2023 Lectures: Thomas Hurka

Knowledge and Achievement: Their Value, Nature, and Public Policy Role

We are delighted to announce that Professor Thomas Hurka's 2023 Annual Uehiro Lectures in Practical Ethics have now been rescheduled. The lecture series is entitled "Knowledge and Achievement: Their Value, Nature, and Public Policy Role".

Monday 4 March*, Wednesday 6 March and Friday 8 March 2024 (*with a drinks reception open to all attendees after the first lecture on Monday 4 March)

All three lectures will at held at 16:30 - 18:30, in the Lecture Theatre, H B Allen Centre, Keble College, 25 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 6NN. Further details are provided below.

All are welcome to attend these free, public lectures - we hope you will be able to join us!

Registration required.

About the Speaker

Photograph of Thomas Hurka

Professor Thomas Hurka is currently Chancellor Henry N. R. Jackman Distinguished Professor of Philosophical Studies at the University of Toronto. He gained a B.Phil. and D.Phil. in Philosophy at University of Oxford University, after a B.A. at the University of Toronto.

Hurka has published on a number of topics, however his main area of research and teaching is moral and political philosophy, especially normative ethical theory. His writings focus on perfectionist moral theories: authored books include Perfectionism (OUP)  and Virtue, Vice, and Value (OUP). He has also discussed the justification of punishment, population ethics, nationalism, friendship, and the morality of war. 

In 2011, Professor Hurka published a non-academic book The Best Things in Life (OUP), about the many things – pleasure, knowledge, achievement, virtue, personal love – that can make life desirable. Later, in 2014, he published British Ethical Theorists From Sidgwick to Ewing (OUP), the first full historical study of an important strand in the development of modern moral philosophy. The book follows a series of British ethical theorists from the late nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century, who shared key assumptions that made them a unified and distinctive school.


Lecture 1: Knowledge and Achievement as Organic Goods | Monday 4 March 2024, 16:30 - 18:30 (followed by a drinks reception for all attendees)


Lecture 2: Degrees of Value in Knowledge and Achievement | Wednesday 6 March 2024, 16:30 - 18:30


Lecture 3: Knowledge and Achievement as Public Policy Goals | Friday 8 March 2024, 16:30 - 18:30



H B Allen Centre Lecture Theatre, Keble College, 25 Banbury Rd, Oxford OX2 6NN


Registration for in-person attendance is now open on Bookwhen. Please note that seats are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Since there is no charge for the event, not all registered participants attend. To compensate for this, we operate a policy of overbooking so please arrive early in order to guarantee your seat.



We aim to release video recordings of all three lectures as soon as we can once the series has concluded.

Details of Professor Hurka's book for the Series will follow in due course.

Link to the Uehiro Series in Practical Ethics on the OUP website: http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/category/academic/series/philosophy/uspe.do