Olof Leffler

Olof Leffler

PhD Student


Summary: I work on metanormativity, in particular on metaethics and practical reason. My dissertation project concerns constitutivist approaches to explaining action and practical normativity.



My BA degrees - one in political science and one in philosophy (2012) - as well as my MA in philosophy (2014) are from University of Gothenburg, Sweden. They all passed with distinction. In October 2015, I started my PhD at Leeds. I will spend summer term 2017 at Humboldt University, Berlin.

Research Interests 

My main area of interest is metanormativity, as I primarily work in the intersection(s) between metaethics, normative ethics, and philosophy of action. But I also have interests in many related areas, not least in political philosophy, various topics in mind/metaphysics/epistemology, and in metaphilosophy.

By and large, you could describe what I do as theoretical practical philosophy. I am therefore affiliated with CEM.

Research Projects

My dissertation project is called The Constitution of Constitutivism. I discuss so-called constitutivist theories about practical normativity with respect to the way(s) they can explain action and normativity. 

My supervisors are Pekka Väyrynen and Ulrike Heuer


  • Leffler, Olof (2016). "The Foundations of Agency - and Ethics?", in Philosophia [further details not yet known].
  • Leffler, Olof (2016). "Om From Morality to the End of Reason av Ingmar Persson" ("On From Morality to the End of Reason by Ingmar Persson"), in Filosofisk Tidskrift, No. 1, pp. 60-62.
  • Leffler, Olof (2014). "Om rättfärdigandereflektion" ("On Justification by Reflection"), in Alarcon, Meri; Amundsen Bergström, Matilda; Kaveh, Tanja & Pettersen, Andrea Vilde (eds.) (2014). Meningens motstånd, Göteborgs universitet: Institutionen för litteratur, idéhistoria och religion, pp. 35-39.



  • Respondent to "Whom to Blame and Whom to Praise. A Cross-Cultural Pilot Study to Prove the Influence of Social Hierarchy for Attributions of Moral Evaluations" by Albert Newen (Bochum), at Social Norms and Obligations Workshop, University of Sheffield, 18/10/16. 
  • Presentation of "What We Learn from the Schmagency Objection" at WRPPF, York meeting, 18/6/16, and Understanding Value V, University of Sheffield, 29/07/16.
  • Respondent to "Macintyre, Moral Disagreements and Liberal Politics" by Ahmed Fattah (Sheffield) at WRPPF, Leeds meeting, 14/11/15.
  • Presentation of "Categorical Normativity and Bottom-Up Solutions" at Filosofidagarna (Swedish National Congress of Philosophy), Linköping, 13/06/15.


  • Presentation of "The Virtues of the Humean Theory of Motivation" at the Postgraduate Seminar, University of Leeds, 09/12/16.
  • Presentation of "What We Learn from the Schmagency Objection" at the Postgraduate Seminar, University of Leeds, 29/04/16. 
  • Respondent to "Moral Disagreement Despite Diversity" by Ragnar Francén Olinder (Gothenburg), at the Research seminar in practical philosophy and political theory, University of Gothenburg, 15/04/15.
  • Presentation of "Deliberative Indispensability Deliberately Dispensed With", at the Research seminar in practical philosophy and political theory, University of Gothenburg, 18/09/13.


At Gothenburg, I did quite a bit of mentoring of undergraduate students in the local mentoring program (which I also ran for quite some time), as well as a course on teaching in higher education (as part of my MA).

At Leeds, I have (so far) been tutoring on the following courses:

  • PHIL1120: Great Philosophical Thinkers
  • PHIL1080: The Good, the Bad, the Right, the Wrong
I have also been taking further courses on teaching in higher education along the way.


  • Feel free to check out my pages on academia.edu and philpapers.org.
  • I am grateful for being funded by a Leeds University 110th Anniversary Research Scholarship.
  • I have been doing som administrative work at Gothenburg and Leeds. Currently, and arguably most importantly, I am (among other things) co-organising the next round of Understanding Value (at Sheffield), as a Leeds representative, and organising the local postgraduate philosophy seminar at Leeds (together with David Heering).
  • At present, my main outlet for outreach activities is the Network for Evidence-Based Policy (note: page in Swedish).
  • Also, feel free to contact me if you have any further questions.