Sakura Yahata

My research thema is Schelling’s philosophy of art by examining his philosophical theory and his concrete experience of artworks. My dissertation is The Imagination in the Philosophy of Art by Schelling published as a Book in Japanese in 2017. The latest paper is ‘Schelling und Correggio’ in Schelling Studien, Bd.9, 2022. In addition, I am doing research on contemporary art by focusing on the concepts of landscape and nature in recent years. I also use the methods of action research and philosophical dialogue in my educational practice activities.

Project Assistant Professor

Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, Center for Evolving Humanities,

The University of Tokyo 

Stefanie Voigt

Stefanie Voigt studied art history and philosophy at Otto-Friedrich University, Bamberg, Germany. At the same time, she worked as painter and Baroque harp player. Also in Bamberg, she received her PhD in psychology with a work on the “secret of the beautiful”. At the University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany, she did her “Habilitation” (second major thesis) with a study on the concept of the sublime. Both theses were awarded prizes for academic excellence.

She teaches at several universities (also of applied science), including the Centre of Excellence for Total Productive Management (CETPM) in Herrieden, Germany, is an Adjunct Professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland and a member of the Nuremberg Institute of Sustainability, and has founded the Business Aesthetics Academy which is dedicated to the mediation of values through an interdisciplinary theory of aesthetics.

Stefanie Voigt’s work is centered in theory and practice on importance of aesthetics for the understanding of consciousness, for a meaningful human life and for sustainable processes in society and economy.

For more information (in German) and a bibliography, link here.

Felix Treutner

I am interested in the genealogy of the (post)modern liberal societies and the development of their specific and unique relationship with nature. I am particularly interested in the role played by the Christian religion in the genesis of this special kind of relationship with nature and to what extent religious thinking and experiences can still have a place in liberal political-philosophical discourse. Therefore, my interest in the WGEA research group focuses on the one hand on the manifestation of this special relationship to nature in the aesthetic experience of (post)modern subjects and on the other hand on the potential eschatological significance of these experiences. By eschatological, I also mean explicitly discourse-opening functions and their significance for the current climate crisis.

Affiliations and academic research

July 2022 to November 2022 | Research assistant at the Research Unit Social economics in the work and job environment at the University of Augsburg

December 2022 to April 2023 | Research associate in course of the research project UMDIA (“UnterbrechungsManagement bei Digital gerahmter InteraktionsArbeit“) at the Research Unit Social economics in the work and job environment at the University of Augsburg

May 2023 to March 2024 | Research associate in course of the research project LeNa (“Leitfaden Nachhaltigkeit”) Shape Value at the “Lehrstuhl” for Christian social ethics at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich in cooperation with the University of Tübingen

Since August 2023 | Member of the NGO FANE (For A New Earth) as a FANE Pioneer

Since November 2023 | Part of the WGEA Research Group

Russell Duvernoy

Russell J. Duvernoy lives with his wife and two children in London, Ontario on lands connected with the London township and Sombra treaties of 1796 and the Dish with One Spoon Wampum. As Associate Professor of Philosophy at King’s University College, he is committed to the practice of philosophy amidst social and ecological dysfunction and conflict. His work draws on process philosophies, Continental philosophy, critical environmental philosophy, and world philosophies to dwell with ethical and spiritual dimensions of climate change and ecological duress. 

He has two current research projects. The first considers conditions of “ecological conversion” as a concept for thinking transformative change. The second investigates ontological intersections between space, place, and time towards understanding multiple forms of memory (collective, nonhuman, and personal). A bridge between both projects is the role of aesthetic and affective experience in dynamics of epistemological and perceptual paradigm transition. 

He has published one monograph study Affect and Attention after Deleuze and Whitehead: Ecological Attunement (Edinburgh University Press 2020) and several articles in a wide range of scholarly journals, including: Comparative and Continental PhilosophyEnvironmental PhilosophyContemporary PragmatismEthics and the Environment, Philosophy Today, and Southern Journal of Philosophy among others.

Stephen Lofts

Steve Lofts is a Professor of Philosophy at King’s University College at Western University, Canada. He graduated from Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium (1996). He was a Humbolt Fellow in Heidelberg (1998–2000) and a Japan Foundation Fellow in Kyoto (2021–2022). He has translated several works by the Marburg Neo-Kantian Ernst Cassirer including his The Logic of the Cultural Sciences (2000), The Warburg Years (1919–1933): Essays on Language, Art, Myth, and Technology (2013), and the three volumes of The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms (2020). Currently, he is working on the connection between Cassirer and various members of the Kyoto School and the philosophy of culture of Nishida Kitarō, Nakai Masakazu, Miki Kiyoshi, Watsuji Tetsurō, and Nishitani Keiji.

Yi Ding

Yi Ding received her doctorate in Aesthetics from the Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, University of Tokyo, and is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in Chinese Philosophy at Kyoto University. She has been a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley (2022) and the Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel (2022, 2023). Her main research interests include the development of modern Chinese aesthetics, comparative studies of Eastern and Western aesthetics, and art theory in general.

Laura Fumagalli (she/her)

I am a doctoral candidate in Philosophy, specialising in Aesthetics. Before starting my PhD (2021), I worked as an assistant in a contemporary art gallery in London, UK and a literary museum in Lecco, Italy. Previously, I completed an M.A. (2020) in Philosophy and Aesthetics and a B.A. (2017) in Philosophy at the Catholic University of Milan, Italy, and an M.Sc. in Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, UK (2018). During the Spring of 2023, I was a visiting doctoral student at the Department of Aesthetics of Uppsala University, Sweden. 

Research Statement

My doctoral dissertation examines issues of environmental aesthetics in an age of environmental crises. In particular, I focus on negative aesthetic qualities (esp. ugliness and disgust) and negative aesthetic experiences of nature, considering that this topic is largely neglected in the literature. To clearly frame this debate, I also address the definition of the object of environmental aesthetics, that is, what exactly we appreciate when we aesthetically appreciate nature.

My main areas of interest are aesthetics, philosophy of art and environmental philosophy and issues connected to the relationship between aesthetic and ethical values. 


Augsburg Universität and LMU München