Research Interests

I am a reader in Artificial Intelligence and head of the RAP (Reasoning and Planning Group) King's College London. My main research and teaching interests are in the areas of:

  • Logic, Argumentation and Dialogue

  • Philosophy and Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

    Current work involves research on non-monotonic logics, argumentation theory and dialectical models of reasoning that enable distributed reasoning amongst multiple agents (i.e., argumentation based dialogue). In particular I have worked on the ASPIC+ model of logic-based argumentation, dialectical models of logic-based reasoning that are provably rational under resource bounds, and models of logic-based argumentation that accommodate reasoning about preferences and values. The latter work was awarded Winner of the AIJ 2014 Prominent Paper Award.

    More recently, my research has focussed on the ethics of AI, and development of the above models of dialectical reasoning so as to integrate human and artificial agent reasoning through dialogue. The long term aim is to not only ensure that the AI machines of the future make decisions that are aligned with human values and preferences, but moreover, that future AIs may enhance our moral understanding and calculations when we are faced with challenging ethical dilemmas.

    Previous research interests lie in the areas of default reasoning, belief revision, non-monotonic logics, modal logics, and their applications in artificial intelligence.

    Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.


  • I currently teach a postgraduate module on The Philosophy and Ethics of Artificial Intelligence. See here for a list of topics and issues covered in the module.

  • Information for Project Students

  • A selection of courses given to PhD students and postdoctoral researchers:

    Argument, Dialectic and Dialogue. Presentation to PhD students at the Department of Philosophy, Milan, on dialectical characterisations of logical reasoning.

    EASS'14 Summer School Slides for Argumentation Tutorial.

    Tutorial on Argumentation for Reasoning and Communication at the First ESSENCE Autumn School on Evolving Semantic Systems . Available on youtube : Part1 and Part2.

    Recent Events and Activities

  • I am currently a co-investigator on an EPSRC funded project CONSULT that aims at using argumentation based technologies to support self-management of patients.

  • Podcast interview on ethical issues relating to AI, including surveillance capitalism, superintelligence, and the ethics of AIs designed to invite human ascription of consciousness to machines. (Podcast #16) .

  • I contributed to a panel discussion on the ethics of AI, broadcast as a Guardian podcast (Chips with Everything 22/6/18)..

  • I was program chair of the biennial International Conference on Computational Models of Argument, held at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Warsaw in September 2018 COMMA 2018..

  • I have contributed monthly columns on `What's hot in argumentation' to a monthly online philosophy gazette called The Reasoner.. The June 2017 issue contains an overview of argumentation that sets the scene for future columns.

  • I was until April 2018, chair of the European Association for Multi-Agent Systems.

  • To plug in or plug out? That is the question. Presentation at the 2016 Pint of Science Festival, on the dangers of AI and why we need machines to reason and debate about moral and ethical issues to help ensure dangers are averted.

  • I was co-organiser of a recent workshop entitled Computers and Minds held in Edinburgh on 21 November 2014. The workshop was co-organised with the Institute of Philosophy, under the aegis of the Human Mind Project, and brought together academics working on state of the art of research at the interface of philosophy of mind, computational neuroscience, robotics and artificial intelligence.

  • Interviewed for the Radio 4 series Something Understood on the topic of artificial souls

    Recent Publications:

  • M. D'Agostino and S. Modgil. A Fully Rational Account of Structured Argumentation Under Resource Bounds. In: 29th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI'20), 1841-1847, 2020.

  • D. Grossi and S.Modgil On the Graded Acceptability of Arguments in Abstract and Instantiated Argumentation. In: Artificial Intelligence (AIJ), (275), 138-173, 2019.

  • M. D'Agostino, D. Gabbay and S.Modgil Normality, non-contamination and logical depth in classical natural deduction. In: Studia Logica, DOI, February, 2019.

  • M. D'Agostino and S.Modgil Classical Logic, Argument and Dialectic. In Artificial Intelligence (AIJ). 262, 15 - 51, 2018.

    Full Publication List (by research area):

  • Logic Argument and Dialogue.
  • Logic and Proof Theory.
  • Philosophy, Ethics and Norms in AI.
  • AI in Law.
  • AI in Medicine.