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Kirk Surgener


I am the Director of Student Experience and Progression for the PPE programme at Warwick.

I received my PhD from the University of Birmingham working with Prof. Alex Miller on the metaethics of constructivism, with particular attention on the work of Christine Korsgaard. I argued that, although thinking about constructivism illuminates a lot of interesting issues, ultimately the position cannot sustain the grandiose claims made of it.

Research interests

I am interested in pretty much all normative matters at all levels: political, moral, legal as well as metaethical questions and issues in the philosophy of language. Flowing out of my thesis I have done work on the Frege-Geach problem, the best way to construe moral realism, and how to make a case for analytic naturalism about moral facts. Recently I've become interested in what our treatment of animals reveals about their moral status. I'm also developing a new way of understanding moral metaphysics by exploiting insights from the philosophy of science.


This year I will be teaching Principles of Political Economy: Philosophy and Economics; Feminism (Post-Graduate version) and convening Introduction to Philosophy.

Publications under review and in progress:

  • 'Against Ecumenicism' (with Alex Miller we show how hybrid-expressivism fails to solve the Frege-Geach Problem).

  • 'A New Solution to the Open Question Argument' (I borrow Gillian Russell's insights in philosophy of language to revamped versions of Moore's argument).

  • 'Moral Structuralism' (I suggest we can avoid certain sceptical problems about ethics by looking to the philosophy of science).


Kirk Surgener

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