Well Founding Grounding Grounding

Gabriel Oak Rabin, Brian Rabern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Those who wish to claim that all facts about grounding are themselves grounded (“the meta-grounding thesis”) must defend against the charge that such a claim leads to infinite regress and violates the well-foundedness of ground. In this paper, we defend. First, we explore three distinct but related notions of “well-founded”, which are often conflated, and three corresponding notions of infinite regress. We explore the entailment relations between these notions. We conclude that the meta-grounding thesis need not lead to tension with any of the three notions of “well-founded”. Finally, we explore the details of and motivations for further conditions on ground that one might add to generate a conflict between the meta-grounding thesis and a well-founded constraint. We explore these topics by developing and utilizing a formal framework based on the notion of a grounding structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-379
Number of pages31
JournalJournal of Philosophical Logic
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Foundationalism
  • Ground
  • Grounding grounding
  • Infinite regress
  • Metaphysical dependence
  • Well-founded

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy


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