Dr VY Allison-Bolger

Dr John Appleby

Dr Reuven Brandt

VY Allison-Bolger

A psychiatrist by training I got my PhD in Philosophy from Lancaster in 2015 having been supervised by Rachel Cooper and Brian Garvey.

My thesis was “Why are some delusions incorrigible?”. Using the methods of ordinary language philosophy and Wittgenstein (OLPW) I identified incorrigible delusions as a class of claims which patients insist are true because they are statements about real events. I went on to show the logic patients use to defend these beliefs in the face of counter argument.

My longstanding interest is in psychopathology of psychosis and applying methods of OLPW to what people with psychosis say. Two strands follow from this – a more nuanced understanding of the experience of psychosis, and different approaches to classification of psychoses.

I am working on a paper on psychoses as a diagnostic category, and on cultural implications for diagnosis of delusions. Currently I am working on a textbook of psychopathology informed by these ideas. The working title is “Describing Psychosis”.

Contact VY Allison-Bolger through Rachel Cooper (

John Appleby

I work on theoretical and applied issues in moral and political philosophy. The majority of my work is applied to issues (e.g. ethics, policy and regulation) in science and medicine, especially reproduction (e.g. the ethics of the donation of reproductive materials). I am currently conducting research on a number of topics in the field of reproduction / reproductive donation, including: gamete and embryo donation; mitochondrial replacement techniques / mitochondrial donation (aka ‘three person IVF’); artificial gametes/in-vitro derived gametes; and ectogenesis. In addition, I am researching the ethics of organoids, biofabrication and gene editing technologies (e.g. CRISPR).

Some of the philosophical concepts and themes I am exploring both on their own and in relation to the above topics, include: trust, hope, privacy, identity, the nature of children’s welfare, the value/significance of genetic relatedness; the value/significance of genetic information and the regulation of ‘radically’ new biotechnologies.

For an up to date list of my publications please see my university webpage:

Reuven Brandt

Dr. Reuven Brandt earned his PhD in philosophy at The University of Western Ontario, Canada, in 2015. He then took up a post-doctoral position at Lancaster University, examining ethical and legal questions pertaining to assisted reproduction. Reuven is currently as Assistant Professor at the University of California, San Diego where his research focuses on reproductive ethics, with a particular interest in the acquisition and distribution of rights and responsibility in complex reproductive arrangements. His current primary project is to develop a unified account of the ways different kinds of involvement in reproduction result in different obligations to offspring. He is also interested in ethical questions pertaining to the development and regulation of reproductive technologies.