Benjamin Davis


I’m a PhD student in the University of Leeds where I work under the supervision of Professor Helen Steward (primary) and Dr Tasia Scrutton (secondary). I am grateful for having been awarded the Leeds Doctoral Scholarship which funds my PhD studies.

Before coming to Leeds, I completed an MA in philosophy at UCL. I also recently completed an MPhil Stud at UCL where my thesis was supervised by Professor John Hyman and Professor Lucy O’Brien. My thesis assessed (or, in a sense, reassessed) the relationship between voluntariness and beliefs. It argued that a proper apprehension of the concept of voluntariness renders a strong iteration of doxastic voluntarism far less resistible, and far more appealing.

My PhD thesis continues and develops the work done in his MPhil. Aside from the philosophy of mind & action, and the ethics of belief, some of my other interests include the philosophy of psychiatry, emotion, and religion. 

Research interests

Another key interest of mine, which in a way, is a sub-interest of philosophy of religion, is the philosophy of Judaism. In February 2023, I was delighted to present some of my research (Ordinary Shame and Religious Shame) to the APJ meeting at the APA Central conference in Denver, USA. 

Selection of other presentations

Acceptane and Alienation: a note on doxastic agency as activity in being at the Postgraduate Session of the Joint Session of the Aristotelian Society and the Mind Association. Birckbeck, July 2023.

Knowledge, Belief, and Responsibility: A Maimonidean approach to being responsible for religious beliefs at the 14th annual conference of the British Society for the Philosophy of Religion. Oxford, September 2022.

Mortal Shame and Eternal Shame at the UCL Postgraduate Conference in Philosophy, September 2021.


  • UCL, MPhil Stud (pass with no corrections)
  • UCL, MA (distinction)
  • Leeds, BA (1st Class Hon)