefano Oliverio

“Educating ‘Homo Videns’: Philosophy for Children as a Way of Countering the ‘Antimeditative Situation’ of our Time and of Fostering the Democratic Attitude”