People Feature

Lars Moen

Junior Visiting Scholar

I am a Ph.D. candidate at the Australian National University in Canberra, and a visiting scholar at Nuffield in Trinity Term 2019. My research is in political philosophy and philosophy of social science.

In my doctoral dissertation, I take a critical view of Philip Pettit's republicanism. I analyse Pettit's core concept of republican freedom, which is the absence of domination, and identify weaknesses in this acccount of freedom that are not present in the liberal freedom concept, which is the absence of interference. I also show how republicanism is closely related to John Rawls's political liberalism. In parallel to this comparison between Pettit and Rawls, I develop an alternative republican theory, which is distinct from political liberalism. Most importantly, this more distinctly republican theory rejects liberal neutrality towards individuals' preferences.

On the more philosophy of social science side of my research, I focus on recent works on group agency—that is, the idea that groups can be intentional agents in their own right, over and above the individuals constituting the groups. I remain skeptical of this idea, first of all because it neglects the importance of strategic interaction between group members.

Lars Moen