Philosopher Robert Audi elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Author: Amanda Skofstad

Robert AudiRobert Audi

Robert Audi, John A. O’Brien Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame, has been elected to the 2018 class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS). He is the seventh living Notre Dame philosophy faculty member to be so honored and is to be inducted at an October ceremony in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Audi is among 213 members elected to the 238th AAAS class, which includes 44th president of the United States Barack H. Obama; Supreme Court Justice Sonia M. Sotomayor; NASA climatologist Claire L. Parkinson; author Ta-Nehisi Coates; Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts chair Katherine G. Farley; actor Tom Hanks; and Netflix Inc. CEO W. Reed Hastings Jr.

A member of the Notre Dame faculty since 2003 — first as David E. Gallo Professor of Business Ethics and then as John A. O’Brien Professor of Philosophy — Audi holds a bachelor’s degree from Colgate University and a master’s and doctorate from the University of Michigan. His research focuses on moral and political philosophy, epistemology, philosophy of mind and philosophy of religion. Audi’s work has myriad applications for such fields as business, medicine, government and journalism.

The author of 20 books and numerous articles, Audi is the editor-in-chief of “The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy” and was awarded the 2016 Quinn Prize, the American Philosophical Association’s highest honor for service to the profession. He is a past president of the American Philosophical Association, a recipient of many grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the subject of two volumes of critical studies on his work.   

“I have learned immensely from my colleagues and students, and the work that earned this honor owes much to the value of our interactions over the years,” said Audi. “A great challenge ahead is to bring the results of good philosophical thinking to bear more widely on contemporary problems in and beyond higher education.”

Founded in 1780, the AAAS is one of the nation’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers. Convening leaders from the academic, business and government sectors to respond to the challenges facing the nation and the world, AAAS research concerns higher education, the humanities and the arts; science and technology policy; global security and energy; and American institutions and the public good. AAAS has elected leading “thinkers and doers” from each generation, including George Washington and Benjamin Franklin in the 18th century, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the 19th and Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill in the 20th.

Audi joins 24 other AAAS members on Notre Dame’s faculty. Recent elections include Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.; Karl Ameriks, McMahon-Hank Professor of Philosophy Emeritus; R. Scott Appleby, Marilyn Keough Dean of the Keough School of Global AffairsScott Mainwaring, Eugene and Helen Conley Professor of Political Science; George Marsden, Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History Emeritus; Jean Porter, John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology; and Peter van Inwagen, John Cardinal O’Hara Professor of Philosophy.