Paul Thompson

Paul Thompson

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Professor & W. K. Kellogg Chair in Agricultural, Food and Community Ethics
Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics



Ph.D., State University of New York at Stony Brook
M.A., State University of New York at Stony Brook
B.A., Emory University

Publications on Google Scholar

Paul Thompson came to Michigan State in 2003 to assume tenure track positions in the Philosophy Department, with partial appointments in the Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics, and Community Sustainability Departments. He also became the W.K. Kellogg Chair in Agricultural Food, and Community Ethics at MSU.

Previously he held positions as Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Director, Center for Food Animal Productivity and Well-Being, at Purdue University, and prior to that positions as Professor of Philosophy and Agricultural Economics and Director, Center for Science and Technology Policy and Ethics, at Texas A&M University.

Paul Thompson’s research has centered on ethical and philosophical questions associated with agriculture and food, and especially concerning the guidance and development of agricultural technoscience. This research has led him to undertake a series of projects on the application of recombinant DNA techniques to agricultural crops and food animals. His new work focuses on nanotechnology in the agrifood system. See also Paul’s Blog at Thornapple CSA

Research and Outreach Interests

  • American pragmatist approaches in practical ethics
  • Environmental ethics
  • Risks and ethics of agricultural and food biotechnology
  • Science policy
  • Philosophy of technology
  • Philosophy of economics

Teaching Experience