Centre for Idealism and the New Liberalism

Faculty of Business, Law and Politics
Professor Colin Tyler, Professor Emeritus James Connelly and Dr Christopher Fear
Group leaders

The Challenge

The Centre for Idealism and the New Liberalism was founded in 2007 by James Connelly and Colin Tyler, to provide a much-needed global focal point for the burgeoning research into the philosophy and practice of British idealism and New Liberalism. It also sought to address a series of questions relating to the theoretical and practical commitments and influences of these movements, as well as to their contemporary relevance.

The Approach

Centre for Idealism and the New Liberalism (CINL) research adopts a number of different approaches. Much of its work uses methods of contextualist intellectual history, analytic history of philosophy, or some combination of the two methods. CINL members see these approaches as complementary. Members also apply the principles of idealist and New Liberal thought to contemporary issues, including social economics, social justice, environmentalism, punishment, international relations and multi/interculturalism.



  • To act as a focal point for global research into the late-nineteenth and twentieth-century idealism, both as a historical movement and a continuing contemporary resource
  • To raise scholarly understanding of the philosophy and practice of British idealism and the New Liberalism
  • To trace the influences that British idealism and the New Liberalism exerted in other countries and fields of life
  • To explore ways in which British idealist and New Liberal thought and practice can be applied to contemporary issues in philosophy and society
  • To develop the next generation of idealist and New Liberal scholars, by nurturing doctoral students and working with visiting scholars

Previous Events

Watch previous events hosted by the School of Politics and International Studies

Read more

Derwent Building at Hull University Business School


Outputs and publications

May Sinclair Critical Edition (Edinburgh University Press) - Connelly and Tyler are co-editors with Dr Rebecca Bowler (Keele University) and Dr Claire Drewery (Sheffield Hallam University) working on A Defence of Idealism (1917) (ed. Tyler and Drewery) and The New Idealism (1919) “(ed. Connelly and Bowler).

James Connelly is currently writing a major new biography of Robin George Collingwood (1889-1943), drawing on a wealth of new material including unpublished letters, manuscripts and notes.

Full list of publications

Research Students

Matthew Jones

Carl Schmitt: Terrorism as a “state of exception”

Tyler and Fear

Some previous research students

Dr James Pearce

Can “intrinsic” republican notions of the civic condition be made compatible with deep diversity?

Tyler and Connelly

Dr Adrian Paylor

Reason and Romanticism in Green and Collingwood’s Conceptions of “Nature”

Connelly and Tyler

Dr Sean Magee

Justice and Disadvantage

Connelly and Tyler

Dr Ashley Roden-Bow

The Political Philosophy of Personalism

Connelly and Tyler

Dr Chor-yung Cheung

Quest for Civil Order: Politics, rules and individuality

O’Sullivan and Tyler