1) Interesting Recent Exchange on the Problem of Natural Evil Alexander Bird is known for his work on dispositional essentialism and, relatedly, his arguments for the metaphysical necessity of the laws of nature (a view which is growing in acceptance among philosophers, I might add).
Recently, Bird had an exchange with Michael Bertrand on the problem of natural evil in The Australasian Journal of Philosophy. The exchange is based on some brief remarks at the end of Bird's paper, "Unexpected A Posteriori Necessary Laws of Nature", Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83:4 (December 2005), pp. 533-548. Bertrand's reply, "God Might Be Responsible for Physical Evil", AJP 87:3 (September 2009), pp. 513-515 can be found here (requires subscription for access), and (the pre-print version of) Bird's rejoinder, "...And Then Again, He Might Not Be", AJP 87(2009), pp. 517-521, can be found here.
I find Bird's reply to the problem of natural evil the most plausible. Unfortunately, as he points out, it comes at a high cost, as it relies on a view according to which the laws of nature are metaphysically necessary, which in turn implies that miracles are metaphysically impossible(!). ---Taken from Ex-Apologist
2) Here is another paper that can be used along the similar lines to Alexander Bird's position except that it would allow for the possibility of miracles.
Otte had an exchange with Plantinga on the latter's famous Free Will Defense (FWD) in a recent issue of Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. In Otte's paper, he shows that Plantinga's definition of transworld depravity (TWD) is necessarily false(!). However, Otte goes on to offer an alternative notion that plays a similar role in Plantinga's FWD. Interestingly, Plantinga agrees with Otte's points (Taken from ex-apologist).
Summary Excerpts From Kenneth Boyce's Article in Faith and Philosophy:
A weakness in Plantinga’s free will defense, however, is that it does not show that theism is consistent (broadly logically
consistent) with the proposition that there are non-moral evils in the world (i.e., that there obtain morally bad states of affairs for which no creature is morally responsible). But many of us do believe that there are evils of that sort. I show how Plantinga’s free will defense can be extended so as to redress this weakness.
See my response to the Problem of Social Evil here: http://www.apologeticsinthechurch.com/4/post/2011/12/the-problem-of-social-evil.html
and my response to Paul Draper's Argument involving Evolution and Theism here: http://www.apologeticsinthechurch.com/4/post/2011/11/natural-selection-and-the-problem-of-evil.html
and my response to why God would use evolution and whether or not it is cruel and wasteful here: http://www.apologeticsinthechurch.com/27/post/2012/01/isnt-evolution-evil-and-wasteful.html
Alexander Pruss' Response: