Emma Otterski

Tutor in philosophy

  • Philosophy
  • School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences

Contact details



Dugald Stewart Building

3 Charles Street, Edinburgh
Post code


MA (hons), The University of Edinburgh, First Class 

MSt, St Peter's College, University of Oxford, Distinction 

PhD, The University of Edinburgh



Responsibilities & affiliations

2019 - 2020 Chair, Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group 

2019 - 2020 Organiser, Feminist Reading Group 

I am an Associate Fellow of AdvanceHE (formerly the Higher Education Academy)

Undergraduate teaching


PHIL08014 Mind, Matter and Language, 2017

PHIL08005 Philosophy of Science 1, 2018

PHIL08004 Logic 1, 2020, 2021

PHIL08015 Morality and Value, 2022

PHIL08018 Introduction to the History of Philosophy, 2023

PHIL08017 Knowledge and Reality, 2023

Writing tutor, PPLS Skills Centre, 2019 - present 


Outreach tutor:

2020 The Sutton Trust, Edinburgh

2014 The Liverpool to Oxford Initiative, St. Peter's College, University of Oxford 

Research summary

Social cognition, philosophy of cognitive science, feminist and social philosophy 

Current research interests

I'm interested in how we understand and misunderstand each other, and what explains our abilities to do so. This involves thinking about things like the relationship between culture and cognitive mechanisms, the role of social interaction in our (mis)understanding, and our perceptual capacities. My research stems in part from an interest in the notion of 'compensation' and what this involves, particularly in socio-developmental disorders.

Conference details

‘Do we directly perceive others’ emotions?’

  • (upcoming) 30th annual meeting of the European Society for Philosophy and Psychology, Prague, August 2023
  • Active Mind Group, Edinburgh, March 2021

‘Demystifying ‘camouflaging’ in autism’

  • (upcoming) Feminist epistemology symposium, 4th Lisbon International Conference on Philosophy of Science, July 2023
  • The Medicalised Body: Edinburgh Philosophy and Phenomenology Group’s inaugural conference, Edinburgh, May 2023
  • Edinburgh Work in Progress Group, Edinburgh, July 2020
  • Glasgow Philosophy Society, Glasgow, February 2018

‘Social status, power, and mindreading’

  • Active Mind Group, Edinburgh, July 2020

‘Metaphor and the body in the extended/embodied mind debate’

  • Third Annual Lehigh Conference in Philosophy: Metaphors in Use, Pennsylvania, October 2015

‘Extended gender? Persons, selves, and the extended mind’

  • 2nd International Conference in Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies: Situating Cognition – Agency, Affect, and Extension, Warsaw, August 2016


Reply to Prof. Veronique Muñoz Darde’s talk on consent and joint action, Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group’s Spring Workshop, May 2018


2023    Co-organiser, The Medicalised Body: Edinburgh Philosophy and Phenomenology Group’s inaugural conference

2019    Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group's New Enlightenment Lecture with Prof. Lucy O’Brien, 'What are we doing when we laugh at others, and ourselves?'

2020    Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group's Spring Workshop, Feminist Theories of Freedom and Liberation (cancelled due to pandemic)