I defend a view of the structure of visual property-awareness by considering the phenomenon of perceptual constancy. I argue that visual property-awareness is a three-place relation between a subject, a property, and a manner of presentation. Manners of presentation mediate our visual awareness of properties without being objects of visual awareness themselves. I provide criteria of identity for manners ofpresentation, and I argue that our ignorance of their intrinsic nature does not compromise the viability of a theory that employs them. (...) In closing, I argue that the proposed manners of presentation are consistent with key direct-realist claims about the structure of visual awareness. (shrink)
Broadening access to both computational and educational resources is crit- ical to diffusing machine learning (ML) innovation. However, today, most ML resources and experts are siloed in a few countries and organizations. In this article, we describe our pedagogical approach to increasing access to applied ML through a massive open online course (MOOC) on Tiny Machine Learning (TinyML). We suggest that TinyML, applied ML on resource-constrained embedded devices, is an attractive means to widen access because TinyML leverages low-cost and globally (...) accessible hardware and encourages the development of complete, self-contained applications, from data collection to deployment. To this end, a collaboration between academia and industry produced a four part MOOC that provides application-oriented instruction on how to develop solutions using TinyML. The series is openly available on the edX MOOC platform, has no prerequisites beyond basic programming, and is designed for global learners from a variety of backgrounds. It introduces real-world applications, ML algorithms, data-set engineering, and the ethi- cal considerations of these technologies through hands-on programming and deployment of TinyML applications in both the cloud and on their own microcontrollers. To facili- tate continued learning, community building, and collaboration beyond the courses, we launched a standalone website, a forum, a chat, and an optional course-project com- petition. We also open-sourced the course materials, hoping they will inspire the next generation of ML practitioners and educators and further broaden access to cutting-edge ML technologies. (shrink)
: This paper presents a method of moral problem solving in clinical practice that is inspired by the philosophy of John Dewey. This method, called "clinical pragmatism," integrates clinical and ethical decision making. Clinical pragmatism focuses on the interpersonal processes of assessment and consensus formation as well as the ethical analysis of relevant moral considerations. The steps in this method are delineated and then illustrated through a detailed case study. The implications of clinical pragmatism for the use of principles in (...) moral problem solving are discussed. (shrink)
: This response to Lynn Jansen's critique of clinical pragmatism concentrates on two themes: (1) contrasting approaches to moral epistemology and (2) the connection between theory and practice in clinical ethics. Particular attention is paid to the status of principles and the role of consensus, with some closing speculations on how Dewey might view the current state of bioethics.
The idea that science is or should be value-free, and that values are or should be formed independently of science, has been under fire by philosophers of science for decades. Science and Moral Imagination directly challenges the idea that science and values cannot and should not influence each other. Matthew J. Brown argues that science and values mutually influence and implicate one another, that the influence of values on science is pervasive and must be responsibly managed, and that science (...) can and should have an influence on our values. This interplay, he explains, must be guided by accounts of scientific inquiry and value judgment that are sensitive to the complexities of their interactions. Brown presents scientific inquiry and value judgment as types of problem-solving practices and provides a new framework for thinking about how we might ethically evaluate episodes and decisions in science, while offering guidance for scientific practitioners and institutions about how they can incorporate value judgments into their work. His framework, dubbed "the ideal of moral imagination," emphasizes the role of imagination in value judgment and the positive role that value judgment plays in science. (shrink)
Spinoza was one of the most influential figures of the Enlightenment, but his often obscure metaphysics makes it difficult to understand the ultimate message of his philosophy. Although he regarded freedom as the fundamental goal of his ethics and politics, his theory of freedom has not received sustained, comprehensive treatment. Spinoza holds that we attain freedom by governing ourselves according to practical principles, which express many of our deepest moral commitments. Matthew J. Kisner focuses on this theory and presents (...) an alternative picture of the ethical project driving Spinoza's philosophical system. His study of the neglected practical philosophy provides an accessible and concrete picture of what it means to live as Spinoza's ethics envisioned. (shrink)
Asylum has become a highly charged political issue across developed countries, raising a host of difficult ethical and political questions. What responsibilities do the world's richest countries have to refugees arriving at their borders? Are states justified in implementing measures to prevent the arrival of economic migrants if they also block entry for refugees? Is it legitimate to curtail the rights of asylum seekers to maximize the number of refugees receiving protection overall? This book draws upon political and ethical theory (...) and an examination of the experiences of the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and Australia to consider how to respond to the challenges of asylum. In addition to explaining why asylum has emerged as such a key political issue in recent years, it provides a compelling account of how states could move towards implementing morally defensible responses to refugees. (shrink)
Based on the French notion of terroir or ‘the taste of place,’ a certified geographical indication (GI) identifies an agro-food product as originating in a particular territory and suggests that its quality, reputation, or other characteristics are essentially or exclusively attributable to its geographical origin. Previous scholarship exploring the social construction of terroir has focused on how disparities in political, economic, and cultural power shape GI regulations, certification procedures, and territorial boundaries. While these works have considered knowledge as a resource (...) deployed through relations of authority, studies of GI implementation have not adequately considered an important aspect of power in contemporary politics: the epistemic authority to assert the legitimacy of knowledge and its relevance to policymaking. In contrast, in this article, I take the accomplishment of epistemic authority – to determine the ‘essential’ and ‘exclusive’ physical and/or cultural attributes of place that shape product character – as key to the social construction of terroir and the institutionalization of GI regulations. This process is explored through a case study of Ecuador’s 2013-2019 implementation of a GI for Galápagos Islands coffee. I draw on analysis of relevant policy and regulatory documents and semi-structured interviews with 21 key stakeholders to argue that analytical attention to the legitimacy and relevance of terroir knowledge explains how coffee producers were able to deploy authoritative knowledge to disrupt and reinforce relations of authority and challenge the terms and mechanisms of GI qualification. (shrink)
The Impact of 9-11 on Religion and Philosophy is the sixth volume of the six-volume series The Day that Changed Everything? edited by Matthew J. Morgan. This volume features a foreword by John Esposito and contributors include Jean Bethke Elshtain, Philip Yancey, John Milbank, Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz, John Cobb and Martin Cook.
Thirteen original essays by leading scholars explore aspects of Spinoza's ethical theory and, in doing so, deepen our understanding of it as the richly rewarding core of his system. They resolve interpretive difficulties, advance longstanding debates, and point the direction for future research.
One of the liveliest debates about cognition concerns whether our cognition sometimes extends beyond our brains and bodies. One party says Yes, another No. This paper shows that debate between these parties has been epistemologically confused and requires reorienting. Both parties frequently appeal to empirical considerations and to extra-empirical theoretical virtues to support claims about where cognition is. These things should constrain their claims, but cannot do all the work hoped. This is because of the overlooked fact, uncovered in this (...) paper, that we could never distinguish the rival views empirically or by typical theoretical virtues. I show this by drawing on recent work on testing, predictive accuracy, and theoretical virtues. The recommendation to emerge is that we step back from debate about where cognition is, to the epistemology of what cognition is. (shrink)
This paper isolates a hard, long-standing species problem: developing a comprehensive and exacting theory about the constitutive conditions of the species category, one that is accurate for most of the living world, and which vindicates the widespread view that the species category is of more theoretical import than categories such as genus, sub-species, paradivision, and stirp. The paper then uncovers flaws in several views that imply we have either already solved that hard species problem or dissolved it altogether – so-called (...) We Are Done views. In doing so the paper offers new criticisms of the general lineage species concept (GLSC), evolutionary species concept (EvSC), biological species concept (BSC), other similar concepts, Ereshefsky’s eliminative pluralism about the species category, and both Mishler’s pessimism and Wilkins’ phenomenalism about that category. Opposed to We Are Done views, the paper argues for a Revving Up view, on which we are nearly ready to begin the hard species problem in earnest. To help work towards these conclusions, the paper begins with an outline of a new kind of view of species (Barker 2019a), which proposes they are feedback systems of a mathematically specifiable and empirically testable sort. (shrink)
In this paper I give a definition of assertion that develops William P. Alston’s account. Alston’s account of assertion combines a responsibility condition R, which captures the appropriate socio-normative status that one undertakes in asserting something, with an explicit presentation condition, such that the speech act in some way presents the content of what is being asserted. I develop Alston’s account of explicit presentation and add a Brandomian responsibility condition. I then argue that this produces an attractive position on the (...) nature of assertion. (shrink)
Family ties play a particular and distinctive role in immigration policy. Essentially every country allows ‘family-based immigration’ of some sorts, and family ties may have significant importance in many other areas of immigration policy as well, grounding ‘derivative’ rights to asylum, providing access to citizenship and other benefits at accelerated rates, and serving as a shield from the danger of removal or deportation. Furthermore, status as a child may provide certain benefits to irregular migrants or others without proper immigration standing (...) that is not available to adults. Despite the fact that these benefits are extremely widespread, the justification for them remains less than fully clear, and the extent of the benefits required by considerations of justice (as opposed to expediency or other policy considerations) is debated. While essentially all states recognize at least some of these rights, a significant number of them wish to reduce, rescind, or place significant conditions on them. The role of the family in immigration policy, then, stands in need of further clarification. In this paper I attempt to provide the needed clarification and justification. I discuss first questions about family unification or formation, focusing in particular on how broad a right must be provided by states wishing to have a just immigration policy, and on whether this right violates norms of liberal neutrality. I then discuss the family in relation to refugee and asylum policy, considering both when family ties should be given weight in refugee protection decision and when harm to a family member should, on its own, be able to be grounds for applying for refugee protection. I turn next to the question of when, and to what extent, family ties should be able to serve as a “shield” to removal or deportation, and finish with a discussion of the special rights of and obligations to children in immigration settings. (shrink)
A Significant percentage of the people outside their country of citizenship or residence who are unable to meet their basic needs on their own, and need international protection, do not fall under the definition set out in the UN Refugee Convention. This has led many - both academic commentators and activists - to call for a new, expanded refugee definition, preferably backed up by a new, binding, international convention. In earlier work I have resisted this call, arguing that there is (...) good reason to pick out a sub-stet of those in need of international aid - a set that largely, if not completely, corresponds to those picked out by the Refugee Convention - for special benefit and protection. However, even if Convention refugees are in some ways special, we are left with the question of what, if anything, is owed to those in need of aid who are not Convention refugees. In this chapter, I set out philosophical foundations for so-called complementary protection, and show how this may and should apply to people in need of international aid who are not Convention refugees. (shrink)
This ~4000 word essay introduces topics of essentialism, as they arise in social sciences. It distinguishes empirical (e.g., psychological) from philosophical studies of essentialisms, and both metaphysical and scientific essentialisms within philosophy. Essentialism issues in social science are shown to be more subtle and complex than often presumed.
Proponents of the value ladenness of science rely primarily on arguments from underdetermination or inductive risk, which share the premise that we should only consider values where the evidence runs out or leaves uncertainty; they adopt a criterion of lexical priority of evidence over values. The motivation behind lexical priority is to avoid reaching conclusions on the basis of wishful thinking rather than good evidence. This is a real concern, however, that giving lexical priority to evidential considerations over values is (...) a mistake and unnecessary for avoiding the wishful thinking. Values have a deeper role to play in science. (shrink)
I want to make plausible the following claim:Analyzing scientific inquiry as a species of socially distributed cognition has a variety of advantages for science studies, among them the prospects of bringing together philosophy and sociology of science. This is not a particularly novel claim, but one that faces major obstacles. I will retrace some of the major steps that have been made in the pursuit of a distributed cognition approach to science studies, paying special attention to the promise that such (...) an approach holds out for bridging the rift between philosophy and the social studies of science. (shrink)
This is a short introduction to a book symposium on Paul Gowder's recent book, _The Rule of Law in thee Real World_ (Cambridge University Press, 2016). The book symposium will appear in the St. Luis University Law Journal, 62 St. Louis U. L.J., -- (2018), with commentaries on Gowder's book by colleen Murphy, Robin West, Chad Flanders, and Matthew Lister, along with replies by Paul Gowder.
This paper is a response to some recent discussions of many-minds interpretations in the philosophical literature. After an introduction to the many-minds idea, the complexity of quantum states for macroscopic objects is stressed. Then it is proposed that a characterization of the physical structure of observers is a proper goal for physical theory. It is argued that an observer cannot be defined merely by the instantaneous structure of a brain, but that the history of the brain's functioning must also be (...) taken into account. Next the nature of probability in many-minds interpretations is discussed and it is suggested that only discrete probability models are needed. The paper concludes with brief comments on issues of actuality and identity over time. (shrink)
The costs of the COVID-19 pandemic are yet to be calculated, but they include the loss of millions of lives and the destruction of countless livelihoods. What is certain is that the SARS-CoV-2 virus has changed the way we live for the foreseeable future. It has forced many to live in ways they would have previously thought impossible. As well as challenging scientists and medical professionals to address urgent value conflicts in the short term, COVID-19 has raised slower-burning value questions (...) for corporations, public institutions, governments, and policymakers. In simple terms, the pandemic has brought what we care about into sharp relief, both collectively and individually. Whether this revaluation of our values will last beyond the current pandemic is unknown. Once COVID-19 has been tamed, will the desire to return to our previous lives be irresistible? Or will living under pandemic conditions have taught us something that will be incorporated into how we design our future lives and technologies? These are hard questions for the ethics of technology, which this volume aims to explore and address. (shrink)
Despite the recent upsurge of interest in comparative political theory, there has been virtually no serious examination of Buddhism by political philosophers in the past five decades. In part, this is because Buddhism is not typically seen as a school of political thought. However, as Matthew Moore argues, Buddhism simultaneously parallels and challenges many core assumptions and arguments in contemporary Western political theory. In brief, Western thinkers not only have a great deal to learn about Buddhism, they have a (...) great deal to learn from it. To both incite and facilitate the process of Western theorists engaging with this neglected tradition, this book provides a detailed, critical reading of the key primary Buddhist texts, from the earliest recorded teachings of the Buddha through the present day. It also discusses the relevant secondary literature on Buddhism and political theory, as well as the literatures on particular issues addressed in the argument. Moore argues that Buddhist political thought rests on three core premises--that there is no self, that politics is of very limited importance in human life, and that normative beliefs and judgments represent practical advice about how to live a certain way, rather than being obligatory commands about how all persons must act. He compares Buddhist political theory to what he sees as Western analogues--Nietzsche's similar but crucially different theory of the self, Western theories of limited citizenship from Epicurus to John Howard Yoder, and to the Western tradition of immanence theories in ethics. This will be the first comprehensive treatment of Buddhism as political theory. (shrink)
Spinoza's Ethics is one of the most significant texts of the early modern period, important to history, philosophy, Jewish studies and religious studies. It had a major influence on Enlightenment thinkers and the development of the modern world. In Ethics, Spinoza addresses the most fundamental perennial philosophical questions concerning the nature of God, human beings and a good life. His startling answers synthesize the longstanding traditions of ancient Greek and Jewish philosophy with the developments of the emerging scientific revolution. The (...) resulting philosophical system casts out the willing, personal God of Abrahamic religions and takes up the challenge of reconceiving the natural world and human beings in an entirely secular way. This volume offers a new translation based on a new critical edition, reflecting the state of the art in Spinoza scholarship, and also includes an introduction, chronology and glossary to help make this notoriously difficult text accessible. (shrink)
The view that it is better for life to be created free of disability is pervasive in both common sense and philosophy. We cast doubt on this view by focusing on an influential line of thinking that manifests it. That thinking begins with a widely-discussed principle, Procreative Beneficence, and draws conclusions about parental choice and disability. After reconstructing two versions of this argument, we critique the first by exploring the relationship between different understandings of well-being and disability, and the second (...) by more briefly focusing on the idea of a significant reason. By placing these results against the broader historical and ongoing contexts in which the lives of those with disabilities have been deemed of inferior quality, we conclude with a call for greater humility about disability and well-being in thought and practice. (shrink)
I discuss two popular but apparently contradictory theses: -/- T1. The democratic control of science – the aims and activities of science should be subject to public scrutiny via democratic processes of representation and participation. T2. The scientific control of policy, i.e. technocracy – political processes should be problem-solving pursuits determined by the methods and results of science and technology. Many arguments can be given for (T1), both epistemic and moral/political; I will focus on an argument based on the role (...) of non-epistemic values in policy-relevant science. I will argue that we must accept (T2) as a result of an appraisal of the nature of contemporary political problems. Technocratic systems, however, are subject to serious moral and political objections; these difficulties are sufficiently mitigated by (T1). I will set out a framework in which (T1) and (T2) can be consistently and compellingly combined. (shrink)
In this article, I consider the neglected question of justice between states in the distribution of responsibility for refugees. I argue that a just distribution of refugees across states is an important normative goal and, accordingly, I attempt to rethink the normative foundations of the global refugee regime. I show that because dismantling the restrictive measures currently used by states in the global South to prevent the arrival of refugees will not suffice to ensure a just distribution of refugees between (...) states, a more detailed account of how responsibilities should be shared between states is required. To this end, I make three claims. First, I argue that the definition of ‘refugee’ must be broadened beyond those subjected to persecution to include harms of action or omission by states that seriously jeopardise personal security or subsistence needs. Second, I argue that allocating a fair share of refugees to states should be based on state’s integrative capacities. Finally, I argue that distributive justice between states must be balanced against the legitimate interests of refugees in their destination country and the duty of states to ensure they are settled in places where they are likely to flourish. (shrink)
This short paper, written for a wide audience, introduces "science and values" topics as they have arisen in the context of eugenics. The paper especially focuses on the context of 20th century eugenics in western Canada, where eugenic legislation in two provinces was not repealed until the 1970s and thousands of people were sterilized without their consent. A framework for understanding science-value relationships within this context is discussed, and so too is recent relevant work in philosophy of science.
Common wisdom includes expressions such as “there is no accounting for taste'’ that express a widely-accepted subjectivism about taste. We commonly say things like “I can’t stand anything with onions in it'’ or “Oh, I’d never eat sushi,'’ and we accept such from our friends and associates. It is the position of this essay that much of this language is actually quite unacceptable. Without appealing to complete objectivism about taste, I will argue that there are good reasons to think that (...) there will be fairly wide agreement between experienced palates on aesthetic preferences, and that this result will not necessarily agree with unexperienced and unreflective opinions on the matter. Subjectivism about aesthetic preference can be taken to justify the practice of picking eating (after all, who is better to say what I’ll enjoy than me?), while the position of this paper is that such picky eating is a moral failing. To be a picky eater is to have a significant lack of openness to new experiences. It involves an irresponsible level of fallibilism with respect to taste. Never venturing into new aesthetic landscapes leads to a sort of repetitiveness, which in turn leads to a life full of blandness and banality. (shrink)
The border is an area where the rule of law has often found difficulty taking root, existing as law-free zones characterized by largely unbounded legal and administrative discretion. In his important new book, The Rule of Law in the Real World, Paul Gowder deftly combines historical examples, formal models, legal analysis, and philosophical theory to provide a novel and compelling account of the rule of law. In this paper I consider whether the account Gowder offers can provide the tools needed (...) to bring the border under the rule of law. I argue that on Gowder’s account, there are two ways in which we might try to extend the rule of law to the border.The first is to look at concrete connections that current citizens or members of the political community have with non-citizens. Just as the interests of current citizens give them strong reasons to coordinate to establish the rule of law in their own community, so may the interests of current members in connections with nonmembers give them reason to work to extend the rule of law to the border. These interests can include family ties, other forms of personal relationships, offers of employment, intellectual connections, and others. Some of these connections already serve to give greater legal protections, including protections from arbitrary decision-making, to some non-citizens, and the general trend, I argue, can and should be further strengthened The second method for extending the rule of law to the border involves appealing to certain universal norms so as to build a sense of community that stretches beyond borders. While these norms are not as robust or well established as domestic law, and therefore are unlikely to extend all of the protections of the rule of law to all people at the border, they can, I argues, be a basis for working against the worst arbitrary actions by border officials. I conclude by considering the vexed dispute about providing “amnesty” for unauthorized immigrants in the United States and other countries. I argues that Gowder’s account of the amnesty provided to supporters of the oligarchic coups in ancient Athens provides a model for thinking about when and how amnesties for unauthorized migrants can be done without offending the rule of law, thereby making them more palatable to current citizens. (Please download this paper for free from SSRN on the link provided on this page). (shrink)
It has been suggested, on the one hand, that quantum states are just states of knowledge; and, on the other, that quantum theory is merely a theory of correlations. These suggestions are confronted with problems about the nature of psycho-physical parallelism and about how we could define probabilities for our individual future observations given our individual present and previous observations. The complexity of the problems is underlined by arguments that unpredictability in ordinary everyday neural functioning, ultimately stemming from small-scale uncertainties (...) in molecular motions, may overwhelm, by many orders of magnitude, many conventionally recognized sources of observed ``quantum'' uncertainty. Some possible ways of avoiding the problems are considered but found wanting. It is proposed that a complete understanding of the relationship between subjective experience and its physical correlates requires the introduction of mathematical definitions and indeed of new physical laws. (shrink)
A far-reaching and influential view in evolutionary biology claims that species are cohesive units held together by gene flow. Biologists have recognized empirical problems facing this view; after sharpening the expression of the view, we present novel conceptual problems for it. At the heart of these problems is a distinction between two importantly different concepts of cohesion, what we call integrative and response cohesion. Acknowledging the distinction problematizes both the explanandum of species cohesion and the explanans of gene flow that (...) are central to the view we discuss. We conclude by tracing four broader implications for the study and conceptualization of species. (shrink)
Heather Douglas has helped to set the standard for twenty-first century discussions in philosophy of science on the topics of values in science and science in democracy. Douglas’s work has been part of a movement to bring the question of values in science back to center of the field and to focus especially on policy-relevant science. This first chapter, on the pervasive entanglement of science and values, includes an improved and definitive statement of the argument from inductive risk, which she (...) is single-handedly responsible for rehabilitating and returning to the center of the debate. This statement makes clear the fundamental and absolutely pervasive nature of inductive risk and its import for our understanding of the role of values in science. The chapter also provides a survey of the current field of alternative approaches to ideals for the epistemic role of values in science that is comprehensive and generous, yet critical of each. -/- In these brief comments, I focus on providing an alternative perspective on some conceptual and rhetorical issues in Douglas’s account, specifically dealing with the nature of values and the relation of the descriptive and the normative. This will lead me to somewhat different evaluations of two of the five new ideals for values in science that Douglas canvasses in the chapter. (shrink)
In this short paper I hope to use some ideas drawn from the theory and practice of civil disobedience to address one of the most difficult questions in immigration theory, one rarely addressed by philosophers or other theorists working on the topic: How should we respond to people who violate immigration law? I will start with what I take to be the easiest case for my approach—that of so-called “Dreamers”—unauthorized immigrants in the US who were brought to this country while (...) still children (often as infants) and who have spent the majority of their lives in the US. Members of this group have engaged in wide-scale protests, making the civil disobedience paradigm all the more plausible. I will then move on to the case of unauthorized immigrants who have engaged in protests, but who do not fall into the “Dreamer” category. Finally, I will consider whether thinking about immigration law violations from the perspective of civil disobedience—and the proper response to that—can help us think about immigration enforcement more generally. (shrink)
n 1909, the 50th anniversary of both the publication of Origin of the Species and his own birth, John Dewey published "The Influence of Darwin on Philosophy." This optimistic essay saw Darwin's advance not only as one of empirical or theoretical biology, but a logical and conceptual revolution that would shake every corner of philosophy. Dewey tells us less about the influence that Darwin exerted over philosophy over the past 50 years and instead prophesied the influence it would take in (...) the future. I will discuss this landmark paper and the key lessons Dewey draws from Darwinism for philosophy, and give a preliminary assessment of how well we've done so far. (shrink)
This paper explores the question of whether there can be a right to secede from a liberal state by examining the concept of a liberal state and the different forms of liberalism that may be appealed to in order to justify secession. It argues that where the foundations of the state’s legitimacy are conceived in terms of a non-derivative right to self-determination, then secession from a liberal state may be a justified form of action for different types of groups including (...) ‘illiberal’ ones. If, however, a broader definition of political legitimacy is adopted – one that is predicated upon the liberal notions of individual moral autonomy and equality – then the right to independent statehood will generally not include a right to secede from a state that already upholds these principles. Consequently, liberal theorists of secession are forced to choose between particularizing a right of independent statehood to groups trapped in illiberal states, or acknowledging that the right to secede includes a right to establish an ‘illiberal’ state that bestows upon its citizens unequal rights and entitlements other than a right of exit. (shrink)
This chapter will develop and apply ideas drawn from and inspired by Dewey’s work on science and democracy to the context of international relations (IR). I will begin with Dewey’s views on the nature of democracy, which lead us into his philosophy of science. I will show that scientific and policy inquiry are inextricably related processes, and that they both have special requirements in a democratic context. There are some challenges applying these ideas to the IR case, but these challenges (...) can be surmounted. To illustrate the fruitfulness of this Deweyan approach, I will end by showing that it provides an interesting new take on a major international crisis of our day: global climate change. (shrink)
In the first part of this paper, I will sketch the main features of traditional models of evidence, indicating idealizations in such models that I regard as doing more harm than good. I will then proceed to elaborate on an alternative model of evidence that is functionalist, complex, dynamic, and contextual, which I will call DYNAMIC EVIDENTIAL FUNCTIONALISM. I will demonstrate its application to an illuminating example of scientific inquiry, and defend it from some likely objections. In the second part, (...) I will use that alternative to solve a variety of classic and contemporary problems in the literature on scientific evidence having to do with the empirical basis of science and the use of evidence in public policy. (shrink)
Individuals are a prominent part of the biological world. Although biologists and philosophers of biology draw freely on the concept of an individual in articulating both widely accepted and more controversial claims, there has been little explicit work devoted to the biological notion of an individual itself. How should we think about biological individuals? What are the roles that biological individuals play in processes such as natural selection (are genes and groups also units of selection?), speciation (are species individuals?), and (...) organismic development (do genomes code for organisms)? Much of our discussion here will focus on organisms as a central kind of biological individual, and that discussion will raise broader questions about the nature of the biological world, for example, about its complexity, its organization, and its relation to human thought. (shrink)