Daniel Little, Ph.D.

Professor of Philosophy
Daniel Little
College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters
Honors Program

Teaching Areas:


Biography and Education

Daniel Little, Ph.D., professor of philosophy. Little served as chancellor of the campus from 2000 to 2018. He received his A.B. in philosophy and B.S. in mathematics from the University of Illinois and his Ph.D. in philosophy from Harvard University in 1977. He also serves as professor of sociology at UM-Ann Arbor. Prior to coming to UM-Dearborn he taught at Colgate University, Wellesley College, and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, and he served as vice president for academic affairs and professor of philosophy at Bucknell University. During 1989-91 Little was a visiting scholar at the Harvard University Center for International Affairs.


Professor Little’s research interests include the philosophy and methodology of the social sciences, social causation and mechanisms, social and political philosophy, and China studies. He also has a sustained interest in the organizational causes of technology failures. Little has published more than 50 articles and book chapters in academic publications, and has presented more than 100 conference papers. In addition Little has published nine sole-authored books, including most recently Confronting Evil in History (Cambridge UP, 2022), A New Social Ontology of Government (Palgrave, 2020), New Directions in the Philosophy of Social Science (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016), and New Contributions to the Philosophy of History (Springer, 2010). Recent articles include “Les limites de la théorie du choix rationnel” in Les défis du collectif, Aurélien Allouche and Raphaël Künstler, eds. (2022); “The three analytic disciplines” in Research Handbook on Analytical Sociology, Gianluca Manzo, ed. (2021); “Organizations as actors: Microfoundations of organizational intentionality,” Philosophy of the Social Sciences (2021); and “Are organizations adaptive?” in Social Functions: Their metaphysics, explanatory power, and normative dimension, Rebekka Hufendiek, Daniel James, and Raphael van Riel, eds. (2020). Little has been invited to lecture on topics in the philosophy of social science in Europe, China, India, and the United States.

Teaching Areas

Philosophy of social science; Sociology of technology failure


A.B., B.S. University of Illinois, Ph.D. Harvard University