Pickup Wins Sanders 2020 Metaphysics Award


Martin Pickup, Turpin Junior Research Fellow at Oriel College, Oxford, is the winner of the 2020 Metaphysics Prize from the Marc Sanders Foundation.

Dr. Pickup won for his essay, “The Situationist Account of Change“. Here’s the abstract:

In this paper I propose a new solution to the problem of change: situationalism. According to this view, parts of reality fundamentally disagree about what is the case and reality as a whole is unsettled (i.e. metaphysically indeterminate). When something changes, parts of the world irreconcilably disagree about what properties it has. From this irreconcilable disagreement, indeterminacy arises. I develop this picture using situations, which are parts of possible worlds; this gives it the name situationalism. It allows a B-theory endurance view on which there is genuine incompatibility when things change. There are costs to the view, which are explored, but it is a novel approach which offers a distinct explanation of what happens when things exist through change. 

The Sanders Metaphysics Prize is awarded every other year. It includes $5,000 and publication of the winning essay in Oxford Studies in Metaphysics.

Honorable mention for the prize went to Han Sungil, associate professor of philosophy at Seoul National University, for his paper, “Essence and Thisness.”

The prize contest is administered by Dean Zimmerman, Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University. You can learn more about the prize and see a list of previous winners here.


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