Dr Jussi Suikkanen PhD, Dr Soc Sc, M Soc SC



Department of Philosophy

Photograph of Jussi Suikkanen

Contact details

ERI Building
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


I have been a lecturer in philosophy here at the University of Birmingham since September 2010. I have a wide range of interests in philosophy. Whilst my own research (described below) mainly focuses on the theoretical side of moral philosophy, I am also very keen on philosophy of language, epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy of mind, and history of philosophy.

The Philosophy department here at Birmingham offers me a great place to talk about all these areas with my colleagues and students.


I did my PhD in philosophy at the University of Reading where I was supervised by Professors Brad Hooker and Philip Stratton-Lake. I graduated from Reading 2008. The title of my thesis was Contractualist Principles and Wrongness. I also have another doctorate in philosophy from the Department of Social and Moral philosophy at the University of Helsinki where I also did my masters.


I joined the Philosophy department at the University of Birmingham in September 2010. Before that I was a temporary lecturer at the Universities of Reading (2009-2010) and Leeds (2008-2009). I have also been a visiting scholar at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (2006-2007).


This academic year 2012-2013, in the autumn, I am the module convener for the History of Philosophy A (on Descartes) and Contemporary Political Philosophy modules. During the spring term, I will convene the Metaethics and Locke and Hume modules. In addition, I teach seminars on the Philosophical Texts module and convene the PG seminar.

Previously I have taught courses on global ethics, philosophical research methods, continental philosophy, media ethics, philosophy of sex and love, Early Modern philosophy (Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant), and philosophy of the ‘self’. I have also taught general introduction courses on both philosophy and ethics.

Postgraduate supervision

I am more than happy to supervise PG students on the following areas:

  • Metaethics
  • Ethical theories
  • Practical reason, reasons, and value theory
  • Free will and Personal Identity
  • Political Philosophy
  • Realism and anti-realism debates
  • Early modern philosophy

I have supervised Masters dissertations on topics such as egoism, the Euthyphro contrast, animal ethics, ethics of parenting, human enhancement and so on. I am also currently a supervisor for two PhD students - Sabrina Intelisano who is working on happiness and imprisonment and Reza Mosner who is working on the interpretations of Tractatus


My main research interests lie in metaethics and ethical theories. I have mainly worked on the nature of moral properties, moral judgments, and truth in ethics. In normative ethics, I have defended and developed Scanlonian contractualism. I am also currently interested in the so-called consequentializing project. I have previously written on value and reasons, practical reason, and rationality. In the applied ethics, my main focus has been on aggregation and population ethics. And, I have also explored the realism vs. anti-realism debates more generally in philosophy.

I am currently writing a textbook on ethics but at the same time I am also planning to write a book about the relationship between metaethics and normative ethics after this.

video transcript

Other activities



  • This is Ethics! This is Philosophy! series, Blackwell. Under contract.
  • Essays on Derek Parfit's On What Matters, Blackwell, 2009, co-edited with John Cottingham.

Selected Articles

  • 'Contractualism and the Conditional Fallacy'. Provisionally forthcoming in Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics 4, 2014.
  • 'Consequentialist Options'. Forthcoming in Utilitas.
  • 'Moral Error Theory and the Belief Problem'. Forthcoming in Oxford Studies in Metaethics 8, 2013.
  • 'Reason-Statements as Non-Extensional Contexts'. Philosophical Quarterly 62, 2012, 592-613.
  • 'An Improved Whole Life Satisfaction Theory of Happiness'. International Journal of Wellbeing, 2011, 1-18.
  • 'The Possibility of Love Independent Reasons'. Essays in Philosophy 12, 2011, 32–54.
  • 'Non-Naturalism: the Jackson Challenge'. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 5, 2010, 87-110.
  • 'The Subjectivist Consequences of Expressivism'. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90, 2009, 364–387.
  • 'Consequentialism, Constraints, and the Good-Relative-to: A Reply to Mark Schroeder'. Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy, 2009.
  • 'Buck-Passing Accounts of Value'. Philosophy Compass 4, 2009, 768–779.
  • 'A Dilemma for Rule-Consequentialism'. Philosophia 36, 2008, pp. 141–150.
  • 'Reasons and Value – A Defence of the Buck-Passing Account'. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 7, 2005, 513–535.
  • 'Contractualist Replies to the Redundancy Objections'. Theoria 71, 2005, pp. 38–58.
  • 'What We Owe to Many'. Social Theory and Practice 30, 2004, 485–506.

Selection of Recent Talks

  • “Contractualism and the Conditional Fallacy”. Fourth Annual Arizona Normative Ethics Workshop, Tucson, Arizona, US, 3.–5. 1. 2013; The British Society for Ethical Theory Conference, University of Stirling, Stirling, UK, 9.–11. 7. 2012.
  • “Moral Error Theory and the Belief Problem”. Eight Annual Metaethics Workshop, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA, 16.–18. 9. 2011.
  • “Reason-Statements as Non-Extensional Contexts”. St Louis Annual Conference on Reasons and Rationality, University of Missouri-St Louis, St Louis, Missouri, USA, 22.–24. 5. 2011.
  • “Restricted Constructivism”. Workshop on Constructivism and Practical Reason, Philosophy department, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK, 20. 6. 2009.
  • “Non-Naturalism: the Jackson Challenge”. Fifth Annual Metaethics Workshop, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA, 12.–14. 9. 2008.
  • “Minimalist Contractualism”. Monday moral philosophy seminar, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, 28. 5. 2007.

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