Publications by EENPS members
Information about recent publications by the members of the EENPS
We are starting a new activity in scope of the EENPS with the goal of promoting and amplifying the research by our members.
The idea is that we circulate our new and recent research output through website and our social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter). We plan to also circulate your research through our mailing list, but to not clutter your inboxes too much, we will just make an occasional digest containing the info about multiple new papers.
If you would like us to showcase your recent research, please send the following to firstname.lastname@example.org:
1. Name(s) and affiliation(s) of the author(s)
2. Title of your paper
3. Short abstract (feel free to use the abstract of the paper)
4. Link to the paper (DOI link is the most reliable, but other links are OK too)
5. If you are on Twitter, your username, so we can tag you.
All EENPS members are welcome to participate.
Publications are listed by year, then in alphabetical order (first author's first name).
Published in 2021
Mariusz Maziarz (Interdisciplinary Centre for Ethics and Institute of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University, Kraków, Poland),
Martin Zach (Department of Analytic Philosophy, Institute of Philosophy, Czech Academy of Sciences)
Assessing the quality of evidence from epidemiological agent-based models for the COVID-19 pandemic. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences, 43(1).
Agent-based models (ABMs) are one of the main sources of evidence for decisions regarding mitigation and suppression measures against the spread of SARS-CoV-2. These models have not been previously included in the hierarchy of evidence put forth by the evidence-based medicine movement, which prioritizes those research methods that deliver results less susceptible to the risk of confounding. We point out the need to assess the quality of evidence delivered by ABMs and ask the question of what is the risk that assumptions entertained in ABMs do not include all the key factors and make model predictions susceptible to the problem of confounding.
Natalia Carrillo and Tarja Knuuttila (University of Vienna)
“An artefactual perspective on idealization: Galvanic cells and electric circuits in nerve signal research.” In: Alejandro Cassini y Juan Redmond (ed.) Models and Idealizations in Science: Fictional and Artefactual Approaches (Cham: Springer).
There are two traditions of thinking about idealization offering almost opposite views on their functioning and epistemic status. While one tradition views idealizations as epistemic deficiencies, the other one highlights the epistemic benefits of idealization. Both of these accounts agree in that idealizations are deliberate misrepresentations. In this article, we approach idealization from the artifactual account of models, comparing it to the traditional accounts of idealization as misrepresentation, and exemplifying it through the case of the Hodgkin and Huxley model of nerve impulse. From the artifactual perspective, the epistemic benefits and deficiencies introduced by idealization frequently come in a package due to the way idealization draws together different resources in model construction. Accordingly, idealization tends to be holistic in that it is not often easily attributable to just some specific parts of the model. We argue that the artifactual approach lends a unifying view into idealization in that it is able to recover several basic philosophical insights motivating both the deficiency and epistemic benefit accounts, being simultaneously detached from the idea of distortion by misrepresentation.
Keywords: scientific modeling, representation, artifactual account, Hodgkin and Huxley Model
Link: https://philpapers.org/rec/KNUAAP, https://www.springer.com/gp/book/9783030658014
Tomáš Marvan (Institute of Philosophy, Czech Academy of Sciences), Marek Havlík (National Institute of Mental Health, Klecany)
Is Predictive Processing a Theory of Perceptual Consciousness? New Ideas in Psychology 61.
Predictive Processing theory, hotly debated in neuroscience, psychology and philosophy, promises to explain a number of perceptual and cognitive phenomena in a simple and elegant manner. In some of its versions, the theory is ambitiously advertised as a new theory of conscious perception. The task of this paper is to assess whether this claim is realistic. We will be arguing that the Predictive Processing theory cannot explain the transition from unconscious to conscious perception in its proprietary terms. The explanations offer by PP theorists mostly concern the preconditions of conscious perception, leaving the genuine material substrate of consciousness untouched.
Published in 2020
Agustina Borella (ESEADE University Institute, Argentina)
TRAZOS Ensayos de Filosofía para el Mundo Social. Grupo Unión, Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires.
Entender algo sobre un mundo que se nos presenta de modo desordenado e incompleto constituye buena parte de la tarea de la filosofía y de la ciencia.
La racionalidad, los modelos, y el mundo social introducen preocupaciones propias de la filosofía de la ciencia en general y de la epistemología de la economía en particular.
Los aportes de Popper, Lawson, Mäki, Hayek y Cartwright se expresan en estos trazos como intentos abiertos para alcanzar a comprender nuestro mundo.
To understand something about a world, that is presented to us in a disorderly and incomplete way, is a large part of the task of philosophy and science.
Rationality, models and the social world introduce specific issues of philosophy of science in general and of epistemology of economics in particular.
The contributions of Popper, Lawson, Maki, Hayek and Cartwright are expressed in these strokes as open attempts to understand our world.
Link to the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08FMSXNQV/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_dp_DcSnFb3XRPQQH?fbclid=IwAR1XsryCgzcCZjlbztz_hI17g1XMm0FFSpPDKNff11um1p03I3_qHmiqDi8
Anguel S. Stefanov (Institute of Philosophy and Sociology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)
Space and Time: Philosophical Problems. Minkowski Institute Press, Montreal.
The monograph comprises interconnected philosophical analyses of issues related to the nature of space, time and spacetime – that of the very existence of space and time, transcendental philosophy of space and time, whether there exists a middle way between the A- and B-theories of time, the growing block theory, the phenomenology of temporal passage, whether time flows at any rate, the relationalist-substantivalist debate and time travel. Two essays on Zeno’s paradoxes and on the arrow of time and irreversible processes are included as appendices. The book can also serve as a textbook of a course on the philosophy of space, time and spacetime.
Benjamin Wilck (Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department of Philosophy)
Euclid’s Kinds and (Their) Attributes. History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis, 23(2), 362-397.
Relying upon a very close reading of all of the definitions given in Euclid’s Elements, I argue that this mathematical treatise contains a philosophical treatment of mathematical objects. Specifically, I show that Euclid draws elaborate metaphysical distinctions between (i) substances and non-substantial attributes of substances, (ii) different kinds of substance, and (iii) different kinds of non-substance. While the general meta-physical theory adopted in the Elements resembles that of Aristotle in many respects, Euclid does not employ Aristotle’s terminology, or indeed, any philosophical terminology at all. Instead, Euclid systematically uses different types of definition to distinguish between metaphysically different kinds of mathematical object.
Benjamin Wilck (Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department of Philosophy)
Can the Pyrrhonian Sceptic Suspend Belief Regarding Scientific Definitions?: Geometry and Scepticism Reconsidered. History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis, 23(1), 253-288.
In this article, I tackle a heretofore unnoticed difficulty with the application of Pyrrhonian scepticism to science. Sceptics can suspend belief regarding a dogmatic proposition only by setting up opposing arguments or considerations for and against that proposition. Since Sextus provides arguments exclusively against particular geometrical definitions in Adversus Mathematicos III, commentators have argued that Sextus’ method is not scepticism, but negative dogmatism. However, commentators have overlooked the fact that arguments or considerations in favour of particular geometrical definitions were absent in ancient geometry, and hence unavailable to Sextus. While this might explain why they are also absent from Sextus’ text, I survey and evaluate various strategies to supply arguments in support of particular geometrical definitions.
Borut Trpin (MCMP/LMU Munich)
Jeffrey conditionalization: proceed with caution. Philosophical Studies, 177(10), 2985-3012.
It has been argued that if the rigidity condition is satisfied, a rational agent operating with uncertain evidence should update her subjective probabilities by Jeffrey conditionalization (JC) or else a series of bets resulting in a sure loss could be made against her (the Dynamic Dutch Book Argument). We show, however, that even if the rigidity condition is satisfied, it is not always safe to update probability distributions by JC because there exist such sequences of non-misleading uncertain observations where it may be foreseen that an agent who updates her subjective probabilities by JC will end up nearly certain that a false hypothesis is true. We analyze the features of JC that lead to this problem, specify the conditions in which it arises and respond to potential objections.
Tomáš Marvan (Institute of Philosophy, Czech Academy of Sciences), Michal Polák (University of West Bohemia, Pilsen)
Generality and content-specificity in the study of the neural correlates of perceptual consciousness. Philosophy and the Mind Sciences, 1(II).
The claim of this paper is that the NCC notion, as applied to conscious perceptual episodes, needs to be reconceptualized. It mixes together the processing related to the perceived contents and the neural substrate of consciousness proper, i.e. mechanisms making the perceptual contents conscious. We thus propose that the perceptual NCC be divided into two constitutive subnotions. The main theoretical idea that emerges as a consequence of this reconceptualization is that the neural correlate of a perceptual episode is formed in the neural interaction between content-processing and consciousness-conferring mechanisms. The paper elaborates this distinction, marshals some initial arguments in its favour, and tests it against some of the most debated theories of consciousness.
Vassil Vidinsky (Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”)
(Post) phenomenological Approach to Homo Sapiens Technicus. Balkan Journal of Philosophy, 12(1), 31-36.
In this paper I use a (post)phenomenological approach to clarify the objective cultural expansion of our technology. Thus, I establish a conceptual analogy between two different philosophical analyses of human–machine relations – one historical and one phenomenological. I develop the analogy between them and their corresponding concepts in several steps. (1) First, I present the Homo sapiens technicus tendency and then the phenomenological differentiation between body schema and body image. All of these elucidate our involvement with machines. (2) Then, I conceptualize the term ‘context’, coupling its structural stability with the idea of distextaulity in order to achieve a better empirical understanding of our technological contradictions. (3) I continue to develop and enrich the analogy by illuminating the functional similarities – fluid boundary, automation, complexity – between contextual structures on the one hand and body schemata on the other. (4) Finally, I explore a deeper causal and narrative connection between those strands, shedding light on an interesting twofold circularity: a circular causation and a double narrative within Homo sapiens technicus.
Vlasta Sikimić (University of Tübingen), Tijana Nikitović (University of Belgrade), Miljan Vasić (University of Belgrade) & Vanja Subotić (University of Belgrade)
Do Political Attitudes Matter for Epistemic Decisions of Scientists? Review of Philosophy and Psychology
The epistemic attitudes of scientists, such as epistemic tolerance and authoritarianism, play important roles in the discourse about rivaling theories. Epistemic tolerance stands for the mental attitude of an epistemic agent, e.g., a scientist, who is open to opposing views, while epistemic authoritarianism represents the tendency to uncritically accept views of authorities. Another relevant epistemic factor when it comes to the epistemic decisions of scientists is the skepticism towards the scientific method. However, the question is whether these epistemic attitudes are influenced by their sociopolitical counterparts, such as the researcher’s degree of conservatism. To empirically investigate the interplay between epistemic and sociopolitical attitudes of scientists, we conducted a survey with researchers (N = 655) across different disciplines. We propose scales for measuring epistemic tolerance and epistemic authoritarianism, as well as a scale for detecting the participants' readiness to question the scientific method. Furthermore, we investigate the relationship between epistemic tolerance and epistemic authoritarianism on the one hand, and career stage and sociopolitical views on the other hand. Interestingly, our study found only small correlations between the participants' degree of conservatism and their epistemic attitudes. This suggests that sociopolitical views, against common argumentation, actually do not play an important role in one’s scientific decisions. Moreover, social scientists scored higher on the epistemic tolerance and lower on the epistemic authoritarianism scale than natural scientists. Finally, the results indicate that natural scientists question the scientific method less than social scientists.