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Research in Philosophy, Justice and Children's Rights

Newton International Fellow of the British Academy
Derby Fellow - University of Liverpool (School of Law and Social Justice)

Photo - Nicolas Brando (Round Large).png


I am a PHILOSOPHER by training. I work on ETHICS, MORAL and POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY. I ask myself questions such as 'what distinguishes right from wrong?' 'what makes humans free or dominated?' and 'who has authority to govern over me and my choices?'

I am particularly interested in the plights of CHILDHOOD. Having been legally a child for almost two decades, I have experienced first hand the benefits and harms of this condition. I've done some research on pedagogy and educational theory, but my focus lately is on children themselves. I like to ask myself 'what is a child?', 'what justifies treating a person as a child?', or 'why should we distinguish children from adults?' 

I was born and reared in Bogotá, I did my studies in Barcelona, I got my PhD in Belgium, later worked in Belfast (lots of B's for some strange coincidence) with a Newton International Fellowship of the British Academy at the Centre for Children's Rights (Queen's University Belfast). I am currently a Derby Fellow at the School of Law and Social Justice (University of Liverpool).


Brando, N. (2023). ‘Is Child Disenfranchisement Justified?’ Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 26(5): 635-657.

What is particular about childhood that justifies the restriction of their right to vote? How can democratic systems legitimise the exclusion of a section of their citizenry? This article provides a critical analysis of the principles that ground child disenfranchisement, and of the allocative mechanisms proposed for restricting the right to vote.

Brando, N. (forthcoming). ‘The Moral Relevance of Social Categories: Analysing the Case of Childhood.’ European Journal of Philosophy

What makes the categorisation of a human collective morally relevant? How does the categorisation of individuals into groups affect their social status and treatment? This article provides an account of the moral relevance of social categories and assesses the status of “childhood” within this framework.

Brando, N. and Schweiger, G. (eds.) (2019). Philosophy and Child Poverty. Dordrecht: Springer.

This book offers a broad and diverse reflection of the ways in which child poverty could be conceptualised, and the ways in which it is intertwined with childhood as a specific social condition. Furthermore, the responsibilities towards children and the possible mechanisms required for dealing with this condition will be analysed and clarified. 

Hart, C.S. and Brando, N. (2018). ‘A capability approach to children's well‐being, agency and participatory rights in education.’ European Journal of Education 53 (3): 292-309.

This article applies a capability approach to examine how children's agency, well‐being and participation rights can be developed and supported in educational settings. We aim to broaden the evaluative space for assessing what constitutes quality in children's education. We conclude with some reflections on implications for policy and practice going forward.

I love to take pictures on my free time. These are some of the ones I've taken over the years...

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