Placement Record

Openings for academic positions teaching philosophy at the college level are highly competitive. In recent years the ratio of potential candidates to available openings was as extreme as 8 to 1. This could equate to more than 2,000 candidates for fewer than 250 openings.

The University at Buffalo boasts a good record of placing our PhD graduates in academic positions. Of approximately 77 graduates from 2008-2023, thirty-four are employed in tenure-track or equivalent positions at the college or university level, twelve are employed in ontology-related positions in government, industry or research, and two are pursuing further degrees in law or medicine. 

The Placement Record, since 2008, is contained in the chart below. 

Placement details are updated to reflect changes in employment status. Annual dates indicate the year of degree conferral. To the best of our knowledge,  the information listed below is accurate as of August 2023. 

To update information on this page, please contact Barry Smith,  via email. 

Updated August 13, 2023


Dissertation Title



Spiliotakaras, Thanos
The Beautiful Form: Reconsidering Kant's Aesthetics
James Lawler
Merrell, Eric
The Ontology of Relevance
Barry Smith
Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab
Franda, Francesco
Social Kinds: A User’s Manual
Neil E. Williams
Lecturer, University of Amsterdam; Lecturer, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Germany 
Memory, Speak! An Essay on the Computational Theory of Mind, Declarative Memory, and the Problem(s) of Relevance 
Barry Smith
Senior Solutions Architect at Aleph One Consulting
Kelly, Daniel     Ordo Ab Chao:  Kant and the Task of History Mediation Lewis Powell Assistant Director, UB Center for Educational Innovation
Kelly, Robert  Understanding Addiction
David Hershenov  Philosophy Instructor (Tenure Track) Bakersfield College, Bakersfield, CA
Murray, Justin Stabilizing the Self:  A Study of Personal Authenticity Nicolas Bommarito Instructor, Ashford University, Santa Maria CA
Sharaf, Ali     Buddhist and Islamic Ethics as Moral Phenomenology James Lawler Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Kuwait University, Kuwait
Hahn, David Regarding Conspiracy Theories James Beebe   Adjunct Professor of Philosophy,  SUNY  Geneseo, NY
Nomikos, Ariane Argyro A Matter of Place Carolyn Korsmeyer Assistant Professor, Tenure track, West Virginia University; Clinical Assistant Professor, UB Philosophy; Adjunct Professor, NYU Tandon School of Engineering Department of Technology, Culture and Society; Lecturer, CSU Channel Islands, Environmental Science & Resource Management.
Donohue, Brian  Social Ontology and Social Normativity Barry Smith From 2021: Risk Manager, Ontology & Semantic Technology, Capital One; Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab.
McAndrew, Stephen Creating Social Solidarity In A Diverse World By Fostering Economic Relationships Ryan Muldoon  Senior Lecturer, Philosophy, Niagara University; From 2022: Program Director, Institute for Humane Studies 
Dowland, S. Clint  Embodied Minds and the Sparse Ontology: The Intersection of Personal Ontology and Composition David Hershenov Postdoctoral Associate, Department of Health Outcomes and Biomedical Informatics, College of Medicine, University of Florida
Ray, Patrick De Se Cognitive Attitudes and Their Ascriptions David Braun Ontologist, Allen Institute for Brain Science, Seattle, WA LinkedIn
Monaghan, Jake A Theory of Consent Ryan Muldoon Assistant Professor, U of New Orleans; From 2023: Assistant Professor, Tenure Track, U of Southern California (USC)  
Otte, J. Neil
Moral Psychology: An Ontological Approach Barry Smith Senior Ontologist, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab
Minemura, Yuichi Metaphysical Analysis of Contemporary Brain Death Controversies 
David Hershenov From 2021: Postdoctoral Fellow at Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine; Full-time Lecturer, Tenure Track,  Gunma Paz University. 
Moran, Michael Rethinking Aristotle’s Theory of Friendship in the Internet Age Jorge Gracia Adjunct Instructor, University at Buffalo
Houston, Jon Going over the Dark Places: A Philosophical Model of Fitness Maximizing. Highly Interconnected Systems in Highly Dynamic Environments Ryan Muldoon

Assistant Professor, St. John's University. From 2022: Research Analyst, Bell Bank. 

Guzman-Orozco, Hector On the Nature of Indexical Beliefs David Braun Ontologist, La Jolla Institute for Immunology; from 2022: tenure track position, Mt. San Jacinto College
Liu, Shih Yun  On Natural Kind Terms John Kearns Assistant Professor, Inner Mongolia University
Limbaugh, David The Flexibility of Reality: An Essay on Modality, Representation, and Powers Neil Williams Department of Energy, Postdoctoral Fellowship for Ontology Research





Newhouse, Deacon

Everyday Aesthetics: A Deweyan Ecological Perspective

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, Canisius College, Buffalo, NY

Larsen, Rasmus Rosenberg

Pathologizing Evil:  A Critique of Modern Psychopathy Research

Kah Kyung Cho

Assistant Professor, University of Toronto Mississauga

Cline, Brendan

Valuing a Normatively Inert World

James Beebe

Assistant Professor of Business Ethics (tenure track), California State University Channel Islands

Gifford, Michael

Exploring Realism and Truth

David Braun

Lecturer (permanent), Arizona State University

Gezella, Thomas

Education for Adults: Levinas and the Philosophy of Education

Richard Cohen

Medical School Applicant






Koch, Peter

A Theory of Patient Welfare

Barry Smith

Assistant Professor, Philosophy of Medicine, Villanova University, Villanova, PA

Choi, Dobin Sentimentalist Virtue Theories of Mengzi and Hume Jiyuan Yu Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Iowa

Sicienski, Shane William

The Syntax and Semantics of Names

David Braun

Skillz, Inc.

Raehll, Meghan

Tool Use and Mind:  Extended Selfing as Implied by the Extended Mind

James Beebe

Assistant Dean, Center for Teaching Excellence, Franklin University, Columbus, OH

Krgovic, Jelena

Existential Psychoanalysis and the Nature of Mental Disorder:  Between the Medical Model and Antipsychiatry

James Lawler

Researcher at Innovation Roundtable, Copenhagen, Denmark

Otto, Jessica Marie

What is the Appropriate Role of White Philosophers Who Study Race:  Derrick Bell, Racial Capitalism and Why “I Live to Harass White Folks”

Richard Cohen

Assistant Professor of Instruction, University of Akron, OH

Lavine, Matthew

A Contemporary Introduction to the Analytic/Synthetic Distinction, Chapter 1 of “A Theory of Analyticity

David Braun

Assistant Professor, Philosophy, SUNY Potsdam






Sweeney Nolan, Catherine

The Metaphysics and Ethics of Vital Organ Donation

David Hershenov

Assistant Professor of Philosophy, University of Dallas, TX

Donhauser, Justin

A Philosophy of Theoretical Ecology for Environmental Policy

Neil Williams and Kenneth Shockley

Assistant Professor on a renewable rather than TT line, Bowling Green State University

Babcock, Shane

Towards an Essentialist Account of Modality

Neil Williams

Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, Niagara University

Earle, Robert

Deep Intentional Environmental Value: Toward a Relational Theory

Kenneth Shockley

Visiting Assistant Professor, University of Northern Iowa





Buckman, Christopher

Negative Beauty: Ugliness in Kant’s Theory of Taste

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Lecturer of Philosophy, Iniana University, Kokomo

Duncan, William

The Ontology of Computational Artifacts

Barry Smith

Software Developer, Department of Environmental Genomics & Systems Biology, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; From 2021: College of Medicine, University of Florida.

Hicks, Amanda

Ampliative Inference and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Neil Williams

Assistant Professor, Health Outcomes & Policy, College of Medicine, Institute for Child Health Policy, University of Florida ; From 2021: Senior Professional Staff (ontologist), Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab​.

Rivera Berruz, Stephanie

The Quest for Recognition: The Case of Latin American Philosophy

Jorge J.E. Gracia

Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI

Robinson, Juneko

The Body Politic: An Existential Ontology of Clothing, Conformity and the Politics of Self-Expression   

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Immigration and Asylum Attorney, San Francisco, CA

Sackris, David

Using Modal Terms Epistemically

David Braun

Assistant Professor, Philosophy  Arapahoe Community College Littleton, CO

Taylor, Adam

Four-Dimensionalism and Well-Being

David Hershenov

Lecturer (Full-Time), North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND

Tremblay, Frédéric

Resemblance Realism: A Theory of Universals

Barry Smith

Visiting Lecturer in Philosophy, Sofia University, Bulgaria






Decker, Brock

A Place at the Table: Giving Gustatory Aesthetics its Due

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Executive Chef, Green Bay, WI

Lafrenz, Mark

What is a Work of Art?  Intentions, Definitions and the Ontology of Art

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Lecturer in Philosophy, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI

Potter, Joel

Recollective Pathe: Affectivity and Inquiry in Plato

Jiyuan Yu

Assistant Professor, University of Alaska, Anchorage, AL






Compton, Elizabeth

A Dispositional Account of Aesthetic Properties

Neil Williams & Carolyn Korsmeyer

Adjunct Professor, U St Thomas, St Paul, Minn

Flier, Leonard

Care and Flourishing: A Liberal Neo-Aristotelian Ethic of Care

Kenneth Shockley

Managing Director, Unchurch LLC

Pryba, Russell

Art, Food and Other Cultural Entities: A Pragmatic Metaphysics

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Lecturer, University of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, AZ

Spencer, Mark

Thomistic Hylomorphism and the Phenomenology of Self-Sensing

Jorge J.E. Gracia

Associate Professor, University of St. Thomas, MN

Ullman, Catherine

Cultivating Practical Wisdom in the Restoration  of Cultural Artifacts

Randall Dipert

UB Information Security Analyst, Buffalo, NY






Niswonger, Mark

Life at its Edges: A New Ontological Look at the Persistence Conditions for Organisms

Barry Smith

Adjunct, Brown Mackie College

Palencik, Joseph

Noncognitive Affect: A Study of Mind and Emotion

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Assistant Professor, Indian River State College, Fort Pierce, FL






Seo, Min-Gyu

From Critical Realism to Meta-Reality: Roy Bhaskar’s Philosophical Evolution from West to East

James Lawler

Teaching Professor of General Education, Chung-Ang University, Seoul, South Korea

Hartnett, Ryan

The Essence of Causation

Neil Williams

Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, Villa Maria College, Buffalo, NY

Escobar Plagmann, Andrea

The Metaphysics of Dementia:  The Intersection of Personal Identity and clinical Ethics

David B. Hershenov

Instructor in Philosophy, Erie Community College, City Campus, Buffalo, NY

Ott, Paul

The Politics of the Present: A Relational Theory of the Self as a Basis for Political Theory

Kah-Kyung Cho

Adjunct, Loyola University, Chicago, IL

Chelstrom, Eric

Phenomenology and Subjectivity’s Relation to Others, a Phenomenological Contribution to Collective Intentionality

Kah-Kyung Cho

​Assistant Professor, St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, TX

Halady, Steven

The Reality of Race; Against Racial Eliminativism

Jorge J. E. Gracia

Visiting Assistant Professor, Canisius College; and, Social Worker, Catholic Charities of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY

Smith, Susan

The Hidden Assumption: The Conflation of Nature and Nurture in the Race  Debate

Jorge J.E. Gracia

Lecturer, Cognitive Science Department, Rensselaer

Ruhl Rapaport, Elisa

Emotion by Proxy: Some Ethical Considerations in the Designation of a Health Care Power of Attorney

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Associate Professor and Chair, Molloy College, Long Island, NY






Spear, Andrew

Not by Experience Alone: Toward a Theory of a Priori Justification

James Beebe

Associate Professor, Grand Valley State University, MI

Rosen-Velasquez, Ernesto

The Metaphysics of Latino Identity and its Social and Political Implications

Jorge J.E. Gracia

Associate Professor, University of Dayton, OH

Zeccardi, Joseph

Arate and Taste: Towards a Virtue-Theoretic Aesthetics

Carolyn Korsmeyer

Associate Director, Center for Writing Across the Curriculum, St. Mary’s College, Oakland, CA

Duffy, Leigh

Modal Illusions: Making Sense of the Necessary A Posteriori

James Beebe

Adjunct, Buffalo State College, Buffalo, NY

Silber-Sweeny, Laurel

Interfacing Ethics: The Ethical Relation from Kant to Derrida 

Kah-Kyung Cho


Novotný, Daniel

Beings of Reason: A Study in Scholasticism of the Baroque Era

Jorge J. E. Gracia

Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, University of South Bohemia, Czech Republic

Jang, Misung

Aristotle’s Doctrine of the Mean

Jiyuan Yu

Adjunct faculty, Towson University, MD

Chen, Shi

Practical Necessity in Bernard Williams’s Virtue Ethics

James Lawler

Instructor, Dawson College, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Arima, Hitoshi

Observation, Explanation, and Intuition – Two Arguments

Randall Dipert

​Associate Professor of Moral Philosophy, Yokohama City University Graduate School, Japan






Connolly, Timothy

This Moving Being: The Role of Change in Plato

Jiyuan Yu

Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Philosophy, East Stroudsburg University, PA

Petruzella, Gerol

External Goods from Socrates to the Stoics

Jiyuan Yu

Adjunct, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, North Adams, MA

D’Onofrio, Sandro

Aquinas as Representationalist: The Ontology of the Species Intelligibilis

Jorge J. E. Gracia

Assistant Professor, Department of Humanities, and, Member, Riva-Agüero Institute of the PUCP

Paul Symington The Number and Identity of the Aristotelian Categories Jorge J. E. Gracia Dean, School of Theology & Philosophy, Professor of Philosophy, Franciscan University of Steubenville​