Michele Palmira

Postes occupés

2014-2015 à 2015-2016 Chercheur-se postdoctoral-e,


Research Interests

My main research interests are in epistemology and the philosophy of language. I have worked on the problem of epistemic peer disagreement, the debate between semantic contextualism and relativism, and the phenomenon of apparent faultless disagreement.

The research project I carried out as a postdoctoral fellow at CRÉ, GRIN, and McGill University, titled “Disagreement and Normativity” and supervised by Professor Andrew Reisner and Professor Yves Bouchard, focused on the so-called epistemological argument from disagreement which, roughly put, says that the discovery of a disagreement with an equally informed and thoughtful individual requires us to suspend judgement about the targeted issue. I aimed to offer a new understanding of the challenge raised by the epistemological argument, and to propose an account of the epistemic significance of disagreement which does not result in a sceptical view.

I am also interested in some issues at the intersection between moral epistemology and social epistemology. During my postdoctoral fellowship at CRÉ I developped this interest by focusing on moral expert testimony and exploring to what extent, if any, one should defer to an alleged moral expert.


I graduated from Bologna University in March 2009 by writing a dissertation on semantic contextualism under Professor Eva Picardi’s supervision. During my undergraduate studies I spent a year as an Erasmus exchange student in Paris (Sorbonne) and I specialised mostly in the philosophy of language.

By participating in the activities of the research centre COGITO (Bologna) since 2009, I’ve widened my competences to individual and social epistemology.

In my PhD dissertation at University of Modena & Reggio Emilia (2010-2013), titled “Intractable Disagreements” and supervised by Professor Annalisa Coliva, I analysed some semantic and epistemic features of disagreement in different domains of discourse.

During my PhD in Modena, I visited two places that are representative of analytic philosophy in Europe: the Institut Jean Nicod, where I carried out my research under the supervision of Professor François Recanati, and the LOGOS Group in Barcelona, supervised by Professor Max Kölbel. I also spent a term as visiting scholar at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee under the supervision of Professor Robert Schwartz.

I presented my work at several conferences and workshops both in Europe and in the US (Barcelona, Lisbon, Los Angeles, Madrid, Manchester, Miami, Milwaukee, Paris, St. Louis).

From November 2013 to November 2014 I was a research fellow at the Department of Culture and Language Studies at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia.

Here is a list of selected publications.


Il disaccordo. Riflessione critica tra epistemologia e filosofia del linguaggio, 2014, Roma: Aracne Editrice (in Italian).

Selected articles


« Moral Deference and Deference to an Epistemic Peer« , The Philosophical Quarterly, DOI10.1093/pq/pqv014 (co-écrit avec Cory Davia, University of California at San Diego).


“Is rational disagreement in philosophy possible?”, Iride, 27(73): pp. 595-612.

“Why truth-relativists should be non-conformists”, Acta Analytica, DOI: 10.1007/s12136-014-0243-7

“The semantic significance of faultless disagreement”, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, DOI: 10.1111/papq.12038.


(with Delia Belleri) “Towards a unified notion of disagreement”, Grazer Philosophische Studien, 88: 139-159.

“A puzzle about the agnostic response to peer disagreement”, Philosophia: Philosophical Quarterly of Israel, 41(4): 1253-1261.

“On the necessity of the evidential equality condition for epistemic peerage”, Logos & Episteme, 4(1): 113-123.

“Belief revision, uniqueness, and the equal weight view”, The Reasoner, 7(1): 4-5.


“A critique of contextualist approaches to peer disagreement ”, Discipline Filosofiche, 22(2): 27-48.