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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Practical Philosophy/Ethics

Daniele Bruno

Daniele Bruno


E-Mail: daniele.bruno@hu-berlin.de


Research Interests

Normative and Applied Ethics, Metaethics, Theories of Moral Responsiblity.


Doctoral student in Philosophy at Humboldt-University of Berlin since 2015. M.A. and B.A. in Philosophy and Social Sciences in Berlin and Paris. Doctoral Fellow in the Einstein Ethics Group led by R. Jay Wallace since April 2016. Visiting research student at King's College London from October to December 2017. Lecturer at University of Potsdam since October 2020.


“Error Theory, Unbelievability and the Normative Objection”, Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 17 (2): 219-227, 2020 (Print Version).

“Trust-Based Theories of Promising”, Philosophical Quarterly 70 (280): 443-463, 2020 (Print Version).

Talks (Selection)

“A Trilemma for Reductivism about Promissory Normativity”, XXV. Kongress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Philosophie, FAU Erlangen Nuremberg (rescheduled to September 2021);

“Value-Based Accounts of Normative Powers and the Wishful Thinking Objection”, Research Colloquium for Practical Philosophy, University of Berne (28.10.2020); 1st Munich Graduate Conference in Ethics, Münchner Kompetenzzentrum Ethik, LMU Munich (30.07.2020)

Comments on Sarah Buss: “Why Constitutivist Accounts of Practical Reason Cannot Account for Our Kind of Agency” Conference: Social Agency, Group Agency & Relational Normativity, University of Vienna (28.06.2019)

“What, If Anything, Is Mysterious About Promissory Obligation?”, 8th Humboldt-Princeton Grad Conference, HU Berlin (24.07.2018)

“Promissory Obligation and the Value of Normative Control”, Bern-Zürich Workshop in Moral Theory, University of Bern (01.-02.06.2018); Conference: The Future of Normativity, University of Kent (28.-30.06.2018); 10. Kongress der Gesellschaft für Analytische Philosophie, University of Cologne (17.-20.09.2018)

“Trust-Based Accounts of Promissory Obligation”, 7th Humboldt-Princeton Grad Conference, HU Berlin (26.-28.07.2017); XXIV. Kongress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Philosophie, HU Berlin (26.09.2017)

“Being Fully Excused for Wrongdoing”, Workshop in Practical Philosophy, Saarland University, Saarbrücken (01.-02.07.2017); 6th Humboldt-Princeton Grad Conference, Princeton University (07.09.2016)

“Subjective Accounts of Moral Obligation and the Problem of Culpable Ignorance”, Southampton-Humboldt Normativity Conference, University of Southampton (23.06.2017); XXIV. Deutscher Kongress für Philosophie, HU Berlin (25.09.2017)

“Must We Worry about Epistemic Shirkers?”, Gothenburg Responsibility Project Conference, University of Gothenburg, (25.08.2016)

“Zwei Probleme für rechtebasierte Notwehrtheorien” [“Two Problems for Rights-Based Theories of Self Defense”], 3. Tagung für Praktische Philosophie, University of Salzburg, (02.10.2015)

Current Project

The Normativity of Promises (PhD Research Project)

Promises lead an interesting double life in philosophical debate. On the one hand, that one is obliged to keep one’s promises appears to be one of the most straightforward, unquestionable moral truths around. On the other hand, promissory obligation, as an obligation voluntarily incurred through a performative speech act, has appeared to many as somewhat mysterious, and in need of a specific explanation. My dissertation is concerned with the question of whether these two faces of promissory normativity can be reconciled. I lay out and defend a form of non-reductivism about promissory normativity, according to which duty to keep promises need not and cannot be explained in terms of any other duties. As I show, contrary to first appearances, non-reductivism is compatible with a deeper explanation of our promissory power. I offer such an explanation that ultimately provides for a value-based grounding story for our promissory obligations building on the notion of trust. Comparing and contrasting it with important rival positions, I argue that the resultant Two-Level-View is a strong contender for the best available account of promissory normativity.


Ignorance and Moral Responsibility
Graduate Seminar, co-taught with Thomas Schmidt, Winter 2016/17

Ethics and Neuroscience
Introductory seminar for the interdisciplinary Master of the Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Summer 2016

Introduction to Philosophy
Tutorial, Winter 2014/2015