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Dr. Andrew Smith

Andrew Frederick Smith, PhD

Department Head, Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science
Professor of Philosophy and Environmental Studies
Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science
Department of English and Philosophy
Center for Science, Technology and Society
Office: Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building (PISB), Room 321
3245 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA
Phone: 215.895.2627

Additional Sites:


  • PhD, Philosophy, Stony Brook University

Curriculum Vitae:

Download (PDF)

Research Interests:

  • Environmental Philosophy/Environmental Humanities
  • Food Justice
  • Climate Justice
  • Social and Political Philosophy
  • Decolonization


Methodologically, I am part of a constellation of scholars with backgrounds in philosophy, political theory, and legal theory whose current work draws heavily on and contributes to research in Indigenous studies, environmental studies, and related fields. While I retain a firm foothold in philosophy, I routinely engage with scholars across the humanities and social sciences. The main audiences for most of my current projects include researchers of decoloniality, decolonization, and environmental justice both within and beyond philosophy.

Indigenous research methodologies are land-based, sense-making tools that promote relationship building, responsible knowledge exchange, and epistemic sovereignty. Often drawn from ancestral teachings and protocols, these methodologies are grounded in place and community. Within my current work, I engage with scholars who center these methodologies and are well versed in their application.

I likewise incorporate a Western research framework that has come to be called synthetic philosophy. While conceptual analysis is part of my methodological toolkit, it serves a synthetic approach to philosophy that is “largely a matter of trying to put things together, trying to get the pieces of very large puzzles to make sense,” as Peter Godfrey-Smith states. This methodology routinely brings together philosophical research with insights and knowledge from the social sciences, grey literature, and the natural sciences with two main aims. The first is to offer coherent accounts of complex systems and problems. The second is to connect these accounts to wider social, cultural, and ecological concerns.

Disciplinarily, interweaving Indigenous research methodologies with synthetic philosophy offers a necessary reminder that Indigenous philosophy may be relatively new as a scholarly subfield but remains the first philosophy ever practiced. This reminder is critical for diversifying the discipline, decolonizing academia, and increasing the scope, flexibility, and innovativeness of Western research frameworks.

Selected Publications:


Recent Articles:

  • “Climate Crisis as Relational Crisis: Centering Indigenous Feminist Conceptions of Responsibility in Environmental Discourse,” with Shelbi Nahwilet Meissner (forthcoming, Feminist Philosophy Quarterly).
  • “Progressive Reckonings, Indigenous Feminist Praxis, and Resisting the Common Roots of Reproductive and Climate Injustice,” with Mercer Gary, Shelbi Nahwilet Meissner, and Joel Reynolds (forthcoming, International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics).
  • “Indigenous Pedagogies for Burned-Out Students on a Burned-Out Planet,” APA Studies on Native American and Indigenous Philosophy 22(2) (2023).
  • “An Ecological Conception of Personhood,” Environmental Ethics 45(1) (2023).
  • “Decolonizing Allyship and Settler Support for Indigenous Climate Justice: A Note of Thanks to Andrea Sullivan-Clarke,” Hypatia; 38(2) (2023).
  • “Surviving Sustainability: Degrowth, Environmental Justice, and Support for the Chronically Ill,” Journal of Philosophy of Disability 1(1) (2021).
  • “Symbioculture: A Kinship-Based Conception of Sustainable Food Systems,” Environmental Philosophy 18(2) (2021).
  • “Intended and Unintended Successes,” in The Ethics of Homelessness: Philosophical Perspectives, 2e, ed. G. John M. Abbarno and Naomi Zack (Leiden, NL: Brill Rodopi, 2020).
  • “Plant Sentience,” in Encyclopedia of Food and Agricultural Ethics, 2e, ed. Paul B. Thompson and David M. Kaplan (Dordrecht, NL: Springer, 2019).
  • “From Victims to Survivors? Struggling to Live Ecoconsciously in an Ecocidal Culture,” Environmental Philosophy 14(2) (2017).
  • “Food Deserts, Capabilities, and the Rectification of Democratic Failure,” Journal of Human Development and Capabilities 17(2) (2016).
  • “Political Deliberation and the Challenge of Bounded Rationality,” Politics, Philosophy & Economics 13(3) (2014).