Political Theory Group

Researching political theory and philosophy

The LSE is a leading centre for the study of political theory and philosophy, constituting one of the UK's largest concentrations of researchers in this area and related fields. The Political Theory Group in the Department of Government maintains close relations with political theorists and philosophers in other parts of the School, for example in the Departments of Law, Philosophy, and International Relations.

The Group is characterised by a vibrant research culture, centred around an active doctoral programme and a highly regarded external speaker series. We provide a research-led teaching programme at the MSc level, which attracts students from many different parts of the world.


The group runs a regular Political Philosophy Research Seminar and Doctoral Workshop: Political Theory.

GV503 Political Philosophy Research Seminar

The Political Theory Group invites domestic and international guest speakers to present and discuss papers. The seminar is attended by staff members, and PhD students from the Department of Government, but it also has regular participants from other departments and universities. Visitors are welcome.

Programme 2017/18

All seminars take place Thursday 16:00-18:00 in building 32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Room 32L.LG.18 (Lower Ground Floor). They are typically followed by drinks. Everyone is invited.

Michaelmas Term

28 September
Tom Parr (Essex), ‘The Future of Unemployment’

12 October
Robbie Shilliam (QMUL), 'Race and Revolution at Bwa Kayiman'

26 October
Alasia Nuti (York), 'Emancipation through the unjust past'

9 November
Turku Isiksel (Columbia), 'A methodology of international political theory'

23 November
Adom Getachew (Chicago), 'From Principle to Right: Self-Determination in the Age of Decolonization.'

7 December
Serene Khader (Brooklyn College & CUNY), 'Decolonial Feminisms and Individualism'

Lent Term

11 January
Paul Sagar (KCL), 'Liberty, Non-domination, Markets'

25 January
Bernardo Zacka (Stanford & Cambridge), 'Street-Level Bureaucracy and Democratic Theory'

8 February
Lisa Herzog (Technical University Munich), 'Knowledge as basis for assigning responsibilities?'

22 February
Nadia Urbinati (Columbia), title tbc

8 March
Richard Bourke (QMUL), 'Political theory and the philosophy of history'

12-13 March
LSE Graduate Political Theory Conference, with keynotes from Clare Chambers and Eric Schliesser.

Summer Term

May 14: Brian Barry Memorial Lecture
Elizabeth Anderson (Michigan)

June 4-5
Conference on Injustice, Resistance, and Progress

The conference is co-sponsored by our department and the Jean Beer Blumenfeld Center for Ethics at Georgia State University.

The conference will include a total of 9 speakers, 5 of whom are invited (list below), and 4 of whom will be selected via CFP (to be sent out soon).

  • Simon Caney, Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick
  • Emanuela Ceva, Department of Political Science and Social Studies, University of Pavia, Italy
  • Derrick Darby, Department of Philosophy, University of Michigan, USA
  • Candice Delmas, Department of Philosophy and Department of Political Science, Northeastern University, USA
  • Clarissa Hayward, Department of Political Science and Department of Philosophy, Washington University, St. Louis, USA

Mailing List

To receive the latest information on our seminar and selected other political theory events please subscribe to our mailing list.

Email listserv@listserv.lse.ac.uk with this text in the body of your message (not the subject line):


for instance: SUBSCRIBE GOV-POTY-ANNOUNCE-L Edgar Example


And to unsubscribe:

Email listserv@listserv.lse.ac.uk from the email address you want to unsubscribe with this text in the body of your message (not the subject line):


Research areas

One of the Group's key assets is the breadth and diversity of interests and expertise, including:

  • Contemporary moral philosophy and political theory
  • History of political thought
  • Comparative political theory
  • Philosophy of social science
  • Rational and social choice theory