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Matthew Heeney

Title | Organization: 
Graduate Student | Ph.D. program in Philosophy
Student Year: 
7th Year Ph.D. Student (Dissertation Phase)

I research the philosophy of action. In addition to action theory, my work draws on the philosophy of mind, epistemology, and ethics. I am especially interested in the interconnections between inferring (reasoning to a conclusion) and intentionally acting. This is a theme of my dissertation, Agency and the Attitudes: Responsibility Through Reasoning. I argue in the dissertation that responsibility for the attitudes of belief and intention is grounded in a thinker’s inferring to a conclusion, which is (I argue) a fully intentional manifestation of rational agency.

A second line of inquiry concerns rational agency in its diachronic dimension. How do we exercise autonomy over time by forming and executing intentions to act? What is the relationship between intention and intention-executing action? I am interested in how the phenomenon of inferring can shed light on these questions about diachronic rational agency.

Areas of Specialization: 

Philosophy of action, ethics, philosophy of mind