Dr. Lucian Ionel

Dr. Lucian Ionel

Academic Staff

Practical Philosophy
Geisteswissenschaftliches Zentrum
Beethovenstraße 15, Room H2 1.05
04107 Leipzig

Phone: +49 341 97-35802
Fax: +49 341 97-35849


Lucian Ionel is a research fellow at the Leipzig University since 2023. He was a fellow at the Centre for Advanced Studies in the Humanities "Human Abilities" in Berlin (2021-2022), a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Pittsburgh as a DFG fellow (2019-2021), and a member in the DFG Excellence Cluster "BrainLinks-BrainTools" (2017-2018). He received his doctorate from the University of Freiburg, in cotutelle with the University of Strasbourg (November 2017). His dissertation, “Sinn und Begriff: Negativität bei Hegel und Heidegger," was published by De Gruyter in 2020. His research interests include the philosophy of mind, anthropology, action theory, phenomenology and ontology. The classical authors he has primarily engaged with are Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, and Heidegger.

Professional career

  • since 04/2023
    Research Fellow at the Institute for Philosophy of Leipzig University
  • 04/2022 - 09/2022
    Lectureship at the University of Freiburg
  • 10/2021 - 03/2022
    DFG Research Fellow at the Human Abilities Centre for Advanced Studies in Humanities, Free University of Berlin
  • 06/2019 - 09/2021
    DFG Postdoctoral Visiting Scholar at the Department of Philosophy, University of Pittsburgh
  • 01/2019 - 05/2019
    Research Assistant at the Chair for Contemporary Philosophy and Philosophy of Technology, University of Freiburg
  • 05/2017 - 12/2018
    Research Fellow in the DFG Excellence Cluster BrainLinks-BrainTools. Research Group Norms & Nature, University of Freiburg


  • 10/2013 - 11/2017
    PhD (summa cum laude) at the University of Freiburg Joint Doctoral Degree from the University of Strasbourg
  • 09/2015 - 03/2016
    Doctoral Research at the University of Strasbourg
  • 10/2010 - 09/2012
    Master of Arts in Philosophy (summa), University of Freiburg
  • 10/2008 - 09/2009
    Erasmus Grant, University of Freiburg
  • 10/2007 - 09/2010
    Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy (summa), University of Iasi

Lucian Ionel's research focuses on how we understand the sources and the development of our rational capacities. The concept of spontaneity is at the center of his work.

The DFG research project Lucian Ionel carried out at the Department of Philosophy at the University Pittsburg from 2019 to 2021 and continued at the Human Abilities Centre in Berlin until 2022, dealt with the question of how we acquire rational capacities naturally without possessing them by nature.

His doctoral research explored the relation between our conceptual capacities and our experience of meaning. It brought Hegel and Heidegger into a conversation about the negativity of concepts, i.e., how concepts render the world intelligible by concealing the source of its intelligibility. The resulting monograph was published by De Gruyter in 2020 under the title Sinn und Begriff: Negativität bei Hegel und Heidegger.

Lucian Ionel has a research background in German Idealism, phenomenology and hermeneutics, and Neo-Aristotelianism. His interests lie in the philosophy of mind, action theory, ontology, and anthropology. He has studied, taught and written on a variety of authors and traditions, including Aristotle, Spinoza, Kant, Hegel, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, Sellars, and Anscombe.

  • The Nature of Human Capacities
    Ionel, Lucian
    Duration: 06/2019 – 03/2022
    Funded by: DFG Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
    Involved organisational units of Leipzig University: Philosophie mit Schwerpunkt Praktische Philosophie
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more projects

more publications

  • Elizabeth Anscombe's Action Theory

    Seminar, Summer Semester 2023.