Research course


University of Liverpool · Department of Philosophy

Entry requirements

For full entry requirement details, please see the course page on the University website.

Months of entry


Course content

The Department of Philosophy seeks to maintain the highest standard in research excellence while pursuing fruitful civic engagements, collaborative relationships and opportunities for knowledge exchange and research impact.

Our work encompasses a wide range of philosophical topics and traditions grouped in three principal areas:

Members of the Metaphysics, Language and Mind group have research interests spanning general metaphysics, the philosophy of mind, the philosophy of language, and the philosophy of logic. The topics staff currently work on include consciousness, space and time, modality, nominalism, the self, philosophy of action, linguistic idealism, and the nature of the proposition.

The Religion, Ethics and Practical Philosophy group carries forward a strong Liverpool tradition of producing world class, practical philosophy research that draws on expertise in many traditions. The philosophical interests of this group are diverse, encompassing ethics, philosophy of religion, environmental philosophy, political philosophy, feminism and women in philosophy, Indian philosophy and history of philosophy, but share a focus on practical import.

Aesthetics, Art and Literature is a distinctly interdisciplinary group that takes advantage of the fact that Liverpool has the highest density of art galleries and museums outside London. As well as working on more traditional topics in aesthetics and philosophy of literature, it enables researchers from different academic disciplines to exchange ideas and methods, to collaborate across traditional boundaries, and to work closely with other institutions and the community on issues of intellectual and cultural importance. The research interests of this group include: aesthetics and art theory, philosophy and literature, history of art, creativity, engaging with museum collections, archiving, and science fiction.

Staff in the department have senior editorial roles in leading journals within their research areas. For example, Professor Thomas Schramme is co-editor in chief of Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, Professor Simon Hailwood is Managing Editor of Environmental Values.

Our work involves collaboration with colleagues in a wide variety of national and international universities and partner organisations. For instance, we ran a project with colleagues in the Universities of Dortmund, Münster and Potsdam exploring new ways to understand the concept of alienation. We also collaborate regularly with a wide range of faith groups and others, including legal practitioners, as well as scholars of religion, to bring philosophy into close contact with religious practice. Recent projects in this area include the Philosophy and Religious Practices network and work on Religious Symbols and Discrimination.

Further recent or ongoing partnerships and collaborations include the Global Institute for Advanced Studies (New York University), the European Union’s Creative Research Adaptive Roadmap Project, the Tyndale Fellowship for Biblical and Theological Research, Tate Liverpool, the Bluecoat Gallery, Budapest Central European University and the Universities of Durham, Exeter, Konstanz, Mannheim, Münster, Rochester, Rome and Tromsø.

Our thriving community of energetic postgraduate researchers both benefits greatly from this research environment and makes an in important active contribution to it. For example, they recently organised and hosted the British Postgraduate Philosophy Association Masterclass on Alain Badiou’s philosophy.

Our research interests

  • Aesthetics
  • Philosophy of action
  • Anscombe, Foot, Midgley and Murdoch
  • Death and Meaning
  • Enhancement and transhumanism
  • Environmental philosophy
  • Ethics, including bioethics
  • Feminist philosophy
  • Indian philosophy
  • Philosophy of language
  • Philosophy of literature
  • Metaphysics
  • Philosophy of mind
  • Plotinus
  • Political philosophy
  • Philosophy of religion
  • The self
  • Philosophy of time and space.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MPhil
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

PG Recruitment