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Manchester Centre for Political Theory (MANCEPT)

MANCEPT provides an active forum for education, and research in political theory and philosophy, building on a long tradition of international excellence in political theory.

MANCEPT is one of the largest and strongest groupings in analytical political theory in the UK.


Its core membership includes all members of staff currently teaching and researching in aspects of political theory, and all graduate students working on doctoral dissertations in political theory and philosophy. The Centre also engages with numerous scholars with cognate interests from other parts of the University.

Members' research interests range over philosophical, normative, positive and historical aspects of political theory.

MANCEPT organises a seminar series, as well as fostering discussion on particular topics through specialised workshops, reading groups and seminars and one-day conferences involving MANCEPT members and visiting speakers such as Peter Vallentyne (Missouri-Columbia), Russell Hardin (NYU), Geoffrey Brennan (ANU), Jeff McMahan (Rutgers), Stephen Darwell (Michigan) and Joseph Raz (Oxford and Columbia).  

MANCEPT members are also active in organising occasional conferences – such as the 2007 conference on 'Disability and Disadvantage' involving (among others)  Dan Brock (Harvard),  Leslie Francis (Utah), and Douglas MacLean (UNC)  and supported by an AHRC award, and the 2008 annual conference of the Society for Applied Philosophy involving (among others) C.A.J. Coady (Melbourne), George Sher (Rice), Jerry Gaus (Arizona), and Richard Dagger (Arizona).

Staff and postgraduate research is disseminated through the MANCEPT working papers series and members of MANCEPT are active is presenting their work at seminars and conferences nationally and internationally, as well as through publication. MANCEPT also encourages the work of graduate students, for example by sponsoring an annual international postgraduate conference - Brave New World.