Select Page


Meet the MANCEPT people

Richard Child


Tel: 0161 2754978

Office:  4.034 Arthur Lewis Building

Research Interests

I’m interested in all areas of Analytical Political Philosophy but my research currently focuses on theories of global justice, theories of punishment, and the relationship between justice and legitimacy.

Steve De Wijze

Role: Senior Lecturer


Tel: 0161 275-4882

Location: Arthur Lewis Building-4.053
School of Social Sciences
The University of Manchester
M13 9PL

Specific research interests

Philosophy and politics focusing on the following areas:

The interface between ethical constraints and effective political action, the problem of dirty hands and a political ethic.Anglo-American theories of justice – Rawls, Dworkin, Sandel, Walzer etc.Informal logic and argumentation theory.Democracy – theory and practice.Theories of secular accounts of evil.

Current research projects

I am currently finishing a manuscript on the problem of ‘dirty hands’.I co-editor the journal Representation (with Andrew Russell)

Tim Kenyon


I am an Honorary Fellow in Politics. Previously I have taught at the universities of Warwick, Liverpool, Manchester and York. I have also held research fellowships at Warwick, Liverpool and Manchester. For a considerable period of my career I worked across a number of areas of ‘government’ in the field of ‘public policy’, including within the Whitehall/Westminster sphere.


The major focus of my attention is to progress a book on labour’s entitlement to the product as a dimension of social justice with particular reference to ‘Ricardian Socialism’ / ‘left-libertarianism’ . This examines the manner in which 3 major traditions of thought (natural rights, political economy/utilitarianism and communitarianism) found expression in the efforts of the respective ‘Ricardian Socialists’ (Bray, Gray, Hodgskin, Thompson) to identify principles of distributive justice at a time of radical change in the processes of production and of population increase and dislocation. The project focus in particular upon the challenge represented by inter-generational factors and seeks to evaluate the extent to which the thinkers in question not only worked within evolving traditions but also anticipated unresolved issues that remain pertinent to this day. Several ‘themes’ pervade the project, most notably: (i) the inter-relationship between political economy and ethics, (ii) the extent to which respective Ricardian Socialist writers anticipated ‘left-libertarianism’ and (iii) the extent to which their diverse responses to a shared understanding of the predicament of labour says something about liberal pluralism. The methodology combines analytical and contextual approaches.

An attendant exercise is the attempt to write something , that might well be aimed at a more popular audience, dealing with inter-generational entitlements and access to markets (including the labour market).

Related but more tenuously is a long-standing interest in William Paley – an engagement motivated in part by the opportunity to access Paley’s private library.


I am the author of Utopian Communism and Political Thought in Early Modern England and am the editor of The Ricardian Socialists: Collected Works (inc. an extended introduction). Besides having articles published in a number of journals (History of Political Thought, Teaching Politics, Political Studies, Journal of the History of Philosophy, History of European Ideas, Politics, Government and Opposition, Contemporary Political Studies) I have contributed to numerous edited collections.

Stephen Hood

Role: Lecturer in Political Theory


Tel: 0161 3066929

Office:  2.029 Arthur Lewis Building

Research Interests

The main theme of my research is an evaluation of key socio-economic institutions, informed by liberal theories of distributive justice. In particular, I am interested in the role played by markets in the coordination of productive activity. I therefore focus closely upon questions relating to the appropriate scope and functioning of market institutions, and to potential conflicts between commercial behaviour or attitudes and that necessary to ensure the stability of a just society. Beyond this, I also have interests in democratic theory and the debate over ideal and nonideal theory.

Nicola Mulkeen


Role: Lecturer in Political Theory

Admin: Senior Organiser MANCEPT Workshops (2016-2018)

Research Interests

My Ph.D. research argues that exploitation can arise from a just background, via just steps, when we exercise our rightful liberty. The theory rests on the idea that exploitation can arise via a special category of luck, which I call ‘socially constructed luck’. By taking into account what John Rawls calls ‘background justice’, what G.A. Cohen refers to as an ‘accumulation problem’, I argue that socially constructed luck is brought about through a cumulative process of people freely exercising their moral rights. Unless the negative effects of this type of luck are offset, exploitative interactions can arise where people have no reasonable alternative but to enter a particular transaction. Importantly, by showing how luck egalitarianism connects to a conception of exploitation, the thesis defuses the principal objections that relational egalitarians raise against the former, and justifies the introduction of a basic right to a reasonable alternative.

Supervisors: Hillel Steiner, James Pattison & Jonathan Quong

Thesis examiners: Andrew Mason & Christian Schemmel

In addition to my PhD research, I am working on a monograph entitled Exploitation & Time: A Theory of Intergenerational Exploitation. I have also written an article on self-ownership and the pollution problem, which is forthcoming in CRISPP. Available here


I teach in several areas of contemporary political and moral philosophy, including my areas of research. For the academic year 2018/19 I will be contributing to teaching on the following modules:POLI30232 Gender, Sex and Politics (3rd Year) Convenor (with Stephen Hood)POLI30271 Political Morality (3rd Year) ConvenorPOLI60182 Governing in an Unjust World (MA) ConvenorPOLI10100 Study Skills (1st Year) ConvenorPOLI20881 Ideals of Social Justice (2nd Year) LecturerPOLI20961 Challenges to Democratic Politics (2nd Year) LecturerPOLI20602 Arguing About Politics (2nd Year) LecturerPOLI10702 Introduction to Political Theory (1st Year) LecturerDissertation Supervision (3rd Year)Dissertation Supervision (MA)

James Pattison

James Pattison is Professor of Politics at the University of Manchester.

His research interests currently lie in three related areas: (i) humanitarian intervention and the responsibility to protect (R2P); (ii) the use of private military and security companies, and (iii) Just War Theory and the alternatives to war.

On (i): His first monograph, Humanitarian Intervention and the Responsibility to Protect: Who Should Intervene?, was published by Oxford University Press in 2010. This book was awarded a ‘Notable Book Award’ in 2011 by the International Studies Association (International Ethics Section) and has recently been published in paperback, with a new preface on the intervention in Libya. His PhD on humanitarian intervention was awarded the Sir Ernest Barker Prize for Best Dissertation in Political Theory by the Political Studies Association. More recently, he has completed on a four-volume ‘Major Work’ on humanitarian intervention (published in 2014) for Sage in their Library of International Relations series. He is currently a co-investigator on an ESRC Seminar Series on the R2P and the rising powers.

On (ii): His second monograph is on the ethical issues surrounding the use of private military and security companies, The Morality of Private War: The Challenge of Private Military and Security Companies (Oxford University Press, 2014). This was based on research carried during an ESRC-funded project, “The Morality of Private War”, 2010-2012 (RES-000-22-4042). This has recently been awarded ‘Outstanding’ (the highest possible grade) in the End of Award Assessment.

On (iii): He is currently working on an AHRC-funded project on the ethics of the alternatives to war (AHRC Ref AH/LOO3783/1). This will consider the normative case for the alternatives to war, such as diplomatic criticism, arming rebel groups, and nonviolent resistence, and their relation to Just War Theory. He has published various articles on the ethics of force, including in the British Journal of Political Science, Ethics & International Affairs, International Theory, Journal of Applied Philosophy, Journal of Political Philosophy, and Review of International Studies.

Before joining Manchester, he was a Senior Lecturer in International Relations at the University of the West of England, Bristol.His CV can be downloaded here.

Miriam Ronzoni

Role: Reader in Political Theory


Location: Arthur Lewis Building
School of Social Sciences
The University of Manchester
M13 9PL

Clara Sandelin


Research Interests

My main research focus is the politics of migration, asylum and nationalism. I’m also interested in methodological questions in political theory, approaches to justice/injustice, as well as the history and theories of liberalism.

Christian Schemmel

Role: Lecturer in Political Theory

Tel.: 0161 2754771

Office: 4.005 Arthur Lewis Building

Personal website


University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL

Research interests

  • Contemporary political theory, with a particular focus on the following areas:
  • Theories of social/distributive justice and equality and their institutional implications
  • Liberalism and republicanism
  • Global justice
  • Political theory of the welfare state
  • Self-respect and other self-evaluative attitudes

I am a founding member, and currently Chair, of the Global Justice Network.

Liam Shields

Role: Senior Lecturer in Political Theory


Personal Website:


I am a Senior Lecturer in Political Theory working at the University of Manchester. I have research and teaching interests across contemporary political theory, and especially in the areas of distributive justice, equality of opportunity and education, and the distribution of parental rights. In my research and teaching I use the methods of analytic political theory to shed light on important and pressing practical debates about real world problems. For more information about my research and working papers see my personal website.


I have taught on a wide range of courses at undergraduate and graduate level. The courses for which I am primarily responsible are:

  • Arguing about Politics (2nd year UG)Children, the Family and Social Justice (3rd Year UG)Political Theory Research Training (MA)The Ethics of Killing (MA)REPORT THIS AD

Course outlines are available on the MANCEPT teaching page.

You can download the teaching and study materials I have created.


I would be pleased to provide doctoral supervision on justice and the family/children, sufficientarianism and its rivals, and more generally on distributive justice. Prospective doctoral students are welcome to contact me via email.

Hillel Steiner

Role: Emeritus Professor


Location: Arthur Lewis Building
School of Social Sciences
The University of Manchester
M13 9PL

Hillel Steiner is Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Manchester and was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 1999. A Canadian, he originally came to Britain to do his PhD here and has been on the faculty at Manchester ever since.The main focus of Hillel’s teaching and publications is contemporary philosophical work on freedom, rights and social justice. His major work is An Essay on Rights which won the Political Studies Association’s best book prize for 1994 and which advances a theory of distributive justice that has come to be known as left-libertarianism.He has held awards from the Economic and Social Research Council, the British Academy, the Nuffield Foundation and the Leverhulme Trust, and has delivered numerous lectures on his research at universities and conferences in Britain and abroad.His organisational memberships include ones in the American Philosophical Association, Aristotelian Society, Association for Legal and Social Philosophy, European Society for the History of Economic Thought, Political Studies Association, Society for Applied Philosophy, and the September Group.

Jeannine Bringmann

For my PhD, I am working on developing a neorepublican ideal of distributive justice. This topic allows me to combine my passion for issues of distributive justice with my interest in the nature of freedom. I first developed an academic interest in both these questions during my Bachelors in Liberal Arts and Sciences, where I was able to consider both from various – and interdisciplinary – perspectives. Amongst the latter, I have most enjoyed the philosophical one, and hence opted for an MA in Political Philosophy. More specifically, I am intrigued by republican philosophy, and have taken inspiration for both my MA thesis and now my PhD from this fascination.

Giacomo Floris

Role: Doctoral Researcher & Teaching Assistant

Admin: MANCEPT Workshop Organiser 2018

I am a PhD candidate in Political Theory at MANCEPT, University of Manchester. I hold an MA in Political Theory from the University of Manchester, and an MA in Philosophy from the University of Genova. I am mainly interested in moral and political philosophy, with special interests in the following areas: – moral equality; – respect and other evaluative attitudes; – distributive justice.Supervisors: Christian Schemmel and Liam Shields

Vittorio Gerosa

     Role: Doctoral Researcher & Teaching Assistant

     Admin: MANCEPT Workshops Organiser 2019, 2020, 2021



I am a Phd candidate at the University of Manchester. My research focuses on the possible role and functioning of so-called “deliberative mini-publics” (DMP) in our contemporary representative democracies. In the last decade, our political systems have witnessed a proliferation of innovative institutional devices aimed at increasing popular participation in political decision-making. Public consulations, citizens assemblies and alike are today widely advocated for their alleged ability to both improve the efficacy of public policies and repair for the democratic deficit of our complex societies. Within the field of political theory, we also find proposals conceiving DMP as the most promising way to realise deliberative democracy in large-scale social systems, so that they are often perceived as part of an unavoidable, and eventually desirable, process of parcelisation of the democratic public-sphere. Nevertheless, the democratic pedigree of DMP has also been questioned, sometimes. The aim of my research is, thus, that of determining whether an extensive use of DMP can actually be justified as a democratic improvement.

Research interests

Political and Democratic Theory, Deliberative Democracy, Deliberative Systems, Neo-Republicanism, Pragmatism

Academic supervisors

Dr. Christian Schemmel Dr. Miriam Ronzoni


MA – Philosophy and Political Theory, University of Manchester; MA – Philosophical Methods, University of Genoa; BA – Philosphy, University of Genoa.


2017 – 2018 – Teaching Assistant, “Challenges to Democratic Politics”, University of Manchester, Second year undergraduate course.

2018 – 2019 – Teaching Assistant, “Challenges to Democratic Politics”, University of Manchester, Second year undergraduate course.

2019 – 2020 – Teaching Assistant, “Ideals of Social Justice”, University of Manchester, Second year undergraduate course.

2021 – Teaching Assistant, “Introduction to Political Theory”, University of Manchester, First year undergraduate course.

Ruxandra Ivanescu

Role: Doctoral Researcher & Teaching Assistant

Admin: MANCEPT Workshops 2018 Organizer

I’m currently working on my PhD on self-ownership and the possibility of voluntary enslavement, where I argue that within a libertarian framework of justice accession into slavery is conceptually impossible. More generally, I’m interested in moral philosophy and jurisprudence, especially in theories of distributive justice, rights theories, bioethics.

I hold a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Bucharest and an M.A. in Political Theory from the Goethe University, Frankfurt.

Anh Le

Role: Doctoral Researcher and Graduate Teaching Assistant

I’m a PhD researcher working on the ethics on the use of force short of war. I aim to formulate moral principles for this category, which is termed Jus ad Vim and specify how they differ from jus ad bellum and Jus in bello. I’m also interested in the ethics of self-defence, political obligation and collective responsibility.

Tawan Manakun

My general interests include freedom, property, distributive justice, republicanism, political economic thought, social-choice theory, and their implications on the design of public institutions. My PhD research topic is focusing on the use of non-domination concept to organise the well-designed property system. The project is under supervision of Miriam Ronzoni and Christian Schemmel. Before coming to the MANCEPT, I hold a bachelor’s degree in political science from Thammasat University (Thailand) and Master’s degrees in political theory from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Davide Pala

Davide Pala

Role: Doctoral Researcher and Teaching Assistant


I am a PhD candidate in political theory at MANCEPT, University of Manchester. I hold an MA and a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Turin. In my research i try to develop and ne-republican approach to human rights.

Supervisors: Miriam Ronzoni & Christian Schemmel

Matthew Perry

Matthew Perry is a current PhD student in Politics at The University of Manchester. He completed his BA in Philosophy Politics and Economics at The University of Manchester in 2018. Subsequently, he was offered an ESRC 1+3 studentship in Political Theory, through which he completed his MA in 2019.  His research, situated in Political Theory, seeks to explain the possession of so-called “Human” rights through interrogating the idea often established at their foundation: dignity. Among other things, he is interested in attending to: the status of and human differentiation from non-human animals, the problem of equalising status, what the recognition of dignity amounts to and finally, questions of how we understand our mutual obligations in light of the novel perspectives a fuller, non-speciesist understanding of dignity might give rise to.

Supervisors: Dr Liam Shields and Dr Richard Child

Molly Powell

Role: PhD Researcher

My research focuses on digital privacy rights, technical solutions and state obligations. I suggest that states should force private actors to design technologies in a privacy-sensitive way, where possible precluding privacy violations entirely. Punishing violations after the fact instead of doing so fails to take the privacy rights of individuals seriously enough.

Supervisors: Miriam Ronzoni and Richard Child

Joseph T F Roberts

Admin: MANCEPT Workshops Organiser

I am currently writing a thesis on the moral permissibility of Body Modification Practices and, specifically, whether or not we have rights to pursue them without being interfered with by others.My current research focuses on the notion of respect for persons, what this requires and whether there are limits to the practices we can consent to. I also have interests in bioethics more generally and the permissibility of paternalism.Supervisors: Richard Child and Christian Schemmel

Vist my personal website.