The three-yearly conference of Italian Society for Logic and Philosophy of Science (SILFS) has taken place in Bergamo, the 15th, 16th and 17th December 2010. The charming venue has been the former convent of Sant’Agostino, nowadays University of Bergamo. The conference program has been structured distinguishing plenary and parallel sessions: the first ones were 40 minutes long and designed for international guests: S. Abramsky from the Wolfson College of Oxford, A. Hagar from Indiana University, P. Janich from (...) Philipps Universitaet of Marburg and S. Okasha from University of Bristol. The complete program of the conference can be downloaded here: . We followed all the plenary sessions, and the first part of our report concerns them. There is just the exception of professor S. Psillos’ talk, which was indeed programmed, but didn’t take place due to greek unrest of the last December. The second part of our report concers the parallel sessions, that were 20 minutes long and designed for concurrent talks split between subject areas. We will keep this division into areas in our report and we chose four talks per area. However, it must be said that we had not watch the parallel sessions completely, since their being simoultaneous. This means that our review of the conference will be perspective, both because of subjective standpoint and because of the mentioned limitation. Still we hope we can offer a quite complete picture of the three-days conference, as we hope this overview may be considered as a general review of it. Just a few words must be still said to introduce to our review. The structure of each review will consists in a presentation of the talk’s author(s) (which we faithfully copy hereinafter) followed by a brief remark by us. Since many compliments could be surely done to the SILFS’ organization and to the University of Bergamo, an overall effect seems hard to be drawn, because of some arising perplexities. Although these are just our shared impressions about the conference, we think they must be remembered. One could note outward that the conference have had three official languages: English, French and Italian. Apparently, this is something that has not been justified since French has been useless and Italian has often prevented the comprehension by foreigner attendance. Many defections have taken place, something that could be said about the conformity with the program (in spite of the high number of speeches). Of course these defections have been caused by different reasons, but they become an indication of lack of professionalism as the number grows. Coming to an estimation of the inner issues, first we are seriously puzzled about the selection criterion (if any) which the SILFS has chosen the invited speakers with. One can notice that excellent talks have been put together to shallow speech without substantial scientific commitment. One has to keep in mind that who is just worthless, much lowers the general level. The topics have been various, although many were historical reconstruction and the "historiographic" approach in the study of Philosophy of Science seems therefore prevailing. Those talks whose subject was Logic and its applications, have been the highest-quality ones, by the fact that they were close to contemporary researches. More specifically, we would like to quote those concerning Quantum Computation and Logic of Quantum Mechanics. Talks of Philosophy of Biology and Cognitive Science were first-rate works, too, having showed high proficiency, though even specialistic topics were often technically handled, to the detriment of laymen (as us). (shrink)
__The Conduct of Inquiry in International Relations_ first edition was winner of the ISA-Northeast’s Yale H. Ferguson Award, and the ISA Theory Section’s Best Book of the Year award._ _The Conduct of Inquiry in International Relations_ provides an introduction to the philosophy of science issues and their implications for the study of global politics. The author draws attention to the problems caused by the misleading notion of a single unified scientific method, and proposes a framework that clarifies (...) the variety of ways that IR scholars establish the authority and validity of their empirical claims. Jackson connects philosophical considerations with concrete issues of research design within neopositivist, critical realist, analyticist, and reflexive approaches to the study of world politics. Envisioning a pluralist science for a global IR field, this volume organizes the significant differences between methodological stances so as to promote internal consistency, public discussion, and worldly insight as the hallmarks of any scientific study of world politics. In this second edition, Jackson has centralised the philosophical history of the ‘science question’ into a single chapter, providing a clearer picture of the connections between contemporary concerns about the status of knowledge and classic philosophical debates about the relationship between human beings and the world they inhabit. The central chapters feature more detailed and pedagogically useful illustrations of the methodological positions discussed, making the book even better suited to clarify the philosophical distinctions with respect to which a scientific researcher must locate herself. The second edition will continue to be essential reading for all students and scholars of International Relations, Political Science and Philosophy of Science. (shrink)
There is an ongoing methodological debate in Philosophy of Science concerning the use of case studies as evidence for and/or against theories about science. In this paper, I aim to make a contribution to this debate by taking an empirical approach. I present the results of a systematic survey of the PhilSci-Archive, which suggest that a sizeable proportion of papers in Philosophy of Science contain appeals to case studies, as indicated by the occurrence of the (...) indicator words “case study” and/or “case studies.” These results are confirmed by data mined from the JSTOR database on research articles published in leading journals in the field: Philosophy of Science, the British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (BJPS), and the Journal for General Philosophy of Science (JGPS), as well as the Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association (PSA). The data also show upward trends in appeals to case studies in articles published in Philosophy of Science, the BJPS, and the JGPS. The empirical work I have done for this paper provides philosophers of science who are wary of the use of case studies as evidence for and/or against theories about science with a way to do Philosophy of Science that is informed by data rather than case studies. (shrink)
El perfeccionamiento de la disciplina Filosofía y Sociedad en la Educación Superior es una de la exigencias en los Lineamientos al VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba lo cual contribuye a la preparación de un profesional a la altura de los cambios científico tecnológicos que actualmente despliega la Educación Médica Superior cubana. Para el logro de este propósito se aplicó la simulación educativa como herramienta didáctica avanzada en temas de Ciencia Tecnología y Sociedad en la disciplina Filosofía y Sociedad, (...) la que permitió a los educandos desarrollar habilidades investigativas, un pensamiento científico, político, económico y social así como elevar su nivel creativo y productivo. Development of the discipline of Philosophy and Society in Higher Education is one of the requirements in the guidelines to the 6th Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba which contributes to the preparation of a professional at the height of the scientific-technological changes that Cuban Higher Medical Education currently deploys. For the achievement of this purpose the educational simulation was applied as a teaching tool advanced in terms of science, technology and society in the discipline of Philosophy and Society, which helped the students to develop research skills, scientific, political, economic and social thinking as well as raise their creative and productive level. (shrink)
This is the first English translation of Schelling's Ideas for a Philosophy of Nature (first published in 1797 and revised in 1803), one of the most significant works in the German tradition of philosophy of nature and early nineteenth-century philosophy of science. It stands in opposition to the Newtonian picture of matter as constituted by inert, impenetrable particles, and argues instead for matter as an equilibrium of active forces that engage in dynamic polar opposition to one (...) another. In the revisions of 1803 Schelling incorporated this dialectical view into a neo-Platonic conception of an original unity divided upon itself. The text is of more than simply historical interest: its daring and original vision of nature, philosophy, and empirical science will prove absorbing reading for all philosophers concerned with post-Kantian German idealism, for scholars of German Romanticism, and for historians of science. (shrink)
An account of presentations at an historic (4/30/1977) meeting of the recently formed Society for Philosophy and Technology in conjunction with the Western Division of the American Philosophical Association in Chicago. Speakers on theoretical topics included David Lovekin, Michael Zimmerman, Bernard Gendron and Nancy Holmstrom, and several individuals involved in "outreach activities.".
Book reviews in this journal usually proceed by considering the value of the book in question for Dewey scholarship. In this case I would rather say that this book is of interest to Dewey scholars. Jackson’s general project is heavily informed by Dewey’s pluralistic brand of pragmatism. As Jackson notes “Dewey’s Logic . . . stand[s] firmly in the tradition leading to this book” (216). Dewey scholars will greet Jackson’s extension of this approach to the study of international relations (...) warmly. Over the last thirty years, international relations specialists have debated the merits of a variety of methodological and philosophical options while at the same time a dominant theme has been to make the field .. (shrink)
In recent years, some have claimed that a Darwinian perspective will revolutionize the study of human society and culture. This project is viewed with disdain and suspicion, on the other hand, by many practicing social scientists. This article seeks to clear the air in this heated debate by dissociating two claims that are too often assumed to be inseparable. The first is the ‘ontological’ claim that Darwinian principles apply, at some level of abstraction, to human society and (...) culture. The second is the more ‘pragmatic’ claim that this observation necessitates substantial changes in the practices of social scientists. Even if some version of the first claim is true, I argue – which I believe is quite likely – the second does not follow. This observation ought to chasten the most overzealous advocates of Darwinian social science, as well as softening the instinctive resistance of many social scientists and historians to the genuine insights enabled by a Darwinian approach. The conclusion discusses these insights, the most important of which is a methodological prescription for normative theory. (shrink)
In an influential article, A. I. Sabra identified an intellectual trend from twelfth and thirteenth-century Andalusia which he described as the ‘‘Andalusian revolt against Ptolemaic astronomy.” Philosophers such as Ibn Rushd , Ibn Tufayl , and Maimonides objected to Ptolemy’s theories on philosophic grounds, not because of shortcomings in the theories' predictive accuracy. Sabra showed how al-Bitrūjī's Kitāb al-Hay'a attempted to account for observed planetary motions in a way that met the philosophic standards of those philosophers and others. In Nūr (...) al-‘ālam , the subject of this article, Joseph ibn Joseph ibn Nahmias endeavoured to improve upon al-Bitrūjī’s models. Levi Ben Gerson's Hebrew writings on astronomy criticized al-Bitrūjī, but Ibn Nahmias did not mention them. Nūr al-‘ālam deserves attention, too, because it is the first Arabic text on theoretical astronomy by a Jewish author to come to light. In the body of this article, I will describe and analyze Ibn Nahmias’ theory, from Nūr al-‘ālam , for the motion of the sun. (shrink)
Three scientific societies devoted to the study of reproduction were established in Britain, France and USA in the middle of the twentieth century by clinical, veterinary and agricultural scientists. The principal motivation for their establishment had been the study of sterility and fertility of people and livestock. There was also a wider perspective embracing other biologists interested in reproduction more generally. Knowledge disseminated through the societies’ scientific meetings and publications would bear upon human and animal population problems as (...) well as basic reproductive physiology and its applications. New journals dealing with reproductive physiology, having worldwide appeal, were established in Britain and USA. The financial resources of at least one of the societies and its journal are directed towards charitable functions, including financial support for travel to scientific meetings, for visits to particular laboratories, and for research in the short term, including that of undergraduates. Perhaps the example of the British society has given rise to others having a more specialised focus, as well as to the formation of the European Society for the Study of Human Reproduction and Embryology. (shrink)
The Conduct of Inquiry in International Relations Content Type Journal Article Category Review Pages 532-534 DOI 10.1558/jcr.v11i4.532 Authors Mehran Mazinani, University of Utah, 215 S Central Campus DR, Rm 250, Salt Lake City 84112, USA Journal Journal of Critical Realism Online ISSN 1572-5138 Print ISSN 1476-7430 Journal Volume Volume 11 Journal Issue Volume 11, Number 4 / 2012.
The central debate of natural theology among medieval Muslims and Jews concerned whether or not the world was eternal. Opinions divided sharply on this issue because the outcome bore directly on God's relationship with the world: eternity implies a deity bereft of will, while a world with a beginning leads to the contrasting picture of a deity possessed of will. In this exhaustive study of medieval Islamic and Jewish arguments for eternity, creation, and the existence of God, Herbert (...) Davidson provides a systematic classification of the proofs, analyzes and explains them, and traces their sources in Greek philosophy. Throughout the study, Davidson tries to take into account every argument of a philosophical character, disregarding only those arguments that rest entirely on religious faith or which fall below a minimal level of plausibility. (shrink)