Melissa Williams

Professor, University of Toronto

Melissa Williams teaches political theory at the University of Toronto, where she is Professor of Political Science and served as Founding Director of the Centre for Ethics from 2005-2010. Her work is focused in contemporary democratic theory with a focus on questions of political representation, structural inequality, and social diversity. She is author of Voice, Trust, and Memory: Marginalized Groups and the Failings of Liberal Representation (Princeton University Press), as well as articles on numerous topics ranging from the history of Western political thought, deliberative democracy, toleration, affirmative action, multiculturalism, and the rights of Indigenous peoples. She was recently Editor of NOMOS , the Yearbook of the American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy; volumes she has edited include Humanitarian Intervention, Toleration and Its Limits, Moral Universalism and Pluralism , and Transitional Justice (New York University Press). Her current research focuses on theories of global justice and global democracy, and of the role of intercultural political theory in a globalizing world. The latter has led to research collaborations focused on Indigenous political thought, and she is leading an international research project on East Asian political thought. Williams continues to serve the Centre for Ethics as director of its “Ethics in Translation” pillar, which aims at enhancing philosophical engagement across culturally diverse traditions of ethics.