Dr Iain Law MA (Aberdeen), MPhil, PhD (Birmingham)

Senior Lecturer in Philosophy
Head of Department of Philosophy

Contact details

ERI Building
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

About

I’m a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy and also Head of Education for the School of Philosophy, Theology & Religion. My main interests are in meta-ethics, applied ethics and ethical theory, and I’m currently working on papers in moral theory, moral psychology, the philosophy of medicine and applied ethics.

Qualifications

  • MA Philosophy (Aberdeen)
  • MPhil (Birmingham)
  • PhD (Birmingham

Biography

I’m a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy and also Head of Education for the School of Philosophy, Theology & Religion. My main interests are in meta-ethics, applied ethics and ethical theory, and I’m currently working on papers in moral theory, moral psychology, the philosophy of medicine and applied ethics. I’m also, with Lisa Bortolotti and Heather Widdows, a founding member of the Health and Happiness Research Cluster. This cluster undertakes research, runs a Masters programme on Health and Happiness and various workshop and seminar series on these themes, as well as producing co-authored publications. I published in Lisa Bortolotti’s collection on happiness, for example. In addition together Iain, Lisa and Heather supervise a number of students working on definitions of health, and health practice and policy.

Teaching

 I teach Political Philosophy to first years, Virtue Ethics to third years, and various texts/skills modules to second years. I also contribute to several of our MA/MSc programmes.

Postgraduate supervision

Currently supervising PhD students working on: Natural Law approaches to ethics; competence and informed consent; self-deception and doxastic voluntarism.

Research

  • Moral theory in general including Kantianism, Utilitarianism, Virtue Ethics, etc. 
  • Moral Psychology, autonomy, (moral) motivation. 
  • The philosophy of health and disease. 
  • Wellbeing and happiness

Publications

  • 'Improvement and Truth in Quasi-Realism', Cogito, 10, 1996.
  • 'The Hierarchical Mode of Autonomy', Cogito, 12, 1998.
  • 'Rule-Consequentialism's Dilemma', Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, vol 12, no 3, 1999
  • 'Morals, Methods and Madness', Res Publica, vol 6, no 1, 2000
  • ‘Autonomy, Sanity and Moral Theory’, Res Publica, vol 9, No 1, 2003
  • ‘Utilitarianism and Human Rights’, The Essential Guide to Human Rights, Christien van den Anker & Rhona Smith, eds.  Hodder Arnold.  2005.
  • (with Heather Widdows) 'Conceptualising Health: Insights from the Capability Approach', Health Care Analysis, forthcoming in print 2008 (published 'online first' in October 2007 )
  • 'Evil Pleasure is Good for You!', vol. 17 no. 1,  2008
  •  ‘Happiness and Preference-Satisfaction’, Philosophy and Happiness, Lisa Bortolotti, ed. Palgrave. 2009
  • ‘Motivation, Depression and Character’ Psychiatry as Cognitive Neuroscience: Philosophical Perspectives, Matthew Broome & Lisa Bortolotti, eds. OUP.  2009
  • 'The Irrelevance of Direction of Fit'. available online

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