David Owen, Professor of Social and Political Philosophy at the University of Southampton, has been conferred the award of Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.
Professor Owen, who has been at Southampton since 1995, was elected for his outstanding contribution in applying his knowledge and expertise in social science to education, research and society.
“This year has been challenging in many ways but also rewarding,” said Professor Owen. “To be SSS Visiting Professor at the Institute of Advanced Studies in Princeton this semester was already a great honour and to be elected a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences during this period adds icing to the cake.
“That it is election by one’s peers makes it particularly special,” Professor Owen continued. “No scholar is an island and this would not have happened without the collegial support and intellectual engagement of my academic colleagues, and my students (past and present), in the School of Economic, Social and Political Sciences at Southampton as well as across the University and around the world over the past twenty-five years, and I am grateful to them all for the myriad ways in which they have helped me to think more deeply and more clearly in my research.
“But I also owe another debt,” he emphasised. “If my years at Southampton have taught me anything it is that academic staff only get to stand in the spotlight taking the applause because their achievements are enabled by the work of all the administrative staff in the Faculty Office, the Research Office, the Student Office, and elsewhere, without whose backstage labours the stage would be in darkness and the theatre empty.”
A graduate of the University of Durham, where he achieved his BSc and PhD, Professor Owen has also been Visiting Professor of Politics and Philosophy at the Goethe University, Frankfurt on several occasions.
In August this year, it was announced that he would spend the first semester of the 2020-21 academic year as the SSS Visiting Professor at the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton in New Jersey. This prestigious appointment recognises his wide range of contributions to social and political philosophy. In this role, he is working on projects related to Nietzsche and the politics of culture as well as the concepts of justification and vindication in ethics and political philosophy.
He is also currently a Co-Investigator of the ESRC-GCRF funded project ReGHID – Redressing Gendered Health Inequalities of Displaced Women and Girls – directed by Southampton Professor Pia Riggirozzi.
Throughout his career, Professor Owen has also published widely on the problems of political community, addressing issues of multiculturalism and, especially, the ethics and politics of migration. He has also written extensively on democratic theory, ranging from foundational to policy-relevant levels of analysis.
Professor Owen is co-editor of the Critical Powers book series for Manchester University Press and of Citizenship Transitions for Palgrave Macmillan. He also serves on the editorial/advisory boards of European Journal of Political Theory, Journal of Nietzsche Studies, Max Weber Studies, Political Studies, Political Studies Review and Political Theory (of which he was previously Reviews Editor).