For a list of papers, click here.
As human agents, we are constantly faced with normative questions about what to do, think, and feel. I am interested in all areas of philosophy that address such questions, including ethics, metaethics, epistemology, and the philosophy of mind and action.
Much of normative theory is devoted to investigating what the standards are for actions, thoughts, and feelings. But it matters to us not just that our actions and attitudes accord with these standards, but that we are actually guided by them in acting, thinking, and feeling. As such, it is of utmost importance that we understand not just what the standards are, but also what it is to be guided by them.
My primary research project addresses precisely these questions. In it, I develop and defend a reasons-based account of what I call normative achievements. While there are many standards our actions and attitudes can fail or succeed at meeting, there's something special about ones like rationality, knowledge, and moral worth. When we meet these standards, we've achieved something in the sense that we're necessarily creditworthy for our success. Such successes are normative achievements. I argue that what unifies normative achievements is that they consist in exercises of rational agency - our capacity to act, believe and feel for reasons. As part of this project: