Leadership of the Philosophical Gourmet Report

Some readers have recently asked questions about who is “really” running the Philosophical Gourmet Report (PGR), a ranking of the reputations of some doctoral programs in philosophy.

As was reported last October, PGR founder and editor Brian Leiter (Chicago) was to co-edit the 2014-15 edition of the PGR with his chosen successor, Berit Brogaard (Miami), and then step down from the editorship and join the PGR’s advisory board. At the time, Leiter wrote, “After 2014, Berit will have ultimate decision-making authority over the PGR.”

The 2014-15 edition of the PGR was published last December, so it would reasonable to expect that this transition has occurred. Recent posts at Leiter’s blog, Leiter Reports, such as “Fall 2015 Update to the PGR” and “An Inconclusive PGR Update,” had given some readers the impression that Leiter is still running the show. A cursory search of posts at Leiter Reports did not yield any clear announcement that Leiter is no longer in charge of the PGR or that Brogaard is currently the only editor of the PGR, nor any delineation of the powers associated with Leiter’s current and future position at the PGR.

Correspondence with a member of the advisory board yielded some clarification. I quote, with permission:

There was some confusion recently about Brian Leiter’s status with respect to the PGR after he posted a “Fall 2015 Update to the PGR” to his blog.  However, Brian has confirmed to members of the PGR advisory board that as specified in last year’s agreement with the board, he has completely stepped down as editor of the PGR, and Berit Brogaard is in full control.  He has changed the title of the blog post to “Fall 2015 faculty moves since the last PGR” to avoid confusion.  The former advisory board has now been dissolved.  As things stand, Berit is the only person with an official role in the PGR.  She will be appointing a transition committee to determine the future of the PGR.

Berit Brogaard has also confirmed with me that she is currently the sole editor of the PGR, though she is looking for a co-editor,  and that there currently is no PGR advisory board. Additionally, in a message posted at Leiter Reports, she says that she has ” invited all members of the 2014-15 Advisory Board to continue to serve as  Nominating Editors, on the model of Philosopher’s Annual: i.e., they will nominate evaluators.  With a new co-editor, I will constitute a new Advisory Board to work on future reports, though I expect we will invite some of those from Brian’s Advisory Board given how much experience and knowledge is represented there.”

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