Department of Philosophy

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Michael Hannon

Associate Professor, Faculty of Arts



I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Nottingham. Previously, I was Deputy Director of the Institute of Philosophy at the University of London. I received my PhD from the University of Cambridge in 2013, and I grew up in Toronto.

I am also a Visiting Research Fellow on the 'Knowledgeable Democracy' project in Amsterdam, as well as an Honorary Research Fellow at London's Institute of Philosophy. Further, I hold a British Academy Rising Star Award for a project on 'The Role of Truth in Politics' and I founded the Political Epistemology Network (

Teaching Summary

Knowledge and Justification

Knowledge, Ignorance, and Democracy

Research Summary

I work in epistemology, especially the social and political aspects of epistemology. I am primarily interested in the relationship between knowledge and practical life.

On the one hand, my work explores how the demands of practical life bear on issues in theoretical epistemology. In my book, What's the Point of Knowledge? (OUP 2019), I argue that reflecting on the social role of knowledge sheds light on many epistemological issues, including: the level of justification required for knowledge, the semantics of 'knows', and philosophical skepticism. This book also explores how our epistemic concepts, norms, and practices contribute to human survival, cooperation, and flourishing.

On the flip side, I apply the tools of theoretical epistemology to urgent issues in practical life. My next book, titled How Politics Makes Us Stupid, will bring insights from many areas of epistemology into contact with political issues like post-truth, fake news, and the epistemic requirements of democracy.

I also dabble in cognitive science, ethics, and philosophy of language.

Recent Publications

Department of Philosophy

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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