Mr Chris Lyon

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Overview

The working title of my thesis is Exploring a relational approach to social justice: liberals, radicals, and Brazil's 'new social contract'. The research is in social justice theory, assessing radical critiques of the liberal social contract tradition in political philosophy and making a case for the alternative 'relational' approach that they point to. As well as theoretical analysis, the argument draws on the particular context of the recent history of Brazil since re-democratisation in the late 1980s, an episode commonly narrated as a case of a 'new social contract'. This aspect gains further insight from fieldwork relating to new participatory-democratic experiments in Brazil's social assistance sector.

In general I am interested in political philosophy and critical theories of social justice, and the interface between such normative fields and more practical areas of development studies and public policy, in which normative and philosophical questions are salient but often unacknowledged. Theoretically my interests lie in theories of social justice and related questions of social ontology and structure/agency. More practically I am interested in social protection policy and in institutional experiments in democratisation, as well as the country-specific case of Brazil.

I have been course tutor on the GDI masters modules 'Development as Historical Change' and 'Global Inequalities and Social Development'.

I am also currently Editorial Assistant for the forthcoming Oxford University Press Oxford Handbook of the Brazilian Economy.

Email: chris.lyon@manchester.ac.uk

Areas of expertise