CV

Philosophy Department, University of Reading, England RG6 6AA

www.luke-elson.org
luke.elson@reading.ac.uk

Employment and Education

2014– Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Reading.

2014 PhD in Philosophy (MA awarded 2009). University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

2005 BA Mathematics and Philosophy. Exeter College, Oxford.

Publications

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

(Forthcoming) 'What does incommensurability tell us about agency?' in Value Incommensurability: Ethics, Risk, and Decision-Making, edited by Henrik Andersson and Anders Herlitz.

(2019) 'Probabilistic Promotion and Ability', Ergo vol. 6, no. 34.

(2019) 'Can Streumer simply avoid Supervenience?', Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy vol. 16, no. 3.

(2017) 'Incommensurability as Vagueness: a Burden-Shifting Argument', Theoria 83: 341–363.

(2016) 'Tenenbaum and Raffaman on Vague Projects, the Self-Torturer, and the Sorites', in Ethics Vol. 126, No. 2, pp. 474–488.

(2014) 'Heaps and Chains: is the Chaining Argument for Parity a Sorites?', Ethics Vol. 124, No. 3, pp. 557–571.

(2014) 'Borderline Cases and the Collapsing Principle', Utilitas volume 26, issue 01, pp. 51–60.

Reviews and Other Pieces

(Forthcoming) Review of 'Companions in Guilt Arguments in Metaethics' by Christopher Cowie and Richard Rowland. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

(2018) 'How a moral philosopher justifies his carbon footprint': a general audience piece on carbon offsetting for The Conversation.

(2018) Review of David Sobel’s From Valuing to Value, Analysis, Volume 78, Issue 3, pp. 583–586.

(2016) Edited special edition of Ratio (with introduction) on Ethics and Indeterminacy.

Teaching

Undergraduate modules/courses

Intermediate (second-year) moral philosophy. Reading: Autumn 2014, Autumn 2015, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021.

Introduction to ethics. Reading: Spring 2015, 2016, 2019, 2020, 2021. Chapel Hill: Spring 2010.

Mediaeval philosophy. Reading: Autumn 2018, 2019, 2020; Chapel Hill: Summer 2013.

Reason, Value, and Knowledge: Autumn 2018, co-taught with Philip Stratton-Lake.

Logic. Reading: Spring 2015, Summer 2017; Chapel Hill: Fall 2013. Also as TA for Thomas Hofweber in Spring 2013.

Epistemology: Autumn 2015 (justification half only).

Introduction to Philosophy (online). Summer 2014.

Introduction to metaphysics. Summer 2012.

A literary introduction to philosophy. Summer 2011, Summer 2009. Also as TA for C.D.C. Reeve in Fall 2008.

Introduction to Bioethics (online). Summer 2010.

TA for Philosophy of Science with Marc Lange. Spring 2009.

Undergraduate supervision

Supervised multiple BA dissertations and independent research projects (mini-dissertations) each year since 2014.

Supervisor of Undergraduate Research Opportunity Projects:

Completed PhD supervision

Adam Pearce on the criminalisation of climate change, with Rob Jubb (politics).

Livia Luzzatto on the scope of climate justice, with Rob Jubb (politics).

Bradley Hillier-Smith on the ethics of responses to refugees, with Brad Hooker. Viva passed January 2021.

Seminars and classes for graduate students

Graduate Class Summer term 2021: my book manuscript 'unsharp choices'.

Graduate Class Spring 2016: Recent work on Incommensurability and Reasons.

Graduate Research Seminar (workshop). Summer 2015, Autumn 2019 onwards.

Staff-Student Reading Group. Spring 2015 on L.A. Paul, Transformative Experience.

Supervisor for multiple MRes Essays and Dissertations per year since 2015. Topics include: Presentism and Truthmaker Theory, The Justification of War, Psychological Egoism, Moral Overridingness, Anarchism, Nudge, Sceptical Theism, the Problem of Evil.

Professional Activities and Service

Reviewer for: Analysis, Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Economics and Philosophy, Erkenntnis, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, Ethics, Journal of the American Philosophical Association, Journal of Ethics, Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy, Journal of Philosophy, Journal of Value Inquiry, Mind, Noûs, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, Philosophical Quarterly, Review of Philosophy and Psychology, Routledge, Synthese, Theoria, Utilitas.

Equalities Officer, British Society for Ethical Theory. 2021--

Reviewer for Horizon 2020 Fellowship proposals for the European Union.

PhD examining:

Conferences and workshops organised

(24 April 2021) Workshop in honour of Brad Hooker, with Charlotte Newey. Reading.

(2018 March) Southern Normativity Group annual Conference, Reading. https://philevents.org/event/show/37926

(2017 October) Moral and Rational Uncertainty one-day workshop, with Society for Applied Philosophy funding, Reading (with Patrick Tomlin).

(2015 April) Indeterminacy in Ethics annual Ratio conference, Reading.

Impact and Outreach

Panel member, public discussion on carbon offsetting. City Conversations, London. November 2019.

Numerous webinars for Ethical Reading, on topics including moral luck and moral dilemmas.

Recorded 'A' Level revision videos for Massolit.

Current administrative roles at Reading

Directory of Postgraduate Research Studies. 2019–

Part (year) 3 co-ordinator. 2019–

Website, blog, and social media administrator. 2014–

PPE co-ordinator: July 2021–

Philosophy department representative and core group member for School of Humanities Athena SWAN application. Implemented diagnostic survey of school members and conducted focus group. 2018–

Past adminstrative roles at Reading

Internal panelist for Periodic Review of Department of Computer Science. March 2019.

Part (year) 2 co-ordinator. 2018–19

Philosophy Admissions Tutor. 2018-19

Welcome (freshers) week co-ordinator. 2018-19

Convenor, Visiting Speaker series and liaison with undergraduate Philosophy Society. 2014--2017

Reading representative at the UK-China Philosophy Programme meetings at Queen's College, Oxford and King's College, London. Spring and Summer 2016.

Member, Interview Panel for Graduate Teaching Assistant. July 2015.

Administrative roles at UNC Chapel Hill

Organiser, UNC Philosophy Work in Progress Series. 2008–09 and 2013–14.

External Advisor, Southern Alamance County High School Ethics Bowl Team. 2011–13.

Graduate Assistant, UNC Philosophy Colloquium. 2008–09 and 2011.

Philosophy Representative, UNC Graduate and Professional Student Federation. 2011–12.

Professional Memberships: UK Higher Education Academy (Fellow since September 2016), Mind Association, British Society for Ethical Theory, American Philosophical Association.

Grants, Awards, and Prizes

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship, 'Austere Reasons.' Held at the University of Reading, July 2017 to August 2018. Value: €114,015.30

2020 Research Fellowship (2 terms of teaching relief and £500 travel fund), University of Reading. Autumn 2015 and Spring 2016.

Travel Awards from University of Reading:

Mind Association Conference Grant (£500) for Indeterminacy in Ethics conference, April 2015.

Prize for best graduate student paper. North Carolina Philosophical Society. February 2013.

Non-teaching Fellowships UNC Philosophy Department. 2007–2008, Fall 2012, Spring 2014.

UNC Richard Brooke Scholarship. 2008–2010 and 2011–2012.

Travel Award (x9). UNC Department of Philosophy and graduate school. 2012–13.

Presentations

[*] means selected after anonymous review.

Incommensurability and Counterfactuals

Indeterminacy and Agency

Nihilistic Despair

A New Maximising Rule for Unsharp Credences and Preferences

Ought implies Can implies Moral Rationalism

A Pessimistic Note on Climate Rationality

Ability and Promotion

The Size of the Universe and Nihilism

How Implausible is Satisficing Utilitarianism?

Indeterminacy and Permissibility

A Satisficing Response to Gratuitous Harm

Satisficing, Arbitrariness, and Indeterminacy

Tenenbaum and Raffaman on Vague Projects, the Self-Torturer, and the Sorites

Self-Torture as Practical Sorites

Incommensurability as Comparative Borderlineness

Comments

On Farbod Akhlaghi-Ghaffarokh's An Argument for the Metaphysical Necessity of Moral Principles at the Second Metaethics Workshop. University of Groningen. 2019.

On Rachel Handley's Quasi-Realism, Disagreement, and Fundamental Error at the Conference by Women in Philosophy. Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam. July 2018.

On Anne Meylan, 'Reasons-Responsiveness and the Basing Relation,' at 'Epistemic and Practical Normativity: Meta-Normative Problems and Proposals,' Southampton, June 2015.

On Stewart Eskew, 'Moral Supervenience and Moral Knowledge: How Not to Defend Moral Perception' at APA Eastern Division. Baltimore, MD. December 2013.

On Shane George, 'Why Hard Cases are Incommensurable' at Central States Philosophical Association. Oklahoma State University, Tulsa. October 2013.

On Carl Posy, 'Kantian Discipline and the Paradoxes of Knowledge' at UNC/Hebrew University Workshop. Jerusalem. May 2013. (My comments were delivered by proxy.)

On Ayca Boylu, 'Thick Concepts and Intrinsic Goodness Attributions' at APA Pacific Division. San Francisco, CA. March 2013.