Dr Alasdair CochraneA Cochrane

Senior Lecturer in Political Theory

Contact Details
Email: a.cochrane@sheffield.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)114 222 1650
Fax: +44 (0)114 222 1717
Room: 2.01, Elmfield Building


Alasdair Cochrane received a First Class BA in Politics from the University of Sheffield in 2000. He then went on to complete an MSc in Political Theory, a PGCHE and his PhD at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He was then Fellow in Human Rights and then Lecturer in Human Rights at the LSE.

Alasdair rejoined the Department of Politics at the University of Sheffield as Lecturer in Political Theory in January 2012.

Alasdair Cochrane’s main research interests include: contemporary political theory, rights theory, human rights, environmental ethics, animal ethics and bioethics.

Key Professional Activities

  • Co-Director of ShARC (Sheffield Animals Studies Research Centre)

The modules that I teach in the Department explore some extremely contentious political issues: minority rights; abortion; humanitarian intervention; animal rights; euthanasia; and many more besides! The wonderful thing about studying political theory, in my view, is that it provides individuals with the tools to tackle such difficult topics directly and confidently. As such, in my teaching practice, my primary aim is to help students to develop the skills necessary to do that. I thus build classes around helping students to expose and critically reflect on their preconceptions. And my ultimate objective is to enable students to construct clear and robust arguments in relation to some of the most important topics in modern political life.

Dr Alasdair Cochrane discusses how and why we establish human rights, and what implication this has for the rights of animals.

PhD Supervision

Alasdair Cochrane is currently supervising, and is interested in supervising, PhD projects on a range of issues in contemporary political theory, including: human rights; non-human rights; environmental political theory; and bioethics.


Research interests

  • The Ethics of Imprisonment
  • Cosmopolitan approaches to animal rights.
  • The anthropocentrism of human rights.
  • Global Food Justice

Prizes and Fellowships

  • AHRC / BBC New Generation Thinker 2014
  • Leverhulme Research Fellowship 2014-15 (for work on ‘Beastly Cosmopolitanism’)


View full list of publications

Key Publications

- Books

- Articles

Recent Invited Papers and Keynote Lectures

  • “Animal Rights without Liberation”, University of Hamburg
  • “Human Rights for Animals (And Animal Rights for Humans)”, University of Melbourne
  • “Zoopolis: Response to Will; Kymlicka and Sue Donaldson”, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona

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