Dr Michelle Ciurria

School of Humanities & Languages


Kensington Campus
Fields: Applied Ethics (incl. Bioethics and Environmental, Feminist Theory, Philosophical Psychology (incl. Moral Psychology and Philosophy of Action)


Michelle Ciurria is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of New South Wales’ Practical Justice Initiative. Prior to this appointment, she held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology Program at Washington University in St. Louis, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. She received her Ph.D. from York University in 2014. Her research is published in such journals as the Journal of the American Philosophical Association, Philosophical Psychology, Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, and Feminist Philosophy Quarterly.

Dr. Ciurria is a specialist in responsibility theory, applied ethics, moral psychology, and feminist philosophy, with interests in feminist social epistemology, argumentation theory, and philosophy of psychiatry and psychology.

Her current research project, which she calls ‘extended responsibility,’ aims to provide a robust, interdisciplinary, and ecologically valid model of responsibility, which draws on converging research across multiple fields. This differs from the classic approach, which was primarily concerned to define the internal constituents of responsibility. Recent research across multiple fields suggests that this methodological approach is flawed because human capacities and traits are, in fact, dependent upon, covariant with, or constituted by external factors.

Dr. Ciurria’s project in extended responsibility aims to draw on contemporary research to develop a superior model. It explores six key dimensions of responsibility: (1) the interpersonal, (2) the neurobiological (focusing on extended cognition), (3) the social-psychological, (4) the collective (focusing on collective agency), (5) the epistemological, and (6) the political. This integrative approach accomplishes three things: (1) it corrects a methodological (individualist) bias in the scholarly literature on responsibility, (2) it integrates connected strains of thought across what might at first seem to be disparate research projects, and (3) it provides a robust, evidence-based model of responsibility that can be used effectively by policy-makers to enhance the collective uptake of responsible agency.





Michelle Ciurria’s main research interests are in ethics, moral psychology, feminist philosophy, philosophy of psychiatry, and argumentation theory. She is currently writing a book on moral responsibility as a dialogical, reason-giving, and teleological process. This project aims to give a psychology adequate and epistemologically tractable method of attributing responsibility. More recently, she began researching the intersection of responsibility, egalitarianism, and climate justice.

Prior to this position, she held a postdoctoral fellowship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), affiliated with the Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology Program at Washington University in St. Louis.


Dr. Ciurria has taught in a variery of settings, including York University in Toronto, The University of Missouri - St. Louis, and Washington University in St. Louis. She has published articles on the teaching profession in such journals as 'Teaching Ethics' and 'The Journal of Moral Education,' and she is on the editorial board for 'Teaching Ethics.' She is committed to teaching and mentoring students from diverse demographic backgrounds, as reflected in her work on the importance of collaborative reasoning and diversity in the production of objection knowledge (forthcomin in 'Feminist Philosophy Quarterly').