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This site is ideated, produced and maintained by Dr. Nanhee Byrnes. Dr. Byrnes received her Ph.D. degree from the University of California, San Diego, in philosophy. Her dissertation is entitled "The Best Results Argument for Democracy." Her dissertation examines theories of democracy, offered by contemporary political philosophers, political scientists, and the intellectuals of the past (viz., Aristotle, John Locke, J.S. Mill and Tocqueville), and argues that the common sense view of the intellectuals of the past is the most plausible justification of democracy. Democracy is the best form of the government, neither because it offers equal respect for everyone nor because it represents the will of the people. It is the best because, ceteris paribus, the utility of instituting democracy is higher than that of instituting any other form of government, as surmised by the intellectuals of the past. Her dissertation calls this common sense view the best results argument, and defends the view.

Prior to obtaining her Ph.D degree from the University of California, San Diego, she was a Ph.D. student at ABD (All But Dissertation) stage at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Inbetween, she took a decade of academic break to raise her family. She also was a graduate student at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Prior to coming to America to pursue her Ph.D degree, she was a Ph.D. student at Korea University in Seoul, Korea, where she received her Master and Bachelor degrees. You can read more about Dr. Nanhee Byrnes's teaching experiences and academic work here.



These are what students say about Dr. Byrnes and her lectures. You can read the whole evaluation here.
  • Fun and Clear on teaching.
  • Great instructor! Very passionate about teaching.
  • Flexible with students' schedules and worked with them to figure out assignments. Very patient when it came to assignments. Awesome professor.
  • Nanhee has placed philosophy in a different light. She helps to put philosophical questions in present terms and help me see their application in modern day dilemmas. Out end of the day debates were awesome!
  • Nanhee is a really motivated and fun professor. She does her best to make the topic sound exciting. She is very charismatic and cares deeply for her students' well-being.....
  • Nanhee was a great professor....I really enjoyed being her student.
  • She is very out-gong lecturer, and keeps people interested and focused thorough her gestures and very interesting arguments....
  • She is super enthusiastic, understanding, and cares about her students
  • Very interesting course on political philosophy. Byrnes makes the material for this course easy to understand.
  • Nanhee made a difference in my UCSD experience. She cared about her students and was really good explaining the material....
  • VERY enthusiastic about the subject; so much so that you can't help but want to participate I suppose. She really tries to encourage classroom participation.



These books written by Dr Nanhee Byrnes. They are available at