Professor Daniel D. Hutto Dan Hutto

Professor of Philosophical Psychology

DPhil (York, England); MPhil (St. Andrews, Scotland); BA (Marist, USA)

Room number: 19.2021
Phone number: +61 (0) 2 4221 3987

BBC Interviews: Philosophical Psychology 1 and Philosophical Psychology 2
Professional Lecture: Making Sense of Ourselves and Others

Born and schooled in New York, I finished my undergraduate degree as a study abroad student in St Andrews, Scotland where my maternal roots lie. I returned to New York to teach fourth grade in the Bronx for a year in order to fund my MPhil in Logic and Metaphysics. After that I carried on my doctoral work in York, England. I lived in England with my wife and three lads for nearly 20 years. Australia is our new home.

My research is a sustained attempt to understand human nature in a way which respects natural science but which nevertheless rejects the impersonal metaphysics of much contemporary naturalism. In my most recent work I have developed a basic non-representational account of intentionality and phenomenal experience and proposals about what lies at the roots of our everyday social understanding. Reaching beyond philosophy, I have often been invited to speak at conferences and expert meetings aimed at clinical psychiatrists, educationalists, narratologists, neuroscientists and – most recently – sport psychologists.

Research interests/Areas of expertise

Although an analytic philosopher, by training, I adopt a broad and ecumenical approach to philosophical inquiry, willingly embracing justified insights from any school of thought. My recent research focuses primarily on issues in philosophy of mind, psychology and cognitive science. I am best known for promoting thoroughly non-representational accounts of enactive and embodied cognition, and for having developed a hypothesis which claims that engaging with narratives, understood as public artefacts, plays a critical role in underpinning distinctively human forms of cognition.

Current research projects

I am a node leader in the Marie Curie ‘Towards an Embodied Science of Intersubjectivity’ initial training network (2011-2015). I am also an active collaborator in the 'Agency, Normativity and Identity' project (2012-2015) funded by the Spanish Ministry of Innovation and Research.

In upcoming projects I intend to explore how we can, and why we must, understand the foundations of sciences of the of mind in non-representationalist terms. The main outcome of this research will appear as a new book with the MIT Press. I also plan to continue to investigate how social cognition emerges and the origins of content.

Complementing this work, with an eye on non-academic impact, I am also working on a new book, commissioned by Bloomsbury. It targets a general audience and spells out why clarifying issues in the philosophy of psychology matters crucially to our understanding of and ability to make good decisions about: education; animal welfare; psychopathology; sports science and religious practice.

Full Publication Listing

Searchable RIS Publications

Selected Major publications

Major Recent Books (Selected)

Radicalizing enactivism  Folk Psych Narratives  Wittgenstein end of philosophy  Narrative and folk psych  Narrative and understanding persons

Referred Journal Articles (selected)

  • “Enactivism: From a Wittgensteinian Point of View” American Philosophical Quarterly. 50: 3. (2013). 281-302.
  • “Fictionalism about Folk Psychology” The Monist. 96: 4. (2013). 585–607.
  • “Presumptuous Naturalism: A Cautionary Tale” American Philosophical Quarterly. 48 (2) 129 – 145. (2011). (Translated into French and reprinted in a special issue of Recherches sur la Philosophie et le Langage)
  • “The Narrative Practice Hypothesis: Origins and Applications of Folk Psychology” Philosophy: Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement. 82: 60 (2007). Also in Narrative and Understanding Persons. Hutto, D. (ed). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (2007). 43–68.
  • “The Limits of Spectatorial Folk Psychology” Mind and Language. 19:5. (2004). 548–73
  • “A Cause for Concern: Reasons, Causes and Explanations” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. 59:2. (1999). 381–401. Reprinted in Reasons and Causes: Causalism and Anti-causalism in the Philosophy of Action. D’Oro, G. and Sandis, C. (eds). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan (2013). 49-74.
  • “Davidson’s Identity Crisis” Dialectica, 52:1. (1998). 45–61.
  • “Making Sense of Nonsense: Kierkegaard and Wittgenstein” (co-authored with J. Lippitt) Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society. XCVIII, part III. (1998). 265–286.
  • “Consciousness Demystified: A Wittgensteinian Critique of Dennett’s Project” The Monist. 78:4. (1995). 464–478.

Research students

Research Supervisions

Current Supervisions

  • 3 PhDs – working non-representational theories of pretence/the emergence of normativity (Hertfordshire); 2 PhDs (to be advertised at Wollongong)

Previous Supervisions

  • PhD Born Again: Natality, Normativity and Narrative in Hannah Arendt's The Human Condition, Awarded Sept 2013
  • PhD, The Epistemology of Know How, awarded April 2013
  • PhD, Information-Theoretic Models of Social Interactions, awarded Oct 2012
  • PhD, Re-Thinking the Extended Mind, awarded Jun 2010
  • PhD, Kierkegaard and Indirect Communication, awarded Jul 2006
  • PhD, Subjectivity and Consciousness, awarded Dec 2005
  • MPhil, Pyrrhonism: Philosophy or Therapy?, awarded Nov 2004

Research Examinations

  • MPhil, The Evolution of Folk Psychology as a Narrative Practice, (Macquarie), Feb 2014
  • PhD, Robots that Say 'No': Acquisition of Linguistic Behaviour in Interaction Games with Humans (Hertfordshire), Dec 2013
  • MPhil, Beyond Boundaries: From Extended to Biosemiotic Minds (King’s College London), Nov 2013
  • PhD, Non-Transitive Phenomenal Indiscriminability: the Identity Problem and Ignorance Solution (Hertfordshire), May 2013
  • PhD, A Treatise on Language Methods and Language Games in Autism (Sheffield Hallam), Oct 2012
  • PhD, Being Consciousness (Antwerp), Jun 2011
  • Phd by publications, Applications of the Thought of Wittgenstein in the Philosophy of Art and Mind (Sunderland), Jan 2011
  • PhD, The Nature and Function of Spatio-Temporal Imagination (Nottingham), Feb 2010
  • PhD, Imagination, Perception and Belief (Nottingham), Jun 2006
  • DPhil, Philosophical Naturalization of Intentionality (Sussex), May 2004
  • MPhil, A Teleological Metaphysics for Normative Realism (King’s College London), May 2005

Recent awards and fellowships

'Radicalizing Enactivism: Basic Minds without Content' was designated a Choice Outstanding Academic Title 2013, and rated as one of the most original contributions in recent philosophy of mind.

Professional membership

  • Behavioural and Brain Sciences Associate
  • Member of the American Philosophical Association
  • Member of the British Philosophical Association
  • Treasurer of the British Wittgenstein Society, 2008 – 2013
  • Treasurer of the British Philosophical Association, 2003 – 2008

Competitive research funding

  • 'Towards an Embodied Science of Intersubjectivity’, Marie Curie Initial Training Network (£524,646) – CI (with S. Gallagher), 2011-2015
  • 'Agency, Normativity and Identity' Spanish Ministry of Innovation and Research (€44,800) – CI (with F. Aguiar, J. Navarrro, A.G. Torres, F. Broncano) 2012 -2014
  • 'Embodied Virtues and Expertise’, Australian Research Council ($293,000) – CI (with R. Menary, S. Gallagher), 2010-2013
  • 'Social Cognition and Social Narrative’, European Science Foundation (€45,000) – CI (with S. Gallagher, D. Zahavi), 2008
  • ‘Narrative Alternatives to Theories of Mind’, European Science Foundation (€28,720) – PI (with S. Gallagher), 2007
  • 'Folk Psychological Narratives’, Arts and Humanities Research Council (£14,013) – PI, 2005
  • ‘Narratives and Understanding Persons’, Royal Institute of Philosophy (£3,000) – PI, 2005
  • 'Composing Ourselves’, Mind Association Research Fellowship (£11,100) – PI, 2004-2005
  • ‘Mental Simulation Summer School’, National Endowment for the Humanities ($3,250) – PI, 1999


Last reviewed: 5 September, 2016