Hilary Greaves' home page

[Picture unavailable] Contact information

I am a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford, and a Tutorial Fellow at Somerville College, Oxford.

My current research focusses on various issues in ethics. My interests include: foundational issues in consequentialism ('global' and 'two-level' forms of consequentialism), issues of aggregation (utilitarianism, prioritarianism, egalitarianism and anti-aggregationist approaches), population ethics, effective altruism, the interface between ethics and economics, the analogies between ethics and epistemology, and formal epistemology.

I currently (2014-17) direct the project Population Ethics: Theory and Practice, based at the Future of Humanity Institute, and funded by The Leverhulme Trust.

Contact information

Email: hilary dot greaves at philosophy dot ox dot ac dot uk.
Mailing address:Somerville College, Oxford OX2 6HD, UK

Email is the quickest and most reliable way to reach me.



  • 'Cluelessness'. Under review. Draft Audio podcast of associated talk Slides for this talk
  • 'Moral uncertainty about population ethics.' With Toby Ord. Under review. Draft
  • 'Population axiology' (introductory survey article). Commissioned by and currently under review at Philosophy Compass. Draft (There is also a longer version available here, containing additional material that some may find useful, but that overran the Philosophy Compass word limit.)
  • 'Discounting and public policy: A survey'. Conditionally accepted at Economics and Philosophy. Draft
  • 'Extended preferences'. With Harvey Lederman. Forthcoming in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. Preprint
  • 'Aggregating extended preferences.' With Harvey Lederman. Forthcoming in Philosophical Studies. Preprint
  • 'A reconsideration of the Harsanyi-Sen-Weymark debate on utilitarianism.' Forthcoming in Utilitas. Preprint
  • 'Antiprioritarianism'. Utilitas 27(1), 1-42. Preprint
  • 'On the CPT theorem'. With Teruji Thomas. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 45:46-65, 2014.Preprint
  • 'Epistemic decision theory'. Mind 122 (488): 915-952, 2013.Online publication Preprint
  • 'Empirical consequences of symmetries'. With David Wallace. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 65(1): 59-89, 2014. Preprint
  • 'In search of spacetime structuralism'. Philosophical Perspectives 25(1): 189-204, December 2011. Preprint
  • 'Towards a geometrical understanding of the CPT theorem' (2010). British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (2010) 61 (1): 27-50. Preprint
  • 'Time reversal in classical electromagnetism' (2009). With Frank Arntzenius. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (2009) 60 (3): 557-584. Preprint
  • 'On the Everettian epistemic problem' (March 2007). Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38(1), March 2007, pp.120-152. Preprint
  • 'Probability in the Everett interpretation' (January 2007). Philosophy Compass 2(1), 109-128. Preprint
  • 'Justifying conditionalization: Conditionalization maximizes expected epistemic utility' (July 2006). With David Wallace. Mind 115(459):607-632, July 2006. Preprint
  • 'Understanding Deutsch's probability in a deterministic multiverse' (September 2004). Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 35(3), September 2004, pp.423-456. Preprint

    Chapters in edited collections

  • 'Discounting future health'. To appear in Norheim, Emanuel, Jamison, Johansson, Millum, Otterson, Ruger and Verguet (eds.), Global health priority-setting: Cost-effectiveness and beyond. Forthcoming with OUP. Draft
  • 'Global consequentialism and the ethics of war'. To appear in Kuosmanen, McDermott and Roser (eds), Human rights and 21st century challenges, forthcoming with OUP. Draft
  • 'Against 'the badness of death'.' To appear in Gamlund and Solberg (eds.), Saving lives from the badness of death, forthcoming with OUP. Draft
  • 'The social disvalue of premature deaths'. In Weighing and reasoning: Themes from the philosophy of John Broome, Oxford University Press, 2015. Preprint
  • 'Everett and Evidence'. With Wayne Myrvold. In Many Worlds? Everett, Quantum Theory, & Reality, ed. Saunders, Barrett, Kent and Wallace, Oxford University Press (2010). Preprint


    The following are materials from talks I have given that have not been written up in paper form, i.e. the slides/handout notes/etc. below are the most detailed form in which this material exists.

  • 'Primitivist prioritarianism', presented at a workshop on The Value Of Equality, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 16 June 2016. Slides
  • 'Existential risk and population ethics', presented at CSER, Cambridge, 10 June 2016. Slides
  • 'Saving parrots and cancer care', presented in St Andrews, 30 March 2016. Video podcast available from this page Slides
  • 'Comparing existence and nonexistence', presented in Sydney, 12 August 2015. Slides
  • 'Doublethink in global prioritisation', presented in Auckland, 11 July 2015. Slides
  • '"Overlapping consensus" on deaths early in life', presented in Oslo, 21 June 2015. Slides
  • 'Arguing for population reduction: Case study: Climate change', presented in Oxford, 29 November 2014. Slides Podcast available from this page
  • 'The tradeoff problem and two-level epistemic consequentialism', presented at LSE, 21 November 2014. Handout
  • 'Interpersonal utility comparisons: Evaluative or descriptive?', presented in Oxford, 14 March 2014. Handout

    Works in progress

    I don't yet have a publicly 'shareable' draft of any of the following, but if you're interested, please let me know by email, and I'll send you a draft as soon as it is available.

  • 'Comparing existence and non-existence'. With John Cusbert.


    This section of my website archives teaching materials from my past courses, largely for the benefit of any interested parties who were not students on those courses.

    Graduate teaching: Seminar handouts

  • Seminar on Philosophical Foundations of Effective Altruism, Spring 2016 (Michigan): complete set of handouts
  • Seminar on Population Ethics, Trinity Term 2015: handouts on
    Person-affecting theories, part I;
    Comparing existence and non-existence;
    Person-affecting theories, part II.
  • Seminar on Value Theory, Hilary Term 2014: handouts on
    Prioritarianism ;
    Interpersonal utility comparisons;
    'Do the numbers count';
    Fitting-attitude theories of value

    Undergraduate teaching: Lecture notes/slides/handouts

  • Moral philosophy, first year undergraduate lectures, Michaelmas Term 2013
  • Epistemology, second year undergraduate lectures, Hilary Term 2013
  • Intermediate philosophy of physics: Special Relativity (handouts only, full course), second year undergraduate lectures, Hilary Term 2011
  • Frege and Russell, second/third year undergraduate lectures, Michaelmas Term 2010
  • Intermediate philosophy of physics: Special Relativity (full lecture notes for second half of course only), second year undergraduate lectures, Hilary Term 2010

    Undergraduate reading lists (for Oxford Prelims and Finals papers in Philosophy)

  • General Philosophy
  • FHS 102: Knowledge and Reality
  • FHS 103: Ethics
  • FHS 117: Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein
  • FHS 120: Intermediate Philosophy of Physics: Philosophy of Special Relativity
  • FHS 120: Intermediate Philosophy of Physics: Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics
  • FHS 124: Philosophy of Science
  • FHS 128: The philosophy and economics of the environment

    Last updated: 20 July 2016