Project Description

Home / Members / Graduate Students / Varun Ravikumar


  • Philosophy of Mind

  • Philosophy of Embodied Cognitive Science

  • Philosophy of Social Science


  • Rotman Institute of Philosophy
    Western University
    Western Interdisciplinary Research Building, 7148
    London, Ontario, Canada
    N6A 3K7



Doctoral Student; 
Department of Philosophy, Western University

I am currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Philosophy at Western University (UWO), Canada. I am also a member of the Eclectic Minds Research Group (EMRG Lab) at the Rotman Institute of Philosophy at UWO. Prior to my doctoral studies, I completed my M.A in Philosophy from Northern Illinois University, U.S.A, and my M.Eng. in Engineering Mechanics from The Pennsylvania State University, U.S.A. I received my B.Tech. in Mechanical Engineering from Shiv Nadar University, India, in 2015.

I primarily work in the philosophy of embodied cognitive and social sciences, philosophy of mind, and social epistemology, with a focus on topics ranging from social cognition and social interaction to collective action. I approach these topics through a Bourdieusian-Gibsonian lens, and my dissertation focuses on developing this sociopsychological lens from a pragmatist perspective. I am also interested in topics in the philosophy of science, such as scientific practice, interdisciplinarity, and sociology of science, topics in the philosophy of technology, such as human-digital interactions, and in practical issues on sustainability. With respect to the latter, I helped develop and coordinate UWO’s Thinking Globally, Acting Locally innovative pilot program, which supported student-led research projects that tackled sustainability issues in the local London (Ontario) community.

In my spare time, I play a variety of sports – badminton, cricket, football, and table-tennis – and reflect upon folk Hindu and Buddhist philosophy. I also enjoy spending time with my family.

Ravikumar, V. (forthcoming). A Bourdieusian response to Zahavi. In Australasian Philosophical Review.

Ravikumar, V., Bowen, J., & Anderson, M. L. (2023). A more ecological perspective on human-robot interactions. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 46, e42.


Ravikumar, V., Yi, N., Vepachedu, V., & Cheng, H. (2017). Transfer Printing for Cyber-Manufacturing Systems. In: Jeschke, S., Brecher, C., Song, H., Rawat, D. (eds) Industrial Internet of Things. Springer Series in Wireless Technology. Springer, Cham.


(Last updated: Dec 2023)

As a Co-Instructor/Instructor

Philosophy of Social Science (Co-Instructor). Department of Philosophy. Western University. (Winter 2023)

Teaching Assistant Training Program (Instructor). Centre for Teaching and Learning. Western University. (Summer 2021 – Summer 2022).

As a Graduate Teaching Assistant (in philosophy)

Digital Ethics [Grader]. Western University. (Fall 2023, Winter 2022, Fall 2019)

Understanding Science [Tutorial Leader & Grader]. Western University. (Fall 2022)

Big Ideas [Tutorial Leader & Grader]. Western University. (Fall 2021)

Introduction to Philosophy [Tutorial Leader & Grader]. Western University. (Fall 2020 – Winter 2021)

PhilPapers [Assistant Editor]. Centre for Digital Philosophy. Western University. (Winter 2020)

Modern Philosophy [Grader & Workshop Leader]. Northern Illinois University. (Spring 2019)

Contemporary Issues in Ethics [Grader & Workshop Leader]. Northern Illinois University. )Fall 2018)

Ethical Decisions –  Be Your Own Judge! [Workshop Leader]. Summer Institute for the Gifted. University of Chicago. (Summer 2018)


Writing Tutor. University Writing Center. Northern Illinois University. (Fall 2017 – Spring 2018)

(Last updated: December 2023)

Graduate Thesis Research Award. Western University. CAD 1,000. (2023)

Graduate Fellowship. Western University. CAD 13,000. (2020–23)

MITACS Training Research Fellowship. Western University. CAD 6,000. (2021)

Rotman Doctoral Entrance Scholarship. Western University. CAD 10,000. (2019)

NUS-India Research Award. National University of Singapore. SGD 1,200. (2014)

SNU Merit Entrance Scholarship. Shiv Nadar University. INR 800,000. (2011–15)

(Last updated: December 2023)

Conference presentations

“Habitus and affordance: Socializing ecological psychology.” 1st Annual Web Conference of the International Society for the Philosophy of the Sciences of the Mind. (December 2023)

“Philosophy of embodied cognitive science: On habitus and habit.” Copenhagen Summer School in Phenomenology and Philosophy of Mind 2023. Copenhagen, Denmark. (August 2023)

“Habitus and affordance: Towards a radical embodied cognitive social science.” Annual Meeting of The Canadian Philosophical Association 2023. Toronto, Canada. (May 2023)

“What are we? How radical embodied cognitive social science illuminates our nature.” Western Research Forum 2023. London, Canada. (March 2023)


Conference organization

Thinking Globally, Acting Locally Research Forum. Western University. (June 2023)

Rotman Institute Graduate Student Conference. Western University. (May 2021)

Philosophy of Logic, Math, and Physics Graduate Student Conference. Western University. (Cancelled due to COVID–19).

(Last updated: December 2023)

Service to profession

Member. Graduate Student Council. American Philosophical Association. 2021–2023.

University service (most recent)

Chair. International Graduate Student Issues Committee. Society of Graduate Students. Western University. (2021–22)

Chief Steward, Arts & Humanities. Public Service Alliance of Canada Local 610. Western University. (2021–22).

Elected Member. Senate Committee for University Planning. Western University. (2020–21)

Councilor. Society of Graduate Students. Western University. (2020–21)

(Last updated: December 2023)