Samuel is a political science Ph.D. student. Before coming to UNC, Sam completed a Master of Arts in philosophy at Bowling Green State University. There, he focused on political philosophy and worked as a graduate assistant for the Philosophy, Politics, Economics, and Law program.
Samuel’s research interests sit at the intersection of political theory, political economy, and civil society. He pays particular attention to how institutions are arranged to help individuals pursue various conceptions of the good life, and how this relates to questions of self-governance. Through coursework in philosophy during my master’s work, Sam became fascinated with three nested questions: 1) How can individuals best pursue their various conceptions of the good life? Given that individuals with similar visions of the good life will coordinate to pursue that life together, 2) which institutional arrangements are most conducive to their good life? And, 3) operating in a liberal, market-oriented society, how can these oft ‘illiberal’ institutions best interact? Those three questions orient his reading and study of the history of political thought and the history of economic thought.
Beyond research, Sam devotes time to engaging others in music, poetry, and the philosophy of religion. He is an avid listener of funk, jazz, bluegrass, and classical music, and an enthusiastic jogger.