Professor Robert Williams

Professor Robert Williams

Professor of Theoretical Philosophy

0113 343 3282

Summary: Philosophy of Logic and Language; Metaphysics; Formal epistemology.


Research Interests

  • Philosophy of logic and language
  • Metaphysics
  • Formal Epistemology

I am currently Principal Investigator for:

Recent externally funded research projects include:

  • Metaphysical Indeterminacy (2009-13, AHRC major research grant). 
  • The cognitive role of Indeterminacy (2009-11, British Academy Research Development Award).  


Selected Publications 

  • 'Non-classical minds and indeterminate survival', Philosophical Review (forthcoming)
  • 'Decision making under indeterminacy', Philosopher's Imprint (2014)
  • 'Counterfactual triviality', Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (2012).
  • 'Fundamental and derivative truths', Mind (2010).
  • 'Is supervaluational consequence logically revisionary?', Journal of Philosophy (2008).
  • 'Eligibility and Inscrutability', Philosophical Review (2007).

For more, see Robbie's personal webpage

PhD supervision.

I am currently particularly interested in supervising projects in the following two areas:

  • The nature of representation: the metaphysics, epistemology and explanatory role of mental and linguistic content.
  • Living in a non-classical world: epistemology and practical reasoning interacting with indeterminacy and nonclassical logic.

But I'm also willing to supervise in any of my areas of research interest. Please do drop me a line if you want to discuss potential PhD projects, for example in:

  • Conditionals: the logic, semantics and pragmatics of indicative and counterfactual conditionals.
  • Indeterminacy and vagueness.
  • Philosophy of mathematics
  • Probability: subjective and objective.
  • Personal identity
  • Logic: classical and non-classical; metaphysics, epistemology and normativity.
  • Ontological commitment: the relation between metaphysics and language.
  • Metasemantics: the foundations of reference and representation.

Completed supervision:

  • Stephan Kraemer. PhD 2011. "Second-Order Quantification and Ontological Commitment". (final year only). (Currently post-doctoral research associate, University of Hamburg. This thesis won the Wolfgang-Stegmüller-Preis)
  • Mirja Holst. PhD 2012. "Ordering semantics for incomplete descriptions". (2012: DAAD award at the University of Hamburg. Currently research associate at the University of Hamburg.)
  • Alex Oldemeier. PhD 2012. "The epistemology of abstraction" (AHRC award 2009-11. Jacobsen fellow 2011-12).
  • Thomas Brouwer. PhD 2013. "The metaphysical commitments of logic" (Jacobsen fellow 2012-13). 

Current supervision:

  • Laura Crosilla. 2012-- PhD on the philosophy of constructive mathematics.
  • Nick Tasker. 2013-- PhD on the nature of representation. 
  • Will Gamester 2013-- PhD on the nature of representation.