Adam Swift

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Adam Swift (born 1961) is a British political philosopher and sociologist who specialises in debates surrounding liberal egalitarianism. He has published books on communitarianism, on the philosophical aspects of school choice, and on social justice, as well as an introduction to contemporary political theory which has been translated into several languages.

Swift studied PPE at Balliol College, Oxford, where he was taught by Steven Lukes. He then did an MPhil in Sociology at Nuffield College, and subsequently became a Fellow of Balliol College. He completed his DPhil while a Fellow, on the topic of 'A Sociologically Informed Political Theory'.[1] He has since been Director of the Oxford Centre for the Study of Social Justice, and has held visiting positions at Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Australian National University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.[2] He is currently working on developing a liberal egalitarian theory of the family with Harry Brighouse. Since January 2013, he has been Professor of Political Theory in the Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of Warwick. [3]

Swift writes for both academic and non-academic audiences, and is a frequent contributor to political debates about education.[4][5]

Swift is a member of Giving What We Can, an international society for the promotion of poverty relief.[6]


  • Political Philosophy: A Beginner’s Guide for Students and Politicians [2001, 3rd edition 2014] [7]
  • How Not To Be A Hypocrite: School Choice for the Morally Perplexed Parent [2003]
  • Against the Odds? Social Class and Social Justice in Industrial Societies (with Gordon Marshall and Stephen Roberts) [1997]
  • Liberals and Communitarians (with Stephen Mulhall) [1992, 2nd edition 1996]


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