Paula Casal

Paula Casal

Universitat Pompeu Fabra


Casal works at UPF's Law Department, having held positions at Reading University (2004-8) and Keele University (1996-2004). She was also Fellow in Ethics at Harvard University (1999-2000), Keele Junior Research Fellow, also at Harvard (2000-1), Hoover Fellow at Université Catholique de Louvain (2001-02), Leverhulme Research Fellow at the University of Oxford (2002-4) and Christopher Family Fellow at Stanford University (2018). Her work has appeared in journals like Ethics, Economics and Philosophy, Journal of Medical Ethics, Journal of Moral PhilosophyJournal of Political Philosophy, Hypatia, Political Studies and Utilitas. She is Associate Editor of Politics, Philosophy & Economics, and LEAP, President of the Great Ape Project-Spain, Academics Stand Against Poverty-Spain, and co-director of the UPF Center for Animal Ethics.

Research interests

My main field is distributive justice, a part of political philosophy that examines how social institutions should distribute benefits and burdens. This requires assessing general principles (including equality, priority, and sufficiency) as well as policy responses (such as taxation and public spending proposals) to specific problems like gender inequality, local and global poverty or climate change. I have written on some particular problems, such as those involving gender, nonhuman animals, personhood, or the distinction between natural and social inequality from a biologically-informed perspective. I have also written about how to distribute the costs of child-rearing, sea-access for landlocked states, the moral limits on religious and cultural accommodation, xenotransplantation and the distinction medical ethicists draw between therapy and enhancement.


Selected publications

Casal P & Williams A 2019, ‘Human iPSC-Chimera Xenotransplantation and the Non-Identity Problem‘, Journal of Clinical Medicine 8 (1), pp 95.

Casal P 2019 ‘Nothing We Do is Outside the Context of Our Biology. Interview with Robert Sapolsky‘, Mètode 101(2), pp 32-39.

Selected research activities

‘Sea Access and Collective Responsibility’, ASAP Conference on Collective Responsibility, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, 14/3;
‘Conservative and Conservationist Sufficiency’, Conference on New Directions in Political Philosophy, University of California at San Diego, 24/5;
‘Conservationist Sufficiency’ and ‘Whaling, Bullfighting and the Conditional Value of Tradition’, Workshop on Casal’s work, Utrecht University, 21/6;
‘Intergenerational Justice, Climate and Sufficiency’, Conference on Climate Change’s Ethical Challenges, Javeriana University, Bogotá, 6/8. ‘Legal Personhood for Animals’, expert opinion on animal Habeas Corpus, Colombia’s Constitutional Court, Bogotá, 8/8;
‘Equality’, Javeriana University, 8/8;
‘Intergenerational Justice and Climate Change’, Climate Conference, EAFIT University, Medellín, ‘What Can Academics Do Against Poverty?’, Launch of ASAP-Colombia, EAFIT, 16/8;
‘Gender Equality Today’, EAFIT, 13/8;
“Whaling and Bullfighting”, Conference on Animals and Social Welfare, Duke University. Nov 1-2.’Why Inequality Matters’, Catalunya-Europa Foundation, 4/12; ‘Distributive Justice and Female Longevity’, Barcelona Institute of Analytical Philosophy,18/12.

Summer course: ‘Distributive Justice’, EAFIT.

Theses supervised:
E Santos Trevisani’s MA, A Defense of Prisoner’s Voting Rights;
V Lund’s MA,Working Hours and the Basic Structure;
A Lorente’s MA, Self-Driven Cars;
SM Krumpelman’s MA, Educational Basic Income.

Conferences organized:
Collective Responsibility, Launch of ASAP-Nepal, Kathmandu;
A Better Future for Our Planet. The International Panel on Social Progress,
Academics Stand Against Poverty & Planetary Wellbeing: A Triple Encounter, UPF 17/6.