Dr. Ass.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Schmetkamp, Research Group Leader

Since autumn semester 2019, Susanne Schmetkamp has been leading the research project “Aesthetics and Ethics of Attention” as Research Group Leader. The project is part of an SNF PRIMA Grant. In this five-year project, Schmetkamp and her team examine forms of aesthetic and ethical attention and their context, including different cultures, practices and policies of attention and inattention. Schmetkamp was previously a Research Fellow at the Kulturwissenschaftliches Kolleg Konstanz and at the IKKM Weimar, Senior Research Assistant and Lecturer at the University of Basel, Lecturer at the University of St. Gallen and Visiting Professor in Philosophy at the University of Siegen. She received her PhD in 2008 from the University of Bonn with a thesis on respect and recognition. Her research focuses on attention, empathy, aesthetic experience, film philosophy, feelings, love, respect and tolerance. She also works as an author and moderator and lives with her family in Zurich. Her most recent publication is: Theorien der Empathie – Zur Einführung (Junius 2019), the book article “Aesthetic attention and change of perspectives” and (together with Jason K. Day) the journal article “Psychedelic Expansion of Consciousness: A Phenomenological Study in Terms of Attention

For more, visit her website here.

Dr. Isabel Kaeslin, Postdoc

Since April 2020, Isabel Kaeslin is a Postdoc in the Aesthetics and Ethics of Attention SNSF-PRIMA research project. Her specialty is to combine issues from the philosophy of mind with questions in virtue epistemology, ethics, and social-political theory, with a pragmatist bent.

She received her PhD in 2019 from Columbia University, with a dissertation on how non-cognitive feeling states can play a role in ethics.

In the attention project, she mainly works on the concepts of hermeneutic attention and collective attention.

For more, visit her website here.

Jason K. Day, PhD Student

Jason K. Day joined “Aesthetic and Ethics of Attention” as a PhD researcher in November 2021. His doctoral research is focused on giving a phenomenological account of the nature and role of attention in psychedelic experience. 

Day received his Research MA in Philosophy from Radboud University Nijmegen in August 2021, where he specialised in History of Philosophy. His MA thesis presented a critique of Edmund Husserl’s claims concerning the Buddha’s methods and purpose for investigating consciousness.

Philip Strammer, PhD Student

A PhD Student at the Centre for Ethics in Pardubice, Czech Republic, Philip Strammer has joined the research project “Aesthetics and Ethics of Attention” in September 2022 as part of the scholarship programme for external PhD students offered by the Université de Fribourg. His dissertation, titled “Togetherness as a Moral Notion”, develops an understanding of second-personal relationality and its bearing on moral questions.

Having passed his undergraduate studies in Vienna, Dublin, and Stuttgart, he received his degree from the Universität Stuttgart with a thesis on the theoretical limitations of Neo-Humean neuroaesthetics illustrated by means of Kant’s aesthetic theory.

Apart from Kant’s aesthetics, his research interests lie in Kant’s moral philosophy, the dialogical philosophy of Martin Buber, late-Wittgensteinian moral philosophy (especially the Swansea School) as well as the thought of John McDowell.

Janina Weber, Student assistant

Since February 2022, Janina Weber has been student assistant in the Aesthetics and Ethics of Attention SNSF-PRIMA research project, led by Susanne Schmetkamp.

She began her BA in History and Philosophy in September 2018 and is currently working on her bachelor’s thesis on the philosophy of human-animal relations in World War I.