Papers

Here are links to my published and working papers

Published Papers

“Parental Rights and the Importance of Being Parents”, Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, 22 (2), 2019.

Author’s version for download                 Link to published version

“Reply to Critics”, Law Ethics and Philosophy, 5 (2018), 210-230.

Link to open access published version

“Private School, College Admissions and the Value of Education”, forthcoming in Journal of Applied Philosophy, 35 (2), 2018.

Author’s version for download              Link to published version

“How Bad Can a Good Enough Parent Be?”, Canadian Journal of Philosophy, 46 (2), 2016

Author’s version for download               Link to published version

“Some Questions (and Answers) for Sufficientarians” in Fourie, C. and Rid, A. (ed.s) How Much Is Enough? Sufficiency and Thresholds in Health Care, Oxford University Press, 2016

Authors version for download              Link to published version

“From Rawlsian Autonomy to Sufficient Opportunity in Education”, Politics, Philosophy & Economics 14.1 (2015): 53-66. DOI: 10.1177/1470594X13505413

Author’s version for download           Link to published version

“The Prospects for Sufficientarianism”, Utilitas 24.1 (2012): 101-117

Author’s version for download              Link to published version

Book Reviews

“Review of Harry G. Frankfurt’s ‘On Inequality'”, Disputatio

Review of On Inequality

Working Papers

To Sufficiency and Beyond!

Abstract: in this paper I argue that upper-limit sufficientarianism suffers from a major problem stemming from its distinctive indifference to supra-threshold distributions. I argue that supra-threshold distributions must either be relevant justice or irrelevant to justice, but facing up to this distinction shows that upper-limit sufficientarian face a dilemma. Either supra-threshold distributions are relevant to justice, and the indifference to those distributions is incoherent or supra-threshold distributions are irrelevant to justice, and indifference to those distributions is trivial as it is not a matter of justice nor is it a contested claim.

Children as Public Goods at what cost

Abstract: In this paper I examine the most prominent position in the debate about justice in the costs of children: the public goods approach. According to the public goods approach, non-parents can be required to share the costs of children, perhaps through the machinations of the welfare state, because children are a special benefit to them: a public good. I will make two critical claims about this position. First, I will argue that that the position explicitly answers only one of the three questions central to an account of justice in the costs of children: the question of Who can be required to share the costs, and it therefore neglects the very important question of How Much those who can be required to share the cost can be required to share. This question of How Much is highly significant because the answer to it will determine how generous the welfare state can be, the main reason why we are even drawn to the question of justice in the costs of children in the first place. Second, I will argue that a deeper examination of the core commitments of the public goods approach severely constraints the costs that non-parents can be required to share, and therefore limits the extent of public support for parents to a level below what seems to be assumed by proponents of the argument and by much contemporary practice. In light of this, proponents of the public goods approach must find another argument to support further cost-sharing, or else significantly pare back their ambitions for the welfare state and cost sharing among parents and non-parents.

Fairness and UK University Admissions

Abstract: In this paper I aim to go some way to clarifying the demands of fairness as they apply to university admissions by searching for an account of fairness that is both i) philosophically defensible and ii) practically useful in this context. To this end, the paper is structured as follows. In Section One, I review two commonly used standards of fairness that have been applied to university admissions and find them wanting in terms of their philosophical defensibility. In Section Two, I draw on the philosophical literature on equality of opportunity and defend a particular conception of equality of opportunity, but show that it requires further refinement to be both philosophically defensible and practically useful. In Section Three, I draw out the implications of this refined account for university admissions and derive from it certain practical rules. Section Four concludes.

Parental Licensing: a qualified defence

Abstract: In spite of the uncontroversial nature of its aim, parental licensing proposals have met with significant criticism in both a principled and a pragmatic form. In this paper I will offer a rebuttal of these objections and defend parental licensing as, in principle, justifiable in order to reduce harm, while also raising a new pragmatic concern, which directs us to take into account the likely effects of parental licensing on the supply of prospective adoptive parents. I aim to motivate a re-examination of licensing.by showing that the principled objections fail.