Dr David Liggins

Senior Lecturer in Philosophy

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Research interests

The philosophy of mathematics was the subject of my Ph.D. thesis and remains a major research interest of mine. In particular, I have defended nominalist accounts of mathematics: those which do not posit mathematical objects such as numbers or sets. Other ontological debates also interest me, particularly those concerning possible worlds, composite objects, and propositions. I have tended to explore theories which posit less rather than more, which has led me to think about paraphrase, pretence, fictionalism, and error theory. At present I am trying to bring some of these ideas into discussions of truth.

Philosophical method is a related interest. In particular, I am interested in how, if at all, our philosophical theories should be moulded by our pre-theoretical beliefs and by our best theories in mathematics, natural science, and linguistics. I am working on these questions in collaboration with my colleague Chris Daly.

I am also interested in grounding. Investigating grounding will help us to work out whether there are mathematical objects or analytic truths – at least, I hope it will.

Other research interests concern metaontology and metaethics.

Other research


Links to published versions (PhilPapers)

Penultimate drafts of many of my papers are available on PhilPapers. If you have trouble getting hold of any of my papers, just email me.


Research and projects

No current projects are available for public display