Harvey Lederman


I'm currently a Bersoff Assistant Professor / Faculty Fellow in the department of philosophy at NYU. Starting in the Fall of 2016 I'll be an Assistant Professor in the department of philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh. You can view my CV here.

My main recent work has been on the notion of common knowledge. Some people commonly know a proposition just in case they all know it, they all know that they all know it, and so on. The notion of common knowledge has been widely used in economics, linguistics and philosophy. I have argued that common knowledge is not as important as many people have thought. The main paper to come out of this project is Uncommon Knowledge, in which I present an argument that people never have common knowledge at all.

I am now working on a range of projects at the intersection of epistemology and the philosophy of language. With Jeremy Goodman, I have been working on Frege's puzzle. With Daniel Rothschild, I have been working on how meaningful language affects strategic interactions.

I have recently completed a side-project, with Hilary Greaves, on the prospects for "extended preferences" as a foundation for interpersonal comparisons of well-being.

I have a longstanding interest in the history of philosophy: particularly in ancient Greek philosophy, and in Chinese philosophy. Before beginning to study philosophy, I was trained as a classicist and I am still working on a range of projects about Aristotle. I am also actively working on a large project about Ming Dynasty philosophy. The first component of this project is a paper on Wang Yangming's moral psychology. The second component is a translation and edition (with scholarly introduction) of the correspondence of Nie Bao and Wang Ji (coauthored with Ernest Brewster) .


Conference Proceedings:

Work in Progress:

      Common Knowledge:

      History of Philosophy:

      Philosophical Logic:


      Epistemic Logic:

Older Papers:

Thanks to Volker Schlue for the photo and Peter Fritz for sharing his style sheet.