Home > Cheyney Ryan

Our people

Cheyney Ryan

Senior Research Fellow

Cheyney Ryan was a fellow of Oxford Institute for Ethics, Law and Armed Conflict (ELAC) from 2010-2023, and before that was a fellow of the Oxford Changing Character of War Program. He was Director of ELAC’s human rights programs, which included workshops on humanitarian aid, nuclear weapons, and other issues. He is  co-chair of the Oxford Consortium for Human Rights, which is conducted human rights workshops in Oxford, New York, Geneva, and other locations in recent years. He is a member of Merton College. For many years he taught at the University of Oregon as a professor of philosophy and professor of law, where he co-founded the Program in Conflict Resolution. He has been a Global Ethics Fellow and Senior Fellow, Carnegie Council for Ethics and International Affairs, and Liberal Arts Fellow, Harvard Law School. He has also taught at Northwestern University and Boston University.

Dr Ryan’s recent work has focused on pacifism, nonviolence, and the critique of just war theory. He is especially interested in questions of personal responsibility and war and has written widely on this topic. His most recent book is War, Sacrifice, and Personal Responsibility: The Chickenhawk Syndrome (Roman and Littlefield). Some of his recent articles include: “The Dilemma of the Cosmopolitan Soldier,” in Post-Heroic Warfare, ed. by Sybelle Scheipers (Palgrave MacMillan), “The Pacifist Critique of Just War Theory”, in Andrew Fiala, ed. The Routledge Handbook of Pacifism and Nonviolence, “Bearers of Hope: On the Paradox of Non-Violent Action”, in The Ethics of Soft War, ed. by Michael Gross and Tami Meisels (Cambridge University Press), and “The Hard Hand of War”, Law and Philosophy (2017). He received the Joseph J. Blau Prize from the Society for Advancement of American Philosophy for significant contributions to the history of American philosophy.

Dr Ryan has been named one of leading scholars “on the frontier of peace and conflict studies” by the Washington Post and has received numerous awards for human rights activism, including the Grassroots Award from the National Funding Exchange, the Annual Human Rights Award from the Oregon Human Rights Coalition, and the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the National Jewish Federation.

Please note that Dr Ryan’s email address is now: cryan@oxfordconsortium.org

His personal website can be found at: https://www.cheyneyryan.com/