Ross Pain

Ross Pain

Position: Current PhD Student

School: School of Philosophy


Location: HC Coombs Building, Rm 2201

I am originally from Margaret River, Western Australia, but moved to Melbourne to pursue a tertiary education. Before coming to the ANU I completed an undergraduate degree majoring in archaeology and philosophy, an honours degree in philosophy, and a master’s degree in philosophy, all at La Trobe University.

I commenced my PhD in July 2017. I am primarily interested in the evolution of cognition. My project addresses theoretical issues in cognitive archaeology, particularly the relationship between material culture and cognitive evolution. I am also interested in using cognitive models to analyse the archaeological record. My supervisors are Kim Sterelny, Peter Hiscock (Archaeology – USyd), Daniel Stoljar, Frank Jackson and Colin Klein.

More broadly, I am interested in philosophy of cognitive science, philosophy of biology, and philosophy of mind. I also have an interest in anti-realist approaches to metaphysics. In my MA thesis I defended a deflationary account of abstract objects, inspired by the work of Rudolf Carnap and Wilfrid Sellars.  

Alongside my academic interests, I have pursued a career in quality management and risk analysis. I have worked for a number of large companies in the energy and resource sector, including Newcrest Mining and Energy Australia. In 2014 I developed a conscience and moved to the community sector, where I preformed similar roles for the Australian Red Cross Blood Service and the Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation.

Outside of work, I like motorbikes, Geelong Football Club, travel (especially to India), live music and Korean food.

  • Philosophy of cognitive science
  • Philosophy of biology
  • Philosophy of archaeology
  • Metaontology
  • History of analytic philosophy (esp. Carnap and Sellars)

ANU CASS Workshop Grant (with Colin Klein): AUD: $ 2,250

ANU CPS Workshop Grant (with Colin Klein): AUD $ 15,000

ANU CASS Graduate Research Activity Grant (with Alan Hajek): AUD $ 6,000

Australian National University Research Scholarship: AUD $ 26,682 per annum over 3 years

La Trobe University Travel Grant: AUD $1000

Australian Postgraduate Award: AUD $24,254 per annum over 2 years

2015 - Shortlisted for the AAP conference postgraduate prize

2011 - David Hume Philosophy Prize (for honours thesis)

Australasian Association of Philosophy

Australasian Society for Cognitive Science

Australasian Society for Philosophy and Psychology

PHIL1005: Logic and Critical Thinking

Updated:  24 January 2019/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications