Research

Articles

"COVID-19 and the Paradox of Scientific Advice," Perspectives on Politics, online first, 2021.

"What Follows from the Problem of Ignorance?" Critical Review, online first, 2021.

"Risk and Fear: Restricting Science under Uncertainty," Journal of Applied Philosophy, online first, 2020.

“The People vs. the Experts: A Productive Struggle?” in the Critical Exchange “Beyond Populism and Technocracy,” Contemporary Political Theory, 2020.

"Justifying Public Funding for Science" British Journal of Political Science, 2019.               

Winner of the British Academy Brian Barry Prize for Excellence in Political Science, 2018

 

Book 

Politics and Expertise: How to Use Science in a Democratic Society, Princeton University Press (forthcoming)

This book examines the role of experts in democracies, with a focus on issues that involve the translation and use of science in political decisions. Conventional accounts of the relationship between expertise and politics have assumed the validity of a Weberian division of labor, where experts provide an assessment of the facts, while citizens and their representatives supply the values necessary for political judgment. I challenge this model on the grounds that it presupposes an idealized view of expertise as certain, objective, and value-free. I argue that the recognition of the ways in which expertise is incomplete, uncertain, contested or biased should alter decision-making practices and institutions that rely on expertise.

The book thus develops a model for the use of expertise in politics that is rooted in the ways in which both the available knowledge and the political context of its use are imperfect. I trace the implications of this approach for striking the proper balance between scientific and political authority, as well as for determining the decision procedures, evidentiary standards, funding strategies, and institutional spaces appropriate in different decision contexts.