I joined Philosophy at Stirling in 2002 after completing my PhD - on the justification of property rights - at Cambridge. Before postgraduate research, I worked for a year on tax policy as a civil servant in HM Treasury. Please click on the 'Research' tab for details of recent publications and projects.
My research examines the nature and justification of rights and duties, and their role in shaping a democratic public sphere. I am especially interested in the comparative importance of different forms of right including human rights, natural rights, contractual rights, property rights, legal rights.
My recent book - Human Rights, Ownership, and the Individual (OUP, 2019) - examines the distinction between rights grounded primarily by what they do for the right-holder (e.g. our 'basic' human rights) and those grounded by what they do for the wider community independently of their benefits to the right-holder (e.g. most property rights and other useful created systems of rights). I start from a new account of the nature of rights as formally bringing together duty-bearer and right-holder first-personally. Work on this book was supported by a British Academy mid-career fellowship (2016-17). The book is available here: https://global.oup.com/academic/product/human-rights-ownership-and-the-individual-9780198793366. It has been reviewed in the following journals: Ethics; American Journal of Jurisprudence; Law and Philosophy; Journal of Moral Philosophy. A symposium on the book is available in the Journal of Applied Philosophy: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/toc/14685930/2022/39/2.
I am currently part of a project, Norms for the New Public Sphere, with Natalie Ashton (Stirling), Fabienne Peter (Warwick) and Jonathan Heawood (Senior Research Fellow), funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council from 2019-22. The project brings together academic philosophers with those working in media studies and media activists and professionals, in order to investigate the opportunities and challenges that new social media pose for the 'public sphere'. The project team will criticise and consider the norms that could underpin a media policy framework for the internet age. See https://newpublicsphere.stir.ac.uk/
Research Postgraduate Supervision: I am currently supervising PhDs on the nature of rights, on human rights and cultural heritage, and on trust and audit. I have supervised PhD theses on the nature of 'positive' or socio-economic rights, on well-being as a ground for justice, on the justice of market transactions, on the defensibility of democracy, on the responsibility of collective agents, on causation in morality and law, and on civil disobedience. I enjoy postgraduate supervision and my students have a strong record on the job market, and a strong record attracting AHRC and other awards. See http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~sasp/ for full details of the St Andrews - Stirling joint graduate programme.
Professional Activities: In addition to reviewing for journals, I was a member of the management committee of The Philosophical Quarterly from 2009-19. From 2015-17 I was a member of the executive committee of the Aristotelian Society. From 2007-14, I was a member of the AHRC peer review college. Since 2017 I have been a member of the Council of the Royal Institute of Philosophy. In 2021, I was appointed to the College of Experts for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/dcms-college-of-experts#contents.
In addition, I am external examiner for the undergraduate philosophy degree at King's College London, and have held similar roles at Cambridge and Glasgow.
Cruft R (2021) Legitimating Pandemic-Responsive Policy: Whose Voices Count When?. In: Niker F & Bhattacharya A (eds.) Political Philosophy in a Pandemic: Routes to a More Just Future. London: Bloomsbury Academic, pp. 109-122. https://www.bloomsburycollections.com/book/political-philosophy-in-a-pandemic-routes-to-a-more-just-future/
Ashton NA & Cruft R (2021) Rethinking the Post-Truth Polarisation Narrative: Social Roles and Hinge Commitments in the Plural Public Sphere. Political Quarterly, 92 (4), pp. 598-605. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-923x.13032
Cruft R (2019) Human Rights, Ownership, and the Individual. London: Oxford University Press. https://global.oup.com/academic/product/human-rights-ownership-and-the-individual-9780198793366?cc=gb&lang=en&
Cruft R (2019) How Fundamental is the Right to Freedom of Exchange?. In: Queralt J & van der Vossen B (eds.) Economic Liberties and Human Rights. Political Philosophy for the Real World. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 259-274. https://www.routledge.com/Economic-Liberties-and-Human-Rights-1st-Edition/Queralt-van-der-Vossen/p/book/9781138574397
Cruft R (2018) In What Sense Should Respect for Human Rights Be Attainable? A Response to Brownlee. In: Etinson A (ed.) Human Rights: Moral or Political?. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 327-336. https://global.oup.com/academic/product/human-rights-moral-or-political-9780198713258?cc=gb〈=en
Cruft R (2017) The circularity of the interest and will theories of rights. In: McBride M (ed.) New Essays on the Nature of Rights. Oxford: Hart, pp. 169-186. http://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/new-essays-on-the-nature-of-rights-9781509910144/
Cruft R, Liao SM & Renzo M (eds.) (2015) Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights. Philosophical Foundations of Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press. http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199688630.do
Cruft R (2015) From a Good Life to Human Rights: Some Complications. In: Cruft R, Liao S & Renzo M (eds.) Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights. Philosophical Foundations of Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 101-116. https://global.oup.com/academic/product/philosophical-foundations-of-human-rights-9780199688630?cc=gb〈=en&
Cruft R, Liao SM & Renzo M (2015) The Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights: An Overview. In: Cruft R, Liao S & Renzo M (eds.) Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights. Philosophical Foundations of Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 1-41. https://global.oup.com/academic/product/philosophical-foundations-of-human-rights-9780199688630?cc=gb〈=en&
Cruft R (2015) Human Rights Law Without Natural Moral Rights. Review of: The Heart of Human Rights, Allen E. Buchanan, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013, 336 pp. ISBN 9780199325382. Ethics and International Affairs, 29 (2), pp. 223-232. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0892679415000088
Cruft R (2015) Human Rights as Individualistically Justified: A Defence. In: Brooks T (ed.) Current Controversies in Political Philosophy. Current Controversies in Philosophy. London: Routledge, pp. 45-62. https://www.routledge.com/Current-Controversies-in-Political-Philosophy/Brooks/p/book/9780415517539
Cruft R (2014) Human Rights, Human Agency and Respect: Extending Griffin's View. In: Crisp R (ed.) Griffin on Human Rights. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 114-141. http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199668731.do
Cruft R (2011) Human Rights as Rights. In: Ernst G & Heilinger J (eds.) The Philosophy of Human Rights: Contemporary Controversies. Berlin: de Gruyter, pp. 129-158. http://www.degruyter.com/view/product/178551
Cruft R, Kramer M & Reiff M (eds.) (2011) Crime, Punishment, and Responsibility: The Jurisprudence of Antony Duff. Oxford: Oxford University Press. http://global.oup.com/academic/product/crime-punishment-and-responsibility-9780199592814;jsessionid=4EB18631174CEDD0C2480E5E3B14C507?cc=gb〈=en&
Reiff M & Cruft R (2011) Antony Duff and the Philosophy of Punishment. In: Cruft R, Kramer M & Reiff M (eds.) Crime, Punishment, and Responsibility: The Jurisprudence of Antony Duff. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 3-24. http://global.oup.com/academic/product/crime-punishment-and-responsibility-9780199592814;jsessionid=4EB18631174CEDD0C2480E5E3B14C507?cc=gb〈=en&
Cruft R (2010) Two Approaches to Human Rights. Review of: On Human Rights. By James Griffin. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2008. Pp. xiii + 339. ISBN 9780191553509
Poverty and Fundamental Rights: the Justification and Enforcement of Socio-Economic Rights. By David Bilchitz. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2007. Pp. xviii + 279. ISBN 9780191021695. Philosophical Quarterly, 60 (238), pp. 176-182. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9213.2009.638.x
Cruft R (2009) What Do Basic Rights Demand?. In: Chappell T (ed.) The Problem of Moral Demandingness: New Philosophical Essays. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. http://www.palgrave.com/products/title.aspx?pid=297799
Cruft R (2008) Liberalism and the changing character of the criminal law: Response to Ashworth and Zedner. Commentary on: Ashworth, A. & Zedner, L. (2007). Defending the criminal law: Reflections on the changing character of crime, procedure, and sanctions. Criminal Law and Philosophy, doi: 10.1007/s11572-007-9033-2.. Criminal Law and Philosophy, 2 (1), pp. 59-65. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11572-007-9034-1
Cruft R (2007) Policy Implications of the Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights. In: Ollero A (ed.) Human Rights and Ethics / Derechos humanos y Ètica: Proceedings of the 22nd IVR World Congress Granada 2005. Volume III. Archiv fur Rechts-und Sozialphilosophie, 108. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, pp. 60-67. http://www.steiner-verlag.de/programm/fachbuch/philosophie/rechts-und-sozialphilosophie/reihen/view/titel/56045.html