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The Australian National University

Seth Lazar

School or Centre: Centre for Moral, Social and Political Theory

Phone: 02 6125 8995, x 58995
Location: HC Coombs Building, Room 1107

Website: My profile website


DPhil (Oxon)

MPhil (Oxon)

BA(Hons) (Oxon)


Seth Lazar has published on a wide range of topics in political philosophy, applied ethics, and normative ethics. He has written on corrective justice, the nature of rights, associative duties, the ethics of war and self-defence, the ethics of risk, and moral decision-making under uncertainty.

Most of his work has been on the ethics of war, self-defence, and risk, but he has also written on corrective justice, the nature of rights, and associative duties. He has published papers in Ethics (2009, 2015), Philosophy & Public Affairs (2010, 2012), Australasian Journal of Philosophy (2015), and other leading moral and political philosophy journals.

In 2011 Seth was awarded the Frank Chapman Sharp Prize, the American Philosophical Association's prize for the best unpublished monograph on the philosophy of war and peace. He is a Global Ethics Fellow of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, and has written op-eds for Boston Review, and recorded interviews with philosophy podcasts such as Public Ethics Radio, and Philosophy Bites. In 2013, Seth Lazar was awarded a $366,000 DECRA grant, by the ARC.

Research Interests

Moral and political philosophy, especially ethics of war, self-defence, risk, associative duties, corrective justice, rights.



Sparing Civilians. Oxford: Oxford University Press (2015)

Edited Volumes and Symposia

The Oxford Handbook of the Ethics of War. Oxford: Oxford University Press, expected 2016, first chapters online now. (Co-Editor, with Helen Frowe)

The Morality of Defensive War. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Co-Editor, with Cécile Fabre) (2014)

Symposium on Jeff McMahan’s Killing in War. Ethics (guest editor) (2011)

Journal Articles

‘Proxy Battles in the Ethics of War’ (with Laura Valentini), Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, accepted 1/04/2016

‘Evaluating the Revisionist Critique of Just War Theory’, Daedalus, accepted 28/2/2016

‘Anton’s Game: Deontological Decision Theory for an Iterated Decision Problem’, Utilitas, accepted 17/05/2016 (2017)

‘Just War Theory: Revisionists Vs Traditionalists’, Annual Review of Political Science, accepted 12/5/2016 (2017)

‘Complicity, Collectives, and Killing in War’, Law and Philosophy, online first: (2016)

‘The Justification of Associative Duties’, Journal of Moral Philosophy, 13:1, 28-55 (2016)

‘Risky Killing and the Ethics of War’, Ethics, 126:1, 91-117 (2015)

‘Authorization and the Morality of War’, Australasian Journal of Philosophy, forthcoming in print, available online now (2015)

'Authority, Oaths, Contracts, and Uncertainty in War’, Thought, 4:1, 52–58 (2015)

‘Necessity and Noncombatant Immunity’, Review of International Studies, 40:1, 53-76 (2014)

‘Associative Duties and the Ethics of Killing in War’, Journal of Practical Ethics, 1:1, 3-48 (2013)

‘Necessity in Self-Defense and War’, Philosophy & Public Affairs, 40:1, 3-44 (2012)

‘Introduction’, Ethics, 122:1, 8-9 (2011)

‘A Liberal Defence of (Some) Duties to Compatriots’, Journal of Applied Philosophy, 27:3, 246-57 (2010)

‘The Responsibility Dilemma for Killing in War: A Review Essay’, Philosophy & Public Affairs, 38:2, 180-213 (2010)

‘Responsibility, Risk, & Killing in Self-Defense’, Ethics, 119:4, 699-728 (2009)

‘Debate: Do Associative Duties Really Not Matter?’, Journal of Political Philosophy, 17:1, 90-101 (2009)

‘The Nature & Disvalue of Injury’, Res Publica, 15:3, 289-304 (2009)

‘Corrective Justice & the Possibility of Rectification’, Ethical Theory & Moral Practice, 11:4, 355–68
Chapters in Peer-Reviewed Edited Volumes (2008)

‘The Associativist Account of the Ethics of War’, Global Political Theory, David Held and Pietro Maffettone (eds.), Cambridge: Polity. Accepted 15/3/2015

‘Method in the Morality of War’, The Oxford Handbook of Ethics and War, Seth Lazar & Helen Frowe (eds.), New York: Oxford University Press. Accepted 8/2014

‘War’s Endings and the Structure of Just War Theory’, The Ethics of War, Sam Rickless and Saba Bazargan (eds.), New York: Oxford University Press. Accepted 5/2014

‘Liability and the Ethics of War: A Reply to Strawser and McMahan’, The Ethics of Self-Defence, Coons and Weber (ed.), New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 292-304. (2016)

‘War’, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Zalta (ed.), Spring 2016 edition: (2016)

‘National Defence, Self-Defence, and the Problem of Political Aggression’, in The Morality of Defensive War, Lazar and Fabre (eds.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, 9-37 (2014)

‘Introduction’, with Cécile Fabre, in The Morality of Defensive War, Lazar and Fabre (eds.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1-8 (2014)

‘War’, International Encyclopaedia of Ethics, Lafollette (ed.), Wiley-Blackwell (8000 words) (2013)

‘Just War Theory’, Oxford Companion to Comparative Politics, Joel Krieger (ed.), Oxford University Press (3,500 words) (2013)

‘Scepticism about Jus Post Bellum’, Morality, Jus Post Bellum, and International Law" Larry May and Andrew Forcehimes (eds.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 204-22 (2012)

‘The Morality and Law of War’, Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Law, Andrei Marmor (ed.), London: Routledge, 364-79 (2012)

Book Reviews

Cécile Fabre’s Cosmopolitan War, Ethics, 124:2, 406-412, (3,500 words) (2014)

‘War: Essays in Political Philosophy’, Review, Mind, 120:479, 895-901 (3,000 words) (2011)


American Philosophical Association Frank Chapman Sharp memorial prize for the best unpublished monograph on the philosophy of war & peace. Biennial prize ($1500). Awarded for monograph derived from unpublished chapters of thesis. (2011)

Res Publica Postgraduate Essay Prize for 2008
Prize (£100) awarded for my paper ‘The Nature & Disvalue of Injury’(2009)

Society for Applied Philosophy Annual Conference Postgraduate Essay Prize
Prize (fees & expenses) awarded for paper ‘Risk & Responsibility’, judged best postgraduate essay (2008)


American Philosophical Association, Australasian Association of Philosophy, Global Ethics Fellow of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs

Projects and Grants

2013 ARC DECRA13 Award (2013: $119,000, 2014: $122,000, 2015: $125,000)
‘Justifying War’. Sole CI.


Phil4009 Course Convenor

Phil8011 Semester 2 2016

Updated: 12 August 2016/ Responsible Officer:  Head of School / Page Contact:  Web Publisher