While numerous qualitative social scientific analyses of epigenetics have been published, we still lack a macro-level, quantitative assessment of the field of epigenetics as a whole. This article is aimed at filling this gap. Mobilizing an extended version of the Web of Science, we constituted a corpus of 199,484 documents published between 1991 and 2017 and performed several scientometric analyses to map out the development and structure of the epigenetics field. Three main results were drawn from these investigations. First, contradicting (...) the hope expressed by some social scientists that their disciplines will find solace in epigenetics’ social biology, it is striking that the scientists, journals and institutions that drive most of the research in the field are overall little concerned with social and environmental dimensions of gene expression. Second, and confirming existing qualitative analyses, we find that epigenetics is constituted by diverse networks of scholars, institutions and research specialties that enjoy relative autonomy from each other and approach epigenetics through different thematic interests, from cognitive functions to cancer, to DNA methylation in plants and molecular biology. Third, findings obtained from the bibliographic coupling showed that these different networks became more and more autonomous over the last decade, which suggests that we are currently witnessing the constitution of a scientific archipelago akin to that of behavior genetics rather than to a discipline per se. At the same time, this differentiation was less pronounced conceptually speaking, as we also observed a clear standardization of the keywords used in epigenetics articles between 1991 and 2017, with DNA methylation and RNAs serving as rallying signs for different communities of researchers. (shrink)
The reward system of science is undergoing significant changes, as traditional indicators compete with initiatives that offer novel means of disseminating and assessing scholarly impact. This article considers a number of aspects of this reward system, including authorship, citations, acknowledgements and the growing use of social media platforms by academics, with an eye towards identifying contemporary issues relating to scholarly communication practices, as understood through the perspectives of Bourdieu’s symbolic capital and Merton’s recognition framework. The article posits that, while scientific (...) capital remains the foundation upon which the reward system of science is built, this system is revealing itself to be more and more multifaceted, extremely complex, and facing increasing tension between its traditional means of evaluation and the potential of new indicators in the digital era. The article presents an extended literature review, as well as recommendations for further consideration and empirical research. A better understanding of the perceptions of academics would be necessary to properly assess the effects of these new indicators on scholarly communication practices and the reward system of science. (shrink)
Avec un titre comme Luther et la philosophie, depuis le xviiie siècle et dans les milieux « libéraux » du xixe siècle, on aurait pu s’attendre à un exposé, bien sûr complet, de la philosophie du Réformateur. On trouve l’expression, par exemple, dans les tables analytiques de L’Encyclopédie, à l’entrée « luthéranisme ». Bien que Philippe Büttgen se soit donné comme objet, pour d’autres travaux, « la confessionnalisation de la philosophie ..
Jean-Luc Nancy discusses his life's work with Pierre-Philippe Jandin. As Nancy looks back on his philosophical texts, he thinks anew about democracy, community, jouissance, love, Christianity, and the arts.
Upon learning that John C. Harsanyi was awarded the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, in 1994, for his pioneering work in game theory, few economists probably questioned the appropriateness of that choice. The Budapest-born social scientist had already been recognized as a first-rank contributor to non-cooperative game theory for some time. However, as many readers of this journal will be aware, Harsanyi first contributed to welfare economics, not game theory. More importantly, he was (...) philosophically minded and accordingly has been “acknowledged as the most influential philosopher in economics”. 1 This is of some significance since, before Harsanyi became acquainted with economics around 1950, his main interest was philosophy and, to a lesser extent, sociology and psychology. Rather than an economist with philosophical leanings, Harsanyi was actually a philosopher turned economist. (shrink)
The Law of Causality and its Limits was the principal philosophical work of the physicist turned philosopher, Philipp Frank. Born in Vienna on March 20, 1884, Frank died in Cambridge, Massachusetts on July 21, 1966. He received his doctorate in 1907 at the University of Vienna in theoretical physics, having studied under Ludwig Boltzmann; his sub sequent research in physics and mathematics was represented by more than 60 scientific papers. Moreover his great success as teacher and expositor was recognized throughout (...) the scientific world with publication of his collaborative Die Differentialgleichungen der Mechanik und Physik, with Richard von Mises, in 1925-27. Frank was responsible for the second volume, on physics, and especially noted for his authoritative article on classical Hamiltonian mechanics and optics. Among his earliest papers were those, beginning in 1908, devoted to special relativity, which together with general relativity and physical cosmology occupied him throughout his life. Already in 1907, Frank published his seminal paper 'Kausalgesetz und Erfahrung', much later collected with a splendid selection of his essays on philosophy of science, in English. Joining the first 'Vienna Circle' in the first decade of the 20th century, with Hans Hahn, mathematician, and Otto Neurath, sociologist and economist, and deeply influenced by studies of Ernst Mach's critical conceptual histories of science and by the striking challenge of Poincare and Duhem, Frank continued his epistemological investigations. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to shed light on and develop what I call a phenomenological conception of experiential justification. According to this phenomenological conception, certain experiences gain their justificatory force from their distinctive phenomenology. Such an approach closely connects epistemology and philosophy of mind and has recently been proposed by several authors, most notably by Elijah Chudnoff, Ole Koksvik, and James Pryor. At the present time, however, there is no work that contrasts these different versions of PCEJ. This (...) paper not only bridges this gap, but also reveals problems in current versions of PCEJ. Consequently, I argue for a new version of PCEJ that focuses on what is given within experience and not on how what is given pushes me towards believing something. (shrink)
Ariès traces Western man's attitudes toward mortality from the early medieval conception of death as the familiar collective destiny of the human race to the modern tendency, so pronounced in industrial societies, to hide death as if it were an embarrassing family secret.
Today, one out of every six children suffers from some form of neurodevelopmental abnormality. The causes are mostly unknown. Some environmental chemicals are known to cause brain damage and many more are suspected of it, but few have been tested for such effects. Philippe Grandjean provides an authoritative and engaging analysis of how environmental hazards can damage brain development and what we can do about it. The brain's development is uniquely sensitive to toxic chemicals, and even small deficits may (...) negatively impact our academic achievements, economic success, risk of delinquency, and quality of life. Chemicals such as mercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, arsenic, and certain pesticides pose an insidious threat to the development of the next generation's brains. When chemicals in the environment affect the development of a child's brain, he or she is at risk for mental retardation, cerebral palsy, autism, ADHD, and a range of learning disabilities and other deficits that will remain for a lifetime.We can halt chemical brain drain and protect the next generation, however, and Grandjean tells us how. First, we need to control all of the 200 industrial chemicals that have already been proven to affect brain functions in adults, as their effects on the developing brain are likely even worse. We must also push for routine testing for brain toxicity, stricter regulation of chemical emissions, and more required disclosure on the part of industries who unleash hazardous chemicals into products and the environment. Decisions can still be made to protect the brains of future generations."In his crisply written, deeply documented book, Dr. Philippe Grandjean, renowned physician and public health specialist, describes the exquisite vulnerability of the developing human brain to toxic chemicals in the environment, a vulnerability that he ascribes to the brain's almost unimaginable complexity. Today, nearly one in 6 children is born with a neurodevelopmental disorder - a birth defect of the brain. One in 8 has attention deficit disorder. One in 68 is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. These rates are far higher than those of a generation ago, and, although they are less publicized, the problems are more prevalent than those caused by thalidomide in the 1960's. The increases are far too rapid to be genetic. They cannot be explained by better diagnosis. How then could they have come to be? Dr. Grandjean has a diagnosis -- the thousands of toxic chemicals that have been released to the environment in the past 40 years with no testing for toxicity. David P. Rall, former Director of the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, once stated that 'If thalidomide had caused a ten-point loss of IQ rather than obvious birth defects of the limbs, it would probably still be on the market'. This is the core message of Dr. Grandjean's 'must read' book." - Philip J. Landrigan, Dean for Global Health, Ethel H. Wise Professor and Chairman and Director, Children's Environmental Health Center, Mount Sinai School of Medicine. (shrink)
According to one productive and influential approach to cognition, categorization, object recognition, and higher level cognitive processes operate on a set of fixed features, which are the output of lower level perceptual processes. In many situations, however, it is the higher level cognitive process being executed that influences the lower level features that are created. Rather than viewing the repertoire of features as being fixed by low-level processes, we present a theory in which people create features to subserve the representation (...) and categorization of objects. Two types of category learning should be distinguished. Fixed space category learning occurs when new categorizations are representable with the available feature set. Flexible space category learning occurs when new categorizations cannot be represented with the features available. Whether fixed or flexible, learning depends on the featural contrasts and similarities between the new category to be represented and the individual's existing concepts. Fixed feature approaches face one of two problems with tasks that call for new features: If the fixed features are fairly high level and directly useful for categorization, then they will not be flexible enough to represent all objects that might be relevant for a new task. If the fixed features are small, subsymbolic fragments (such as pixels), then regularities at the level of the functional features required to accomplish categorizations will not be captured by these primitives. We present evidence of flexible perceptual changes arising from category learning and theoretical arguments for the importance of this flexibility. We describe conditions that promote feature creation and argue against interpreting them in terms of fixed features. Finally, we discuss the implications of functional features for object categorization, conceptual development, chunking, constructive induction, and formal models of dimensionality reduction. Key Words: concept learning; conceptual development; features; perceptual learning; stimulus encoding. (shrink)
Perceptual experiences justify. When I look at the black laptop in front of me and my perceptual experience presents me with a black laptop placed on my desk, my perceptual experience has justificatory force with respect to the proposition that there is black laptop on the desk. The present paper addresses the question of why perceptual experiences are a source of immediate justification: What gives them their justificatory force? I shall argue that the most plausible and the most straightforward answer (...) to this question consists in what I call the phenomenological conception of perceptual justification. Perceptual experiences justify by virtue of their distinctive presentive phenomenology. This is a truly internalist conception that enjoys significant advantages over rival conceptions. In the course of his paper, I demonstrate the advantages of the phenomenological conception and defend it against a recent objection. (shrink)
ABSTRACTWhat is the relation between ethical reflection and moral behavior? Does professional reflection on ethical issues positively impact moral behaviors? To address these questions, Schwitzgebel and Rust empirically investigated if philosophy professors engaged with ethics on a professional basis behave any morally better or, at least, more consistently with their expressed values than do non-ethicist professors. Findings from their original US-based sample indicated that neither is the case, suggesting that there is no positive influence of ethical reflection on moral action. (...) In the study at hand, we attempted to cross-validate this pattern of results in the German-speaking countries and surveyed 417 professors using a replication-extension research design. Our results indicate a successful replication of the original effect that ethicists do not behave any morally better compared to other academics across the vast majority of normative issues. Yet, unlike the original study, we found mixed results o... (shrink)
This paper concerns Aristotle's kind‐crossing prohibition. My aim is twofold. I argue that the traditional accounts of the prohibition are subject to serious internal difficulties and should be questioned. According to these accounts, Aristotle's prohibition is based on the individuation of scientific disciplines and the general kind that a discipline is about, and it says that scientific demonstrations must not cross from one discipline, and corresponding kind, to another. I propose a very different account of the prohibition. The prohibition is (...) based on Aristotle's scientific and metaphysical essentialism, according to which a scientific demonstration must take as its starting point a set of per se properties of a subject, if these make up a single, unitary definition. The subject of demonstration here is a kind, although not the general kind associated with a discipline, but rather the particular kind that the particular demonstration is about. (shrink)
The focus of this paper are the ethical, legal and social challenges for ensuring the responsible use of “big brain data”—the recording, collection and analysis of individuals’ brain data on a large scale with clinical and consumer-directed neurotechnological devices. First, I highlight the benefits of big data and machine learning analytics in neuroscience for basic and translational research. Then, I describe some of the technological, social and psychological barriers for securing brain data from unwarranted access. In this context, I then (...) examine ways in which safeguards at the hardware and software level, as well as increasing “data literacy” in society, may enhance the security of neurotechnological devices and protect the privacy of personal brain data. Regarding ethical and legal ramifications of big brain data, I first discuss effects on the autonomy, the sense of agency and authenticity, as well as the self that may result from the interaction between users and intelligent, particularly closed-loop, neurotechnological devices. I then discuss the impact of the “datafication” in basic and clinical neuroscience research on the just distribution of resources and access to these transformative technologies. In the legal realm, I examine possible legal consequences that arises from the increasing abilities to decode brain states and their corresponding subjective phenomenological experiences on the hitherto inaccessible privacy of these information. Finally, I discuss the implications of big brain data for national and international regulatory policies and models of good data governance. (shrink)
This is a study that investigated the extent of use of the three principles of ethics – utility, morality, and justice – in managerial ethical decision making, in addition to the personal attitude towards them. It involved undergraduate and graduate business students (total N=163) from the Olayan School of Business in the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. Two kinds of measurements were done: self assessment, and testing with the Saschkin’ s Managerial Value Profile (1997). It showed that morality was the (...) overriding ethical principle used, especially in the graduate group (professionals). Business students still believed in the justice system despite the weakness of the country’s law. Utility was the least used, although males were found to be more utilitarian than females. Finally there was no relation between personal attitudes toward the three ethical principles, and the intentional behavior when faced with ethical dilemmas. The findings were discussed and recommendations were given. (shrink)
The paper develops an objection to the extensional model of time consciousness—the view that temporally extended events or processes, and their temporal properties, can be directly perceived as such. Importantly, following James, advocates of the extensional model typically insist that whole experiences of temporal relations between non-simultaneous events are distinct from mere successions of their temporal parts. This means, presumably, that there ought to be some feature(s) differentiating the former from the latter. I try to show why the extensional models (...) offers no credible ground for positing such a difference. (shrink)
Attention has a role in much of perception, thought, and action. On the erotetic theory, the functional role of attention is a matter of the relationship between questions and what counts as answers to those questions. Questions encode the completion conditions of tasks for cognitive control purposes, and degrees of attention are degrees of sensitivity to the occurrence of answers. Questions and answers are representational contents given precise characterizations using tools from formal semantics, though attention does not depend on language. (...) The erotetic theory proposes an integrated account of attention in cognitive control and of attentional focus in perception. The functional role of attentional focus on objects, properties, and locations has to do with picking out something that corresponds to what a task is ‘about’. The erotetic theory of attention opens new avenues in theorizing about the relationship between attention, representational content, phenomenal character, and practical reason. A novel representationalist account of salience is proposed. The theory also provides an account of distraction that suggests when distraction is a defect in practical reasoning. (shrink)
This book aims to make the pragmatist intellectual framework accessible to organization and management scholars. It presents some fundamental concepts of Pragmatism, their potential application to the study of organizations and the resulting theoretical, methodological, and practical issues.
The aim of this paper is to discuss the “Austro-American” logical empiricism proposed by physicist and philosopher Philipp Frank, particularly his interpretation of Carnap’s Aufbau, which he considered the charter of logical empiricism as a scientific world conception. According to Frank, the Aufbau was to be read as an integration of the ideas of Mach and Poincaré, leading eventually to a pragmatism quite similar to that of the American pragmatist William James. Relying on this peculiar interpretation, Frank intended to bring (...) about a rapprochement between the logical empiricism of the Vienna Circle in exile and American pragmatism. In the course of this project, in the last years of his career, Frank outlined a comprehensive, socially engaged philosophy of science that could serve as a “link between science and philosophy”. (shrink)
Un essai sur la portée épistémologique des instruments d'optique au XVIIe siècle, axé sur les travaux des Anglais, et notamment l'oeuvre de Robert Hooke, qui entre tous a su donner une consistance philosophique au modèle instrumental.
This volume handles in various perspectives the concept of function and the nature of functional explanations, topics much discussed since two major and conflicting accounts have been raised by Larry Wright and Robert Cummins’s papers in the 1970s. Here, both Wright’s ”etiological theory of functions’ and Cummins’s ”systemic’ conception of functions are refined and elaborated in the light of current scientific practice, with papers showing how the ”etiological’ theory faces several objections and may in reply be revisited, while its counterpart (...) became ever more sophisticated, as researchers discovered fresh applications for it. Relying on a firm knowledge of the original positions and debates, this volume presents cutting-edge research evincing the complexities that today pertain in function theory in various sciences. Alongside original papers from authors central to the controversy, work by emerging researchers taking novel perspectives will add to the potential avenues to be followed in the future. Not only does the book adopt no a priori assumptions about the scope of functional explanations, it also incorporates material from several very different scientific domains, e.g. neurosciences, ecology, or technology. In general, functions are implemented in mechanisms; and functional explanations in biology have often an essential relation with natural selection. These two basic claims set the stage for this book’s coverage of investigations concerning both ”functional’ explanations, and the ”metaphysics’ of functions. It casts new light on these claims, by testing them through their confrontation with scientific developments in biology, psychology, and recent developments concerning the metaphysics of realization. Rather than debating a single theory of functions, this book presents the richness of philosophical issues raised by functional discourse throughout the various sciences. Content Level » Research Keywords » Causal role theory of functions - Determination of content - Ecosystem selection - Etiological theory of function - Evolutionary biology - Functional explanations - Historical concepts in biology - Larry Wright - Neurosciences - New mechanism - Selected effects functions - Systemic theory of functions - William Wimsatt Related subjects » Anthropology & Archaeology - Epistemology & Philosophy of Science - Evolutionary & Developmental Biology - Neuroscience - Philosophy TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction.- Section I. Biological functions and functional explanations: genes, cells, organisms and ecosystems.- Part 1.A. Functions, organization and development in life sciences.- Chapter 1. William C. Wimsatt. Evolution and the Stability of Functional Architectures.- Chapter 2. Denis M. Walsh. Teleological Emergence: The Autonomy of Evo-Devo.- Chapter 3. Jean Gayon. Does oxygen have a function, or: where should the regress of biological functions stop?.- Part 1.B. Functional pluralism for biologists? Chapter 4. Frédéric Bouchard. How ecosystem evolution strengthens the case for functional pluralism.- Chapter 5. Robert N. Brandon. A general case for functional pluralism.- Chapter 6. Philippe Huneman. Weak realism in the etiological theory of functions.- Section 2. Section II. Psychology, philosophy of mind and technology: Functions in a man’s world.- Part 2.A. 2A. Metaphysics, function and philosophy of mind.- Chapter 7. Carl Craver. Functions and Mechanisms in Contemporary Neuroscience.- Chapter 8. Carl Gillett. Understanding the sciences through the fog of ”functionalism.’.- 2.B. Philosophy of technology, design and functions.- Chapter 9. Fran¸ coise Longy. Artifacts and Organisms: A Case for a New Etiological Theory of Functions.- Chapter 10. Pieter Vermaas and Wybo Houkes. Functions as Epistemic Highlighters: An Engineering Account of Technical, Biological and Other Functions.- Epilogue.- Larry Wright. Revising teleological explanations: reflections three decades on. (shrink)
Public announcement logic is an extension of multiagent epistemic logic with dynamic operators to model the informational consequences of announcements to the entire group of agents. We propose an extension of public announcement logic with a dynamic modal operator that expresses what is true after any announcement: after which , does it hold that Kφ? We give various semantic results and show completeness for a Hilbert-style axiomatization of this logic. There is a natural generalization to a logic for arbitrary events.
This study complements previous empirical research on the business case for corporate social responsibility (CSR) by employing hitherto unused data on corporate social performance (CSP) and proposing statistical analyses to account for bi-directional causality between social and financial performance. By allowing for differences in the importance of single components of CSP between industries, the data in this study overcome certain limitations of the databases used in earlier studies. The econometrics employed offer a rigorous way of addressing the problem of endogeneity (...) due to simultaneous causality. Although the study’s results provide no evidence that there is a generic or universal business case for CSR, they indicate that there is a strong link between single stakeholder-related issues of CSR and financial performance. However, the analysis does not establish causality within these relationships. (shrink)
In this paper, I argue that looking at the concept of neural function through the lens of cognition alone risks cognitive myopia: it leads neuroscientists to focus only on mechanisms with cognitive functions that process behaviorally relevant information when conceptualizing “neural function”. Cognitive myopia tempts researchers to neglect neural mechanisms with noncognitive functions which do not process behaviorally relevant information but maintain and repair neural and other systems of the body. Cognitive myopia similarly affects philosophy of neuroscience because scholars overlook (...) noncognitive functions when analyzing issues surrounding e.g., functional decomposition or the multifunctionality of neural structures. I argue that we can overcome cognitive myopia by adopting a patchwork approach that articulates cognitive and noncognitive “patches” of the concept of neural function. Cognitive patches describe mechanisms with causally specific effects on cognition and behavior which are likely operative in transforming sensory or other inputs into motor outputs. Noncognitive patches describe mechanisms that lack such specific effects; these mechanisms are enabling conditions for cognitive functions to occur. I use these distinctions to characterize two noncognitive functions at the mesoscale of neural circuits: subsistence functions like breathing are implemented by central pattern generators and are necessary to maintain the life of the organism. Infrastructural functions like gain control are implemented by canonical microcircuits and prevent neural system damage while cognitive processing occurs. By adding conceptual patches that describe these functions, a patchwork approach can overcome cognitive myopia and help us explain how the brain’s capacities as an information processing device are constrained by its ability to maintain and repair itself as a physiological apparatus. (shrink)