School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences Philosophy


Epistemology @ Edinburgh


Portrait of a female scholarEpistemology is one of the central areas of philosophy and also one of the most exciting in terms of the contemporary philosophical landscape. The University of Edinburgh has a unique wealth of research talent in this area and as a result epistemology is one of its core research 'clusters' which represent its research strengths. In the latest international rankings for graduate programmes in philosophy, Edinburgh is ranked joint 4th in the world for epistemology, putting us on a par with Princeton and Yale, and ahead of such distinguished departments of philosophy as Harvard and MIT. Indeed, outside of the US, only Oxford is ranked higher. The faculty members of the epistemology cluster are interested in such epistemological issues as scepticism (including its history), epistemic value, contextualism, social epistemology, epistemic responsibility, perceptual knowledge, rationality, the nature of cognitive processes, and virtue epistemology. The epistemology research cluster at Edinburgh regularly hosts research events in this area (including international conferences, workshops, a regular seminar series, and reading groups) as well as visiting scholars. It is also home to a number of funded research projects, hosted by the Eidyn Research Centre

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Research questions

Here are some research issues that are of particular interest to those working in epistemology at the University of Edinburgh:

  • Why, if at all, are epistemic standings valuable?
  • What constitutes a cognitive process?
  • How should one best understand, and respond to, the problem of scepticism?
  • How should one understand the notion of an epistemic virtue and what role, if any, does it play in a theory of knowledge?
  • What, if anything, ought I to believe?


The core members of faculty who work in epistemology are listed in the Members section below with links to their profile pages.

Other members of faculty interested in epistemology include: Dr Alasdair Richmond (early modern epistemology), Prof Mike Ridge (epistemic value), Prof Dory Scaltsas (ancient epistemology), and Dr Anders Schoubye (formal epistemology).