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Key staff members are Dario Castiglione, Ross Carroll, Robin Durie, Iain Hampsher-Monk, Robert Lamb, Sarah Drews Lucas, James Muldoon, and Andrew Schaap.

Several other staff members are affiliated with the programme both from within the department and from other disciplines.

We also have a number of excellent Doctoral Students and MA students.

More details about our researchers can be found on their individual profile pages.

Dr Dario Castiglione

Centre Director

Dario Castiglione’s main areas of research comprise democratic theory and the history of early modern political philosophy. He has written on representation, citizenship and constitutionalism; theories of civil society and social capital; the constitutional nature of the European Union; the Scottish Enlightenment, Hume and Mandeville; and 18th-century theories of the social contract and of their crittiques, and early modern scepticism. His main current research interests are on representation and political legitimacy; and the way in which political and conceptual discourses translates across linguistic and cultural divides

Dr Sarah Drews Lucas

Sarah Drews Lucas's areas of research are feminist philosophy and critical theory. She works on questions of agency, autonomy, care ethics, communicability, narrative, and personal identity. Her current projects focus on feminist narrative agency and on ordinary language philosophy and the ethics of care. She is also interested in gender and politics, ancient political theory, contemporary political theory, continental philosophy, human rights, and the work of Hannah Arendt.

Dr Ross Carroll

Ross Carroll's research interests are in the history of early modern political thought, with a focus on eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain and France. His first book, Uncivil Mirth: Ridicule in Enlightenment Britain (Princeton 2021), recovers the Enlightenment debate on the appropriate use of ridicule as an instrument of moral and political reform. He has also published recently on Mary Wollstonecraft's views on political economy, the history of contempt as a political and moral concept, and the hidden intellectual labour performed by the wives of great political thinkers such as Alexis de Tocqueville. At present Carroll is writing a short book on Edmund Burke and plans a future research project on the political thought of the French political theorist and abolitionist, Gustave de Beaumont.

Dr Robin Durie

Robin Durie's research interests lie in continental political philosophy and public policy. He has expertise in the history of phenomenology, as well as the writings of Bergson and Deleuze, and has published work on problems of time, change and difference. Based on primary research in complexity theory, he has investigated processes of change in the National Health Service, alongside processes of social and urban regeneration as a founding member of the Connecting Communities [C2] programme. With C2, he is currently collaborating on a major new initiative with the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit in Glasgow. He has received EPSRC funding to investigate the themes of 'sustainability', and the evolution of artificial culture, from the perspective of theories of emergence. He was the Academic Lead for the RCUK-funded Exeter Catalyst for Public Engagement, and is currently Director for Engaged research at the Wellcome Centre for Cultures & Environments of Health. He is a member of the Lancet Commission investigating The Value of Death, the Report of which is due to be published in late 2021.

Professor Iain Hampsher-Monk

Iain Hampsher-Monk’s own research interests lie in early-modern political thought and discourse, in particular, in republican thought and its naturalisation in British political thinking, in seventeenth and eighteenth-century radicalism, the political thought of Edmund Burke and his contemporaries, and in methodological problems associated with the history and understanding of the political thought of the past. He also works and publishes on contemporary political thought, particularly in areas associated with democratic theory, toleration and theories of equality.

Professor Robert Lamb

Robert Lamb is interested in the history of political ideas, contemporary political theory, and philosophical issues related to the interpretation and understanding of texts. The main focus of his research is the intellectual tradition of modern liberalism – understood very broadly, and from the eighteenth century to the present – and its central political commitments. His published work has concerned historical and philosophical understandings of moral and political concepts such as human rights, property, equality, and freedom, and writers such as Locke, Paine, Rawls, and Rorty. His current research looks at the idea of political hope.

Dr Bice Maiguashca

Bice Maiguashca's research has focused on a set of questions around the origins, strategic trajectory and political significance of contemporary forms of left-wing politics, in general and feminist activism, in particular.

Professor Catriona McKinnon

Catriona MacKinnon’s main research interest is currently in the area of climate justice and climate ethics. Her research adopts a broadly liberal approach which reflects her other research interests in contemporary liberal political philosophy (especially Rawls), and the theory and practice of toleration. In her work, she takes seriously what we owe to future people in the face of the climate crisis. Although most of her work has been in 'pure' political philosophy, she is increasingly engaged in transdisciplinary work on climate justice in order to better inform climate policy. Before coming to Exeter she was the Director of the Leverhulme Doctoral Programme in Climate Justice, and Director of the Centre for Climate and Justice, both at the University of Reading.


Dr James Muldoon

James Muldoon’s current research interest is on the digital co-operative economy and fairer alternatives to platforms such as Uber, Airbnb and Deliveroo. He is currently working on two grants: “Platforming Equality: Policy Challenges for the Digital Economy” funded by the ESRC and “Co-Designing a Food Delivery Platform Co-operative” with assistance from Not-Equal, a UKRI funding network. His previous research has examined political campaigning, social movements and political parti; in particular the democratic socialist tradition in the European labour movement, including study of workers’ councils and the political thought of figures such as Rosa Luxemburg, Karl Kautsky, Anton Pannekoek, Karl Korsch and Richard Müller. His other research interests comprise the rise of populism and the electoral success of the far right; the traditions of community organising; and in political philosophy, German Idealism, French post-structuralists, and Italian post-Marxists.


Dr Andrew Schaap

Andrew Schaap’s main area of research is contemporary political theory. His book Political Reconciliation drew on the thought of Hannah Arendt to conceptualize reconciliation as a political undertaking in societies divided by a history of state violence. His is broadly interested in theories of radical democracy, and particularly in the politics of migration, racism and anti-racist politics, political struggles of indigenous peoples, transitional justice, politics and literature, and political thought of the twentieth century.

Affiliated staff