Discover how philosophy shapes our modern world with ‘Philosophy Today’, The Department of Philosophy's annual public lecture series. Over six engaging lectures, Trinity College Dublin's distinguished philosophers discuss their current research and reveal its practical applications.

2025 Series

Curious about what's in store for 2025? Sign up to our mailing list and be the first to receive all the latest news and early announcements.

Subscribe to mailing list

2024 Round-Up

The Philosophy Today public lecture series 2024 concluded on April 18th with an engaging presentation on the essence of wisdom by Professor Paul O’Grady.

Over twelve weeks, the JM Synge Theatre in The Arts Building hosted a fascinating array of diverse talks every second Thursday on topics ranging from transformative experience and modality to meaningful work, perception, and the ethics of AI.   

Details of the 2024 line-up can be viewed below. 

Thursday, 8th February 2024 | Dr Farbod Akhlaghi

‘Changing Partners: Should You Stop Your Beloved from Changing Who They Are?'

Is it wrong to stop your spouse from taking a job in a different country? Your child from going to university? Your sibling from getting married? Farbod Akhlaghi works on the ethics of transformative experience – experiences which change who we are, and which remain unknowable until we personally encounter them.


Thursday, 22nd February 2024 | Professor John Divers

'Caring About What Would Have Been'

Ever wondered how your everyday "what if" statements hold the key to unlocking insights about our world? John Divers works on modality – what we say (and think) that goes beyond how the world actually is and speaks of how the world could have been, could not have been, would have been or would not have been.


Thursday, 7th March 2024 | Dr Caleb Althorpe

'Making Work Meaningful'

What exactly makes work ‘meaningful’? Is it just whatever the worker feels is meaningful? Or is it work that has certain features, such as being complex, or giving the worker a say in how it is carried out? Caleb Althorpe does research in political philosophy and political theory, examining normative questions that fall at the intersection of philosophy, politics, and economics.


Thursday, 21st March 2024 | Dr Emma Otterski

'Decoding Perception: Power, Status, & How We See Others'

Have you ever considered how we truly understand the people we interact with every day? What subtle signals do we rely on to interpret their thoughts and feelings, and how much does our understanding of them depend on the world around us? Emma Otterski works on social cognition – how to explain our (mis)understanding of others.


Thursday, 4th April 2024 | Dr William Ratoff

'How Should We Negotiate the Creation of Artificial General Intelligence?'

Artificial Intelligence is poised to revolutionize our lives. From self-driving cars to companion-bots, no aspect of our world, we envisage, will be quite the same again. How should we negotiate the creation of artificial general intelligence? Is the creation of such A.I. even desirable? Does it pose an existential risk to humanity? William Ratoff works on moral philosophy, especially topics in the ethics of artificial intelligence and new technologies.


Thursday, 18th April 2024 | Professor Paul O'Grady

'What Is Wisdom?'

Everyone thinks wisdom is a good thing to have, but it’s less than clear what it is, and it has puzzling features. It seems to be connected to living well but is frequently achieved through suffering. Paul O’Grady works in theory of knowledge and philosophy of religion. In this lecture he will explore what wisdom might be, using resources from psychology, history of philosophy and recent epistemology.