Prof. Agbakoba, J.C.A

Joseph C. A. Agbakoba is a professor of philosophy at the University of Nigeria. He is a 2022 recipient of the prestigious Georg Forster Research Award. He has been a Volkswagen Foundation grantee, an Alexander von Humboldt fellow, an alumnus of Budapest’s Central European University, SUN program, a visiting scholar at Cape Coast and Frankfurt. He is Research Associate at the Ali Mazrui Centre for Higher Education, University of Johannesburg. He was Head of Department of Philosophy at the University of Nigeria from 2007-2010 and Dean, School of General Studies, 2012-2013; from 2013 to 2017, he was Deputy Vice Chancellor (Vice President) at Madonna University Nigeria. He is a former president of the Nigerian Philosophical Association. Agbakoba is also the Regional Coordinator for Africa for the Council for Research in Values and Philosophy (CRVP), Washington DC; the Vice President for Africa for COMIUCAP (Conférence Mondiale des Institutions Universitaires Catholiques de Philosophie) and a member of the Steering Committee of the International Federation of Philosophical Societies (FISP), 2008 to 2024. He has published widely locally and internationally; his most recent book publication is the book, Development and Modernity in Africa: An Intercultural Philosophical Perspective, published in June/July 2019 by Rüdiger Köppe Verlag, Köln.

Presentations and Publications

Presentations and Publications
Keynote Addresses/Leader Paper/Invited Presentations
  1. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “African Epistemologies”, a lecture, presented in African Epistemologies – a Workshop with Professor Joseph C. A. Agbakoba, 7th December 2023. BCDSS, University of Bonn, Germany.
  2. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “Reasonabilism and the Socio-centric Foundations of Intergenerational Justice in African Thought”, a paper presented in the conference, Justice Between Generation: Asian, African, Indigenous, and Western Perspectives, Sept. 29-Oct 1, 2021, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada.
  3. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Public Lecture, Development and Modernity in Africa: An Intercultural Philosophical, Perspective, February, 27, 2020, 14:00-15:00 Leeuwenborch C0062, Wageningen University and Research, The Netherlands.
  4. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Sovereignty and the Right to Development: Conflicts, Challenges and Solutions, Fair Limits Project Workshop, Utrecht University, Netherlands, February 26, 2020, 14.00-17.30 in the Stijlkamer, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies (Janskerkhof 13).
  5. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Research Forum of the Philosophy Department, Public Lecture, Philosophical Values and (Under)Development Processes in Africa: Explorations of Positive Justice and Related Notions, Wednesday, January 22, 16-18 at RW I, room S 64, University of Bayreuth, Germany
  6. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Panel Chair, Session A on African Philosophy, at the 24th World Congress of Philosophy; theme: Learning to be Human, 13th to 20th August, 2018, at the China National Convention Center, Beijing.
  7. Agbakoba, J. C. A., “Philosophy, Traditional African Ethics and Christianity” a presentation at the Round Table on Philosophy and the Encounter with Theology, organized by the World Union of Catholic Philosophical Societies during the 24th World Congress of Philosophy, 13th to 20th August, 2018, at the China National Convention Center, Beijing.
  8. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “Forgiveness and Reconciliation in the African Context”, a presentation at the session on Re-Learning to be Human for/in Global Times (VII): Forgiveness and Reconciliation: Onto-Political Dimensions, organized by the Council for Research in Values and Philosophy, Washington DC, during the 24th World Congress of Philosophy, 13th to 20th August, 2018, at the China National Convention Center, Beijing.
  9. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “The Nature of the Traditional African Knowledge Systems and Its Significances for African Culture”, presented at the Conference on African Origins: New Scientific Evidence on Origins of Nigerian Peoples, held at the MUSON Centre, Lagos, 21st February, 2018. (Lead paper presentation).
  10. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Keynote Lecture, “Interpretations and significance of Afa symbols and symbolism in the Igbo (African) knowledge system: an intercultural philosophical approach”, International Conference, Thinking through Concepts / Thinking through Data, Processes of Mediation and Pitfalls in Academic Dealings with African Lifeworlds, BIGSAS, University of Bayreuth, Germany, 21st – 23rd October 2016.
  11. Agbakoba, J.C.A., AFRASO-Lecture, “Asian Influence on African Agency in Relation to Development: Challenges and Possibilities”, Campus Westend, Goethe University, Frankfurt, 21st April, 2016
  12. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “On the Notion and Possibility of Cross-Cultural Justice in a World of Diversity and Conflicting Interests”, presented in the conference: The Grammar of Justice organized by the Leibniz Research Group at the Normative Orders, Goethe University, Frankfurt, 10th -12th September, 2014.
  13. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “Plenary Roundtable Discussant”, African-Asian Encounters (1): New Co -Operations-New Dependencies? 1st International Conference of Africa-Asia Development University Network (AADUN) and the Africa's Asian Option (AFRASO) Project, Goethe University Frankfurt held at Crystal Crown Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 11th-13th March, 2014.
  14. Agbakoba, J.C.A., Panel Chair, Session on Philosophy of Development, 23rd World Congress of Philosophy, theme: Philosophy as Inquiry and Way of Life held from 4th – 10th August, 2013 in Athens, Greece.
  15. Agbakoba, J.C.A., “The Problem of Choice and Responsibility in Modern Africa's Development”, an invited presentation at a Workshop on Justice and Development hosted by the Centre of Advanced Studies, Justitia Amplificata, Goethe University Frankfurt, in IG HochHaus, Campus Westend, Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany, 13th – 14th December, 2012.
  1. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2024), “Reasonabilism, Homeostasis and Intergenerational Justice in African Thought” in Hiroshi Abe, Mathias Fritsch and Mario Wenning (eds.), Intercultural Philosophy and Environmental Justice between Generations, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp 75-94.
  2. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2023), “Decolonization, Trans-colonization and Development: The Challenges of Changing Epistemic Concerns and Indigenous Knowledge Production in Africa”, in Emnet Tadesse Woldegiorgis, Shireen Motala, Creating the New African University, Leiden Netherlands: Brill. pp.106-129.
  3. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2022), “Culture and Civilizational Progress: The Problems of Dialogue”, In Peter Jonkers and Fu Youde (eds.), Crossing Boundaries: Challenges and Opportunities of Intercultural Dialogue, Washington DC: The Council for Research in Values and Philosophy, pp 89-95.
  4. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2022), “Heterosis and trans-colonization: an African philosophical perspective” in  Filosofie & Praktijk, Volume 43, Issue 3/4, Jan 2022, p. 34 - 48
  5. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2022), “On the Kantian Influence in African Thought and the Notion of Trans-colonization”, Accepted for publication in Estudos Kantianos, July – December 2021 9(2):15-32
  6. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2022), “The Anti-Colonial Revolution Converse: Limitations of Nationalism and the Demands of Positive Freedom and Productive Justice”, in Edwin Etieyibo (ed.), Africa's Radicalisms and Conservatisms, Leiden, Netherlands: Brill, pp.231-242.
  7. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2021/2022) “Responsibility, Rights and Racism: A Perspective from Igbo Religious Philosophy and Option out of Black Subalternity”, in Philosophy, Culture and Traditions, Volume 14, 2018: 61-77.
  8. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2021), University of Johannesburg, Ali Mazrui Centre for Higher Education (AMCHES) Lecture Series on African Higher Education, 16th November, 2021. Lecture title: “Trans-colonization and an African Philosophy of Education and Development: Contestations of Epistemic Orientations”. Available at: (Audio/video publication).
  9. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2020), “Interkulturelle Philosophie in Afrika Epistemische Sorge und epistemische Orientierung”, Anna Zschauer (trs.) in Anna Zschauer, Robert Lehmann, Tony Pacyna (eds) Culture & Method. Aspects of Philosophyzing Interculturally in Intercultural Philosophy 2020(1) Original article from Development and Modernity in Africa: An Intercultural Philosophical Perspective (Köln, Germany: Rüdiger Köppe Verlag). (Journal Article).
  10. Agbakoba J.C.A. (2020), “Indian Influence on Nigeria's Development: Challenges, Lessons and Possibilities” in Ross Anthony and Uta Ruppert (eds), Reconfiguring Transregionalisation in the Global South, Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave MacMillan, pp. 79-94 (Book Chapter).
  11. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2020), “Sub-Systemic Racism and the Challenge of Black Subalternity”, (Magazine Features Article). Available online at:
  12. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2019) Development and Modernity in Africa: An Intercultural Philosophical Perspective, Köln, Germany: Rüdiger Köppe Verlag. (Book).
  13. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2017), “Hybridity, Philosophy and Development in Africa”, a Keynote Address presented at an international conference organized by Conférence Mondiale des Institutions Universitaires Catholiques de Philosophie (COMIUCAP) and the The Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA); conference theme: Role of Philosophy in Africa; venue:  Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Nairobi, Kenya; dates: 20-22 April, 2017. Available at: (Audio/video publication).
  14. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2017), Editor, Frankfurter Afrikanistische Blätter (Frankfurt African Studies Bulletin) Number, 25-2013 (Journal of the Institute of African Studies Goethe University, Frankfurt; Published by Rüdiger Köppe Verlag, Köln, Germany). (Journal).
  15. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Aja, A.C. (2016) (editors) Universalism, Relativism, and Intercultural Philosophy, Washington DC: Council for Research in Values and Philosophy. (Book).
  16. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2014), “The Impact of the Belief in the Paranormal and the Occult on Economic and Political Development in West Africa”, in Frankfurter Afrikanistische Blätter (Frankfurt African Studies Bulletin), Number 21-2009, pp 7-24 (Germany). (Journal Article).
  17. Agbakoba, J. C. A. (2014), “Intercultural Philosophy and the Question of African Identity: An ‘Afro-constructivist”, Perspective' in William Sweet (Ed) What is Intercultural Philosophy, Washington DC: The Council for Research in Values and Philosophy, pp 95-106 (USA). (Book Chapter).
  18. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2013), “Philosophy and the Development of Culture: Order, Disorder, Africa's Experience”, a keynote presentation in the World Congress and General Assembly of COMIUCAP (Conférence Mondiale des Institutions Universitaires Catholiques de Philosophie), Conference Theme: Order and Disorder in the Age of Globalization(s): Philosophy and the Development of Cultures, held at St Augustine's College, Linden, Johannesburg, South Africa, 13th -17th November, 2013. Available at:
  19. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2012), “Entscheidungen, Verantwortung und traditionelle afrikanische Werte in der Entwicklung Afrikas” (translated into German) in Thomas Schreijäck (ed) Afrika im Aufbruch!?, Stuttgart: Grünewald, pp 37-75. Original article in English; “Choice, Responsibility and Traditional African Values in the Development of Africa”, (Book Chapter).
  20. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2012), “Belief and Action Systems: An Examination of the Efficacy and Effects of Paranormal Phenomena” in Josephat Obi Oguejiofor and Tobias Wendl (eds) Exploring the Occult and Paranormal in West Africa, Wien/Berlin: Lit Verlag, pp 20-32 (Austria/Germany). (Book Chapter).
  21. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2011), “Philosophy in Nigeria Today”, in Maija Kuule (Ed), Philosophy Worldwide: Current Situation, Volume 3, Riga: International Federation of Philosophical Societies, FISP, pp 5 – 13 (Latvia). (Book Chapter).
  22. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2011), “Knowledge and Science in Contemporary Africa”, in Afrika & Wissenschaft, Band 1 (2011), Heft 5, pp 19 – 30 (Germany). (Journal Article).
  23. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2011), “Developing Appropriate Administrative Instruments for the African Cultural Environment”, a paper presented at the Institute of Cultural Diplomacy, Berlin in 2011. Available online at:
  24. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2010), “Knowledge, Values and Interculturalism”, in Philosophy in the Dialogue of Cultures, Proceedings of the World Philosophy Day, Moscow – St Petersburg, November, 16-19, 2009 (Moscow: Progress-Tradition, pp 1073 – 1082.
  25. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2009), “Ethics and Conflict in Nigeria”, in Miriam Ikejiani-Clark (Ed) Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution in Nigeria, Ibadan, Nigeria: Spectrum Books Limited, pp 376-388.
  26. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2009), “Philosophy, Traditional African Ethical Outlook and the Problems of Economic Development”, in Revisita Portuguesa de Filosofia, Volume 65. 549-575 (Portugal).
  27. Agbakoba J.C.A. and Ibuot E. J. (2009), “Towards a New Paradigm of Christian Education in Nigeria”, in Edward J. Alam (Ed) Christianity, Culture and the Contemporary World: Challenges and New aradigms, Beirut, Lebanon: Notre Dame University Press, pp 141-147. (Lebanon).
  28. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2008/2009), “Building Cultural Bridges in the Era of Globalization”, in Philosophy, Culture, and Traditions, Volume 5, 47-56 (Canada).
  29. Agbakoba, J. C. A. (2008), “An Examination of the Impact of the Traditional African Knowledge Systems and Culture on Contemporary Educational Achievement in Africa”, in Eike Schamp and Stefan Schmid (Eds) Academic Co- operation With Africa, Munster: Lit Verlag, pp 19-36 (Germany).
  30. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and M.F. Asiegbu (2008), Editors, Four Decades of African Philosophy. Ibadan, Nigeria. Hope Publications Ltd.
  31. Agbakoba, J. C. A. (2008), Editor-in-Chief, Uche, Journal of Philosophy, Volume, 14.
  32. Agbakoba, J. C.A. (2008), “The Advantages and Disadvantages of Studying in Nigeria and Abroad”, in Cletus Umezinwa (Ed) Philosophy and Development, Enugu, Nigeria: Delta Publications Nig. Ltd, pp 68-71.
  33. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2007), “Nze on Titles, Names and Development”, in Perspectives on African Communalism, Victoria, Canada: Trafford Publishing Company, pp 449-454 (Canada).
  34. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Nwauche, E.S. (2006), “African Conceptions of Justice, Responsibility and Punishment”, in The Cambrian Law Review, Volume 37. 73-83 (United Kingdom).
  35. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2006), “Globalization, Religious Ideologies and Conflict: A Critical Examination and Exploration of Alternatives”, in Contemporary Philosophy, Volume XXVII. 17 – 26 (United States of America).
  36. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), “Characteristics of the Paranormal: Mechanisms of Impact and Methodology of Study”, in Uche Volume 12. 9-16
  37. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), “Ideology, Empirical Sciences and Modern Philosophical Systems”, in Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies, JSRI Number 10. 116 –125. (Romania)
  38. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), “Philosophy and Development: Theoretical Considerations on the Impact of Worldviews on Development”, in Journal of Philosophy and Culture. Volume 2 Number 2. 75 – 85. (Ghana).
  39. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), “Philosophy and Development: Meta-Theoretical and Methodological Considerations”, in Uche, Volume 11. 25 – 43.
  40. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), “An Evaluation of Theophilus Okere's Conception of the Place of Traditional African Values in Contemporary African Societies”, in J.O. Oguejiofor and G.I. Onah (Eds) African Philosophy and the Hermeneutics of Culture, Munster: Lit Verlag, pp 230-245 (Germany).
  41. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), Editor, Uche, Journal of Philosophy, Volume 11.
  42. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2005), Editor, Uche, Journal of Philosophy, Volume 12.
  43. Agbakoba, J. C. A. (2004), “An Evaluation of Knowledge in Traditional African Thought and Its Impact on Contemporary Times”, in Journal of Indian Council of Philosophical Research. Volume XXI, Number 4. 129 – 146. (India).
  44. Agbakoba, J.C. A. (2004), “Traditional African Political Thought and the Crisis of Governance in Contemporary African Societies” in Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies JSRI No. 7. 137 – 152. (Romania).
  45. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2004), “The Supreme Being in Traditional Africa Thought: A Logico-Ontological Approach”, Annual of Medieval Studies at CEU Volume 10, 129-145 (Hungary).
  46. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2004), “Philosophical Appraisal of Leadership in Relation to Africa”, Ogirisi: New Journal of African Studies Volume 2 No. 1., 109-123.
  47. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2004), “The Self and Its Brain: A Note to Eccles' Strong Interactionist Thesis”, in West African Journal of Philosophical Studies, Volume 7, 36 – 47.
  48. Agbakoba, J.C. A. (2004), “On the African Origin of Greek Philosophy”, in Uche Vol. 10, 2004. Pp. 61 – 67.
  49. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2004), Editor Uche, Journal of Philosophy, Volume 10.
  50. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Asiegbu, M.F. (2004) Editors, Philosophy and Praxis in Africa, Proceedings of the Nigerian Philosophy Association Conference, May 20th-21st 2004.
  51. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2003), Philosophical Issues in Development, Enugu: Fourth Dimension Publishers. 104.
  52. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2003), “The Development Gap Requirements, Afrocentrism and Intellectual Leadership;” in J.O. Oguejiofor (ed.) Philosophy, Democracy and Responsible Governance in Africa, Munster, Germany: LIT Verlag, pp 140-152
  53. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2003), “Logical Quantification of Values, Religio-Ethical Systems and Globalization: A Preliminary Evaluation of the European Scene”, in Maria Marczewska-Rytko (ed) Religion in Changing Europe: Between Fundamentalism and Pluralism (Lublin, Poland: Maria Curie-Sklodowska University Press, pp. 43-67.
  54. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2002), “Cognition, Ethnicity and Democracy”, in Journal of Liberal Studies, Vol. 10 No. 1 June 2002 pp. 251-264.
  55. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2001), Theories of Mind: A Case for Interactionism. Nsukka: University of Nigeria Press. 141 pp
  56. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (2000), “Power, Individualism and the Gender Crises”, in Journal of Liberal Studies, Vol. 8 No. 1, April 2000. pp 8 – 18.
  57. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (1999), “A Critical Reflection on Asiegbu's Conception of Moral Philosophy and National Development”, in F. U. Okafor (ed.) Reflections on Asiegbu's Ethical Philosophy. (Nsukka: Afro – Orbis Publishers, 1999), pp. 9-19.
  58. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (1998), “Towards a Philosophy of Technology and Development for Africa”, in J. Obi Oguejiofor (ed.) AFRICA: Philosophy and Public Affairs, Enugu: Delta, pp. 217 – 240.
  59. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (1997), “Natural Resources”, in T. U. Nwala (ed). History and Philosophy of Science (Nsukka: Niger Books and Pub. Co. Ltd., 1997) pp. 119 – 123.
  60. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Nwala, T.U. (1997), “Science in the 20th Century”, in T.U. Nwala (ed.) History and Philosophy of Science, pp. 36 – 38
  61. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Nwala T.U. (1997), “Pollution and Hazards” in T.U. Nwala (ed.) History and Philosophy of Science, pp 124 – 130.
  62. Agbakoba, J.C.A. and Nwala T.U. (1997), “Science and Technology: Their Uses”, in T.U. Nwala (ed.) History and Philosophy of Science, pp. 131 – 134
  63. Agbakoba, J.C.A. (1994), “Marx's Moral Positivism: A Critique”, in Uche Journal of the Department of Philosophy, University of Nigeria Nsukka. Volume 9, pp 24-29.
Department of Philosophy
University of Nigeria
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