My main research interests are in ethics. I focus on two questions.
- When is one state of the world better than another?
- What ought we to do?
I am especially interested in how these relate to uncertainty. This includes uncertainty about the future; uncertainty about the beliefs and actions of other people; and uncertainty about what is good for us.
In one sense, these are the most important questions there are, in any discipline. They deserve the most powerful tools available to answer them. Many of these come from areas of philosophy like decision theory, formal epistemology, and philosophy of probability, and such disciplines as computer science, economics, and mathematics. My work draws heavily on these resources. I enjoy collaborating with people who are experts in the areas, and supervising students interested in them.
My current projects relate to the first question, under the assumption that what ultimately matters is how well people’s lives (or those of sentient beings) go. They have led to other projects in epistemology and philosophy of probability. But in one way or another, these all connect with utilitarianism.