Dr David Bain

  • Reader (Philosophy)

Research interests

I am currently Principal Investigator (jointly with Michael Brady of the Value of Suffering Project (VOS), funded by a £362,000 grant from the John Templeton Foundation. The VOS project is a large, international, and interdisciplinary research project investigating the nature, role, and value of pain, suffering, and affective experience more generally. Its core team comprises philosophers, neuroscientists, psychologists, and clinicians, based in Scotland, France, Norway, and the United States. It includes a postdoctoral fellow and an international PhD student. Running from 2013 - 2016, the project will involve numerous workshops and conferences and will result in articles, a monograph, edited collections, and various outreach activities. 

Before the VOS project, I was during 2012-13 Principal Investigator (jointly with Michael Brady of the Pain Project, funded by a £107,000 grant from the John Templeton Foundation. 

Interested in consciousness, perception, and particularly affective experience, my current work focuses on what I call pain’s “hedomotive character”: its unpleasantness, in virtue of which pain is bad, sometimes awful; and its motivational force, in virtue of which pain can be good, indeed life-saving. I am interested in the nature of these features and the relations between them.  Hedonic tone -- pleasure as well as pain -- and its normative and motivational significance interest me in other cases too, e.g. smell, taste, touch, and our emotional lives.

Other interests include perceptual 'revelation'; externalist psychosemantics for experience and thought; recognitional capacities; relations between the primary/secondary quality distinction and differences in how we experience such diverse features as colours, shapes, temperatures, and natural kinds; and, recently, the very ideas of perceptual content and phenomenal character.

For more, see my personal webpage.


Publications

List by: Type | Date

Grants

2013-16

£362,000. John Templeton Foundation. The Value of Suffering Project (Principal Investigator). The VOS project is a large, international, and interdisciplinary research project investigating the nature, role, and value of pain, suffering, and affective experience more generally. Its core team comprises philosophers, neuroscientists, psychologists, and clinicians, based in Scotland, France, Norway, and the United States. It includes a postdoctoral fellow and an international PhD student. Running from 2013 - 2016, the project will involve numerous workshops and conferences and will result in articles, a monograph, edited collections, and various outreach activities. 

2012-13

£107,000. John Templeton Foundation. The Pain Project (Principal Investigator). 


Supervision

I am or have been PhD supervisor (primary or secondary) for the following students:

  • Abraham Sapien-Cordoba
  • Sheena McAnualla
  • John Donaldson
  • Andrew MacGregor
  • Olivia Rute Monteiro
  • Umut Baysan
  • Srdjn Grbic
  • Graham Peebles
  • Stuart Crutchfield
  • David Uings

I have managed the following postdoctoral researchers:


Teaching

In addition to supervision, at doctoral, masters, and undergraduate level, I usually teach on the following courses:

  • MLitt 2.  Philosophy of Mind
  • MLitt 2.  Philosophy of Language
  • Senior Honours.  SH11. Externalism and Reference
  • Junior Honours.  JH7.  Philosophy of Mind
  • Junior Honours.  JH2.  Philosophy of Language (tutorials only)
  • Level 2.  2K.  Knowledge, Meaning, and Inference (tutorials only)
  • Level 1.  1K.  Knowledge and the World

For more information, see www.davidbain.org/teaching


Additional Information

A member of Glasgow's philosophy department, I taught previously at Oxford, Bristol, and Nottingham universities, after taking my BA and DPhil at Oxford, either side of an MA at Chapel Hill.  Interested in all aspects of philosophy, my research is mainly in philosophy of mind.

For more, please see my personal webpage.