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Andrei Bespalov

I am a WIRL COFUND Fellow in the Institute of Advanced Study and the Department of Philosophy at the University of Warwick.

I hold a PhD in political science from Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona, 2019). In my dissertation I have offered three principled reasons why religious exemptions from generally applicable laws are not publicly justifiable in a liberal democratic society. I also hold a Candidate of Philosophical Sciences degree in social philosophy from Lomonosov Moscow State University (2004), where I taught from 2004 till 2015.


My current research in political philosophy focuses on theories of public reason. The project that I am working on at Warwick is titled Sceptical Liberalism: Maintaining Public Reason in the Age of Disagreement. My aim is to find the least morally and metaphysically demanding answer to the basic question of political liberalism: How is it possible for free and equal individuals to form a stable political society under the conditions of deep disagreement between them? To this end, I suggest a number of sceptical amendments to John Rawls’s conception of political liberalism. In particular, I redefine public reason in fallibilistic terms, which leads me to a liberal conception of political society that is more agonistic and yet more accommodating to pluralism about justice than the standard Rawlsian view.

 Recent publications

Against Public Reason's Alleged Self-Defeat. Law and Philosophy. Forthcoming. OPEN ACCESS

Religious Exemptions, Claims of Conscience, and Idola Fori. Jurisprudence 11 (2): 225-42, 2020.

Religious Faith and the Fallibility of Public Reasons. Oxford Journal of Law and Religion 8 (2): 223–46, 2019.

Should Abraham Get a Religious Exemption? Res Publica 25 (2): 235–59, 2019.

 My webpages