Carrie Figdor

Carrie Figdor
Director of Undergraduate Studies
PhD, City University of New York Graduate Center, 2005
260 English-Philosophy Building
Office Hours: 
Research Interests: 

philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, philosophy of language, metaphysics, neuroethics, media ethics

Dr. Figdor's primary research areas are philosophy of mind, cognitive science, and neuroscience, philosophy of science, philosophy of language, and metaphysics, plus neuroethics and media ethics. Her current research focuses on the use of psychological terms throughout biology, a topic at the intersection of philosophy language, mind, and science.  She is also working on projects in mechanistic explanation, the relation between psychology and moral status, and the epistemology of journalism. 

Dr. Figdor also has faculty appointments in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience.


Selected Publications: 


  • Pieces of Mind: The Proper Domain of Psychological Predicates (Oxford University Press, 2018).



  • Big Data and Changing Concepts of the Human. Forthcoming. European Review.
  • Experiences of Duration and Cognitive Penetrability. Forthcoming in B. Brogaard and D. Gatzia, eds., The Rational Roles of Perceptual Experience: Beyond vision. Oxford. 
  • The Fallacy of the Homuncular Fallacy (2018). Belgrade Philosophical Annual 31: 41-56. Open access:
  • Trust Me: News, Credibility Deficits, and Balance (2018). In J. Saunders and C. Fox, eds., Media Ethics, Free Speech, and the Requirements of Democracy. Routledge. p. 69-86.
  • The Rise of Cognitive Science (2018). In A. Kind, ed., Philosophy of Mind in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries. Routledge. p.280-302.
  • (When) Is Science Reporting Ethical?: The case for recognizing shared epistemic responsibility in science journalism (2017). Frontiers in Communication. Open access:
  • On the Proper Domain of Psychological Predicates (2017). Synthese 194 (11): 4289-4310.
  • Experimental Philosophy and the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy (2016). With Matthew Drabek. In W. Buckwalter and J. Sytsma, eds., A Companion to Experimental Philosophy, Wiley-Blackwell). p. 590-602.
  • Is Free Will Necessary for Moral Responsibility? A case for rethinking their relationship and the design of experimental studies in moral psychology (2015). With Mark Phelan. Mind & Language 30 (5): 603-627.
  • Verbs and Minds (2014). In M. Sprevak and J. Kallestrup, eds., New Waves in Philosophy of Mind, Palgrave-Macmillan).
  • What’s the Use of an Intrinsic Property? (2014). In R. Francescotti, ed., Companion to Intrinsic Properties, DeGruyter).
  • "What is the "Cognitive" in Cognitive Neuroscience?" (2013) Neuroethics 6 (1):105-114 (online first version posted 12 April 2013).
  • "New Skepticism about Science" (2013). Philosophers' Magazine 60 (-1):51 - 56.
  • Paxton, M., Figdor, C. and Tiberius, V. (2012). Quantifying the Gender Gap: An Empirical Study of the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy. Hypatia 27 (4):949-957
  • "Semantics and Metaphysics in Informatics: Towards an Ontology of Tasks" (2011). Topics in Cognitive Science. (3): 222-226.
  • Neuroscience and the Multiple Realization of Cognitive Functions (2010). Philosophy of Science vol. 77 no. 3 (July), 419-456.
  • Objectivity in the News: Finding a Way Forward (2010). Journal of Mass Media Ethics vol. 25 no. 1, 19-33.
  • Is Objective News Possible? (2010). In Christopher Meyers, ed., Journalism Ethics: A Philosophical Approach (New York: Oxford University Press), 153-164. 
  • “Semantic Externalism and the Mechanics of Thought” (2009). Minds & Machines vol.19 no. 1 (February), 1-24.
  • “Intrinsically/Extrinsically” (2008). The Journal of Philosophy vol. 105 no. 11(November), 691-718.
  • “Can Mental Representations Be Triggering Causes?” (2003) Consciousness and Emotion   4:1, 43-61.



Professional History: 
  • 2013-Current Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, and Iowa Neuroscience Institute, University of Iowa 
  • 2013-2014 (AY) Research fellow, Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh 
  • 2007-2013 Assistant Professor, University of Iowa
  • Spring 2012 Visiting Assistant Professor, Duke University
  • 2005-2007 Visiting Assistant Professor, Claremont McKenna College
  • 2006 NEH Summer Seminar in Mind & Metaphysics, Washington University in St. Louis
  • 2000-2005 Adjunct Lecturer, Rutgers University-Newark
  • 1986-1997 Newswoman, The Associated Press (Caracas, Seattle, New York)