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Post-Doctoral Research Fellow on the ERC-funded project Group Thought: New Foundations Faculty of Arts

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow on the ERC-funded project Group Thinking: New Foundations, School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science, Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures


Are you an outstanding researcher in philosophy or related area? Do you have a developing research record and an ability to work as part of a research team? Are you keen to work on a ground-breaking research project funded by the European Research Council?

We are looking for talented researchers to join the ERC-funded project Group Thinking: New Foundations (2019-2024), led by Prof. J. Robert G. Williams. This project explores group thought: its nature, and its significance for explanatory projects inside and outside philosophy. It seeks to reveal the underlying unity between the facts that constitute the beliefs and desires of individuals, and the facts that constitute the beliefs and desires of groups. It will provide criteria for demarcating which groups genuinely have beliefs and desires, distinguishing this situation from circumstances when attributing beliefs and desires is mere “loose talk”. The aim is new and rigorous foundations for theory and for public discourse about group belief and desire. 

The project draws on several fields of philosophy including:

  • Philosophy of mind and language (e.g. metasemantics, metaphysics of mental content, collective intentionality, group attitudes in psychological theory). 

  • Metaphysics (e.g. social ontology, personal identity, group persistence).

  • Formal Epistemology (e.g. representation theorems, social choice, analysis of common knowledge, judgement aggregation)

  • Philosophy of action (e.g. nature and grounding of intention, collective action). 

  • Philosophy of normativity (e.g. nature of reasons and rationality, group reasons) 

  • Ethics/political philosophy (e.g. group attitudes and duties, legitimacy, complicity). 


You will have a PhD (by start of post) in philosophy or an allied discipline. As one of two postdocs involved in the project, you will an integral part of a eight-member project team, pursuing independent work related to the overall project theme. You will also work as a research assistant to the PI, and will be expected to be involved in planning and running collaborative activities of the project group, as well as undertaking administrative work associated with the project.
You will be based at the University of Leeds and will be expected to take an active role in the overall research life and culture of the department. There will be opportunity for career development by undertaking a small amount of teaching and administration roles related to project themes.
We particularly welcome applications from candidates belonging to groups that have been traditionally underrepresented in philosophy, including but not limited to women and ethnic minorities.

Please upload the following as 4 separate documents:


1. A cover letter, which should specify areas of specialisation and areas of competence, as well as a PhD completion date (or expected completion date). 


2. A standard C.V., including a list of peer-reviewed publications.


3. A research writing sample (maximum 10,000 words).


4. A research proposal (maximum 1000 words) describing a programme of research complementary to the project aims.

To explore the post further or for any queries you may have, please contact:

Professor J. Robert G. Williams

Email: J.R.G.Williams@leeds.ac.uk


Location:  Leeds - Main Campus
Faculty/Service:  Faculty of Arts, Humanities & Cultures
School/Institute:  School of Philosophy, Religion & History of Science
Category:  Research
Grade:  Grade 7
Salary:  £33,199 to £39,609 p.a.
Working Time:  100%
Post Type:  Full Time
Contract Type:  Fixed Term (4 years from 1 September 2019)
Release Date:  Monday 07 January 2019
Closing Date:  Tuesday 05 February 2019
Reference:  AHCPR1022
Downloads:  Candidate Brief  

The closing date for this job opportunity has now passed, and applications are no longer being accepted for this position

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