I’m Reader in Philosophy at Birkbeck College, and a Visiting Fellow at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR). I work in social epistemology, both theoretical and applied, with a particular interest in the value of truth and what empirical psychology and different types of statistical models might tell us about how that value likely propagates (or fails to propagate) throughout social structures under different social circumstances and interventions.
On the theoretical side, I’ve worked on
a type of epistemic value monism on which true belief is the only fundamental epistemic value;
a form of epistemic paternalism on which we’re sometimes justified in interfering with the inquiry of others without their consent but for their own epistemic good; and
cognitive outsourcing, i.e., the handing over (outsourcing) of one’s information collection and processing (the cognitive).
As for applied social epistemology, I’ve
done experimental work on self-resolving information markets to explore if such markets can be made to match traditional markets in accuracy, without relying on external events in settling pay-offs.
At present, I’m
working on the possibility of addressing problems of public ignorance by determining electoral outcomes by way of models of fully informed preferences, which raises interesting questions not only about political legitimacy, but also about how to build models of political behaviour;
exploring how people process evidence of the economic impact of immigration together with the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR); and
defending epistemic consequentialism (see here and here) in a project with Jeff Dunn (DePauw), funded by the British Academy. As part of the project, Jeff and I edited a volume on epistemic consequentialism for Oxford University Press, and are working on a book-length defence of ‘epistemic utilitarianism.’
For more on my research projects, past and present, see my research projects page.
I live in north east London with my wife and son. Whenever the three of us get a chance, we travel.
You'll find my contact information at the foot of this page.