Luke Semrau

Luke Semrau is a Junior Faculty Fellow with the Georgetown Institute for the Study of Markets and Ethics. A graduate of Vanderbilt University (PhD Philosophy 2016), and Tufts (MA Philosophy 2011), Luke's research interest span all areas of moral philosophy, including normative theory, meta-ethics, and applied ethics. He's currently pursuing research into the ethics of commodification, particularly the moral status of kidney markets. He's also coauthoring a book on contemporary debates about Utilitarianism. 


Luke's work appears, among other places, in Journal of the American Philosophical Association, Public Affairs Quarterly, and Bioethics. He has coauthored papers, among other places, in Australasian Journal of PhilosophyJournal of Applied Philosophy, and Ethical Theory and Moral Practice


Luke teaches a course titled "Social Responsibilities of Business" at Georgetown's McDonough School of Business. 

Published Works


(with Andrew T. Forcehimes) Utilitarianism: A Guide to the Arguments (Hackett, forthcoming).



"Non-Compliance Shouldn’t Be Better," co-authored with Andrew T. Forcehimes, Australasian Journal of Philosophy (forthcoming).

"Organ Donor or Gratuitous Moral Failure? Pick One," Think (forthcoming).

"A Mistake in the Commodification Debate," Journal of the American Philosophical Association, 2017 3(3): 354-371.

"Reassessing Likely Harms to Vendors in Regulated Kidney Markets," Journal of Medicine & Philosophy, 2017 42: 634-652. With a reply by Julian Koplin.

"Beneficence: Does Agglomeration Matter?" co-authored with Andrew T. Forcehimes, Journal of Applied Philosophy, 2017 34(4).

"Misplaced Paternalism and Other Mistakes in the Debate Over Kidney Sales," Bioethics, 2017 31(3): 190-198.


"Well-Being: Reality's Role," co-authored with Andrew T. Forcehimes, Journal of the American Philosophical Association, 2016 2(3): 456-468.


"The Difference We Make: A Reply to Pinkert," co-authored with Andrew T. Forcehimes, Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy. September 2015.

"The Best Argument Against Kidney Sales Fails," Journal of Medical Ethics, 2015 41(6): 443-446. Editors' Choice
Reprinted in Exploring Moral Problems: An Introductory Anthology, edited by Steven M. Cahn and Andrew T. Forcehimes (Oxford University Press, In Press).

"Your Mother Doesn't Love You For Who You Are," Think, 2015 14(29): 95-97.


"Kidneys Save Lives. Markets Would Probably Help," Public Affairs Quarterly, 2014 28(1): 71-95.