Year:

Forthcoming articles
  1. Mirko Farina (forthcoming). On the Active Boundaries of Vision. Biology and Philosophy.
    No categories
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  2. Pierre-Luc Germain, Emanuele Ratti & Federico Boem (Forthcoming). Junk or Functional DNA? ENCODE and the Function Controversy. Biology and Philosophy:1-25.
    In its last round of publications in September 2012, the Encyclopedia Of DNA Elements (ENCODE) assigned a biochemical function to most of the human genome, which was taken up by the media as meaning the end of ‘Junk DNA’. This provoked a heated reaction from evolutionary biologists, who among other things claimed that ENCODE adopted a wrong and much too inclusive notion of function, making its dismissal of junk DNA merely rhetorical. We argue that this criticism rests on misunderstandings concerning (...)
    Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  3. Manolo Martínez (forthcoming). Informationally-Connected Property Clusters, and Polymorphism. Biology and Philosophy:1-19.
    I present and defend a novel version of the homeostatic property cluster (HPC) account of natural kinds. The core of the proposal is a development of the notion of co-occurrence, central to the HPC account, along information-theoretic lines. The resulting theory retains all the appealing features of the original formulation, while increasing its explanatory power, and formal perspicuity. I showcase the theory by applying it to the (hitherto unsatisfactorily resolved) problem of reconciling the thesis that biological species are natural kinds (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  4. Russell Powell & Nicholas Shea (forthcoming). Homology Across Inheritance Systems. Biology and Philosophy:1-26.
    Recent work on inheritance systems can be divided into inclusive conceptions, according to which genetic and non-genetic inheritance are both involved in the development and transmission of nearly all animal behavioral traits, and more demanding conceptions of what it takes for non-genetic resources involved in development to qualify as a distinct inheritance system. It might be thought that, if a more stringent conception is adopted, homologies could not subsist across two distinct inheritance systems. Indeed, it is commonly assumed that homology (...)
    Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  5. Raphael Scholl & Massimo Pigliucci (forthcoming). The Proximate–Ultimate Distinction and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: Causal Irrelevance Versus Explanatory Abstraction. Biology and Philosophy:1-18.
    Mayr’s proximate–ultimate distinction has received renewed interest in recent years. Here we discuss its role in arguments about the relevance of developmental to evolutionary biology. We show that two recent critiques of the proximate–ultimate distinction fail to explain why developmental processes in particular should be of interest to evolutionary biologists. We trace these failures to a common problem: both critiques take the proximate–ultimate distinction to neglect specific causal interactions in nature. We argue that this is implausible, and that the distinction (...)
    Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  6. Argyris Arnellos, Alvaro Moreno & Kepa Ruiz-Mirazo (forthcoming). Organizational Requirements for Multicellular Autonomy: Insights From a Comparative Case Study. Biology and Philosophy:1-34.
    In this paper we explore the organizational conditions underlying the emergence of organisms at the multicellular level. More specifically, we shall propose a general theoretical scheme according to which a multicellular organism is an ensemble of cells that effectively regulates its own development through collective (meta-cellular) mechanisms of control of cell differentiation and cell division processes. This theoretical result derives from the detailed study of the ontogenetic development of three multicellular systems (Nostoc punctiforme, Volvox carteri and Strongylocentrotus purpuratus) and, in (...)
    Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  7. Nicolas J. Bullot (forthcoming). Agent Tracking: A Psycho-Historical Theory of the Identification of Living and Social Agents. Biology and Philosophy:1-24.
    To explain agent-identification behaviours, universalist theories in the biological and cognitive sciences have posited mental mechanisms thought to be universal to all humans, such as agent detection and face recognition mechanisms. These universalist theories have paid little attention to how particular sociocultural or historical contexts interact with the psychobiological processes of agent-identification. In contrast to universalist theories, contextualist theories appeal to particular historical and sociocultural contexts for explaining agent-identification. Contextualist theories tend to adopt idiographic methods aimed at recording the heterogeneity (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  8. W. D. Christensen, J. D. Collier & C. A. Hooker (forthcoming). Adaptiveness and Adaptation: A New Autonomy-Theoretic Analysis and Critique. Biology and Philosophy.
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  9. Lasse Gerrits & Peter Marks (forthcoming). The Evolution of Wright's (1932) Adaptive Field to Contemporary Interpretations and Uses of Fitness Landscapes in the Social Sciences. Biology and Philosophy:1-21.
    The concepts of adaptation and fitness have such an appeal that they have been used in other scientific domains, including the social sciences. One particular aspect of this theory transfer concerns the so-called fitness landscape models. At first sight, fitness landscapes visualize how an agent, of any kind, relates to its environment, how its position is conditional because of the mutual interaction with other agents, and the potential routes towards improved fitness. The allure of fitness landscapes is first and foremost (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  10. Jonathan Michael Kaplan (forthcoming). Race, IQ, and the Search for Statistical Signals Associated with so-Called “X”-Factors: Environments, Racism, and the “Hereditarian Hypothesis”. Biology and Philosophy:1-17.
    Some authors defending the “hereditarian” hypothesis with respect to differences in average IQ scores between populations have argued that the sorts of environmental variation hypothesized by some researchers rejecting the hereditarian position should leave discoverable statistical traces, namely changes in the overall variance of scores or in variance–covariance matrices relating scores to other variables. In this paper, I argue that the claims regarding the discoverability of such statistical signals are broadly mistaken—there is no good reason to suspect that the hypothesized (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  11. Stuart Kauffman & Philip Clayton (forthcoming). Emergence, Autonomous Agents, and Organization. Biology and Philosophy.
    No categories
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  12. Jay Odenbaugh (forthcoming). Semblance or Similarity? Reflections on Simulation and Similarity. Biology and Philosophy:1-15.
    In this essay, I critically evaluate components of Michael Weisberg’s approach to models and modeling in his book Simulation and Similarity. First, I criticize his account of the ontology of models and mathematics. Second, I respond to his objections to fictionalism regarding models arguing that they fail. Third, I sketch a deflationary approach to models that retains many elements of his account but avoids the inflationary commitments.
    No categories
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  13. Jun Otsuka (forthcoming). Using Causal Models to Integrate Proximate and Ultimate Causation. Biology and Philosophy:1-19.
    Ernst Mayr’s classical work on the nature of causation in biology has had a huge influence on biologists as well as philosophers. Although his distinction between proximate and ultimate causation recently came under criticism from those who emphasize the role of development in evolutionary processes, the formal relationship between these two notions remains elusive. Using causal graph theory, this paper offers a unified framework to systematically translate a given “proximate” causal structure into an “ultimate” evolutionary response, and illustrates evolutionary implications (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  14. Carlos Santana (forthcoming). Save the Planet: Eliminate Biodiversity. Biology and Philosophy:1-20.
    Recent work in the philosophy of biology has attempted to clarify and defend the use of the biodiversity concept in conservation science. I argue against these views, and give reasons to think that the biodiversity concept is a poor fit for the role we want it to play in conservation biology on both empirical and conceptual grounds. Against pluralists, who hold that biodiversity consists of distinct but correlated properties of natural systems, I argue that the supposed correlations between these properties (...)
    Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  15. Theresa Schilhab (forthcoming). What Mirror Self-Recognition Can Tell Us About Aspects of Self. Biology and Philosophy.
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  16. Peter Schulte (forthcoming). Perceptual Representations: A Teleosemantic Answer to the Breadth-of-Application Problem. Biology and Philosophy:1-18.
    Teleosemantic theories of representation are often criticized as being “too liberal”, i.e. as categorizing states as representations which are not representational at all. Recently, a powerful version of this objection has been put forth by Tyler Burge. Focusing on perception, Burge defends the claim that all teleosemantic theories apply too broadly, thereby missing what is distinctive about representation. Contra Burge, I will argue in this paper that there is a teleosemantic account of perceptual states that does not fall prey to (...)
    Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
 Previous issues
  
Next issues