Klodian Coko 2017-09-18T10:46:56+00:00

Project Description

RESEARCH AREAS:

  • Integrated History and Philosophy of Science

  • History and Philosophy of Scientific Methods

  • History and Philosophy of Experimental Practices

CONTACT:

KLODIAN COKO

Postdoctoral Fellow;
Department of Philosophy, Western University

I was born in Albania, but spent most of my formative years in Athens, Greece. I received BA and MA degrees in Methodology, History, and Theory of Science from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. In 2008, I moved to the US where I received MA and PhD degrees in History and Philosophy of Science from Indiana University (in 2010 and 2015, respectively). In the Fall 2014 term, I was a pre-doctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin, Germany. During the 2016-17 academic year, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the Sidney M. Edelstein Center for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel.

My research focuses on the historical emergence and development of scientific methods. To investigate the history of scientific methods, an integration of philosophy of science with historical and empirical accounts of scientific practice is crucial. In my doctoral research, I used such an integrative approach to investigate the methodological strategy of establishing the same result by means of independent scientific procedures. My current research project focuses on the historical and philosophical problems surrounding the methodological strategy of replicating experimental results.

My research program focuses on the emergence and development of scientific methods. To investigate the history of scientific methods, an integration of philosophy of science with historical and empirical accounts of scientific practice is crucial. I utilized such an integrated approach in my dissertation on The Structure and Epistemic Import of Empirical Multiple Determination in Scientific Practice. I examined the epistemic strategy of establishing the same result by means of different and independent procedures. To understand the epistemic significance and structure of this strategy, I analyzed its historical emergence, development, and use in actual scientific practice. I focused on the role this strategy played in nineteenth century investigations on the cause of the phenomenon of Brownian movement, and especially in Jean Perrin’s experimental work on the height distribution, mean displacement, and mean rotation of Brownian particles, in the beginning of the twentieth century. In addition, I used this analysis to develop a general conceptual framework for understanding the structure and epistemic import of arguments that rely on the application of the multiple determination strategy. My dissertation is a contribution to the history of nineteenth and early twentieth century physical chemistry and helps in understanding important features of twentieth century philosophy. It also shows that the integrated approach is fruitful also on the meta-level, as an investigation of the interaction of general philosophy of science with concrete historical and empirical accounts of scientific practice.

My current research project focuses on the history and philosophy of experimental replication. There is currently a widespread public perception that scientific activity is in the midst of a (so-called) ‘replication crisis’. Many important findings published in leading scientific journals are considered not to be as strong as originally claimed because they are found difficult or impossible to replicate. In general, it is estimated that more than half of the experimental findings published in journals in medicine, biology, economics, clinical medicine, and animal research are inflated and difficult to replicate. Although the extent and severity of this ‘replication crisis’ need to be further evaluated, it seems that this situation, more than revealing the existence of a fatal flaw at the heart of modern scientific activity, shows that our general understanding of the complexities surrounding the replication of experimental procedures and experimental findings is rather limited.

My research project aims to remedy this situation by providing a detailed understanding of the nature of experimental replication. More specifically, it addresses the following questions: What does it mean to replicate an experimental procedure? What does it mean to replicate an experimental result? What are the criteria for a successful replication? What are the reasons for replicating an experiment? What is the epistemic import of replication? To what extent does replication characterize current scientific practices? How does replication compare with other strategies that researchers use to confirm and validate their experimental procedures and experimental results? How have the answers to these questions changed through time and across disciplines?

The distinctive feature of my approach is that it tries to understand the nature of the various practices constituting replication by paying attention to their historical emergence and development; by paying attention to the historical context in which these practices originally emerged and to how they morphed into current practices. This approach is based on the historicist conviction that to understand why science uses certain practices and strategies, requires attention to how science came to consider, adopt, and develop these practices and strategies. My approach not only helps solving the philosophical disagreements regarding the epistemic role, epistemic import, and relevance of replication for actual scientific practice, but (at a meta-level) it also suggests a fruitful way of interaction between philosophy of science and historical accounts of scientific practices.

Articles

Coko, K. Epistemology of a Believing Historian: Making Sense of Duhem’s Anti-atomism.

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, Part A 2015; 50: 71-82.        

Schickore J, Coko, K. Using Multiple Means of Determination. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 2013; 27: 295-313.

Book Review

Coko K, Schickore, J. Robustness, Solidity, and Multiple Determinations. Metascience 2013; 22: 681-83. Review of Characterizing the Robustness of Science after the Practice Turn in the Philosophy of Science, Soler et al. eds., Boston Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science 2012; 292, Springer.

Work in Progress

The Structure and Epistemic Import of Multiple Determination in Empirical Science. Book project with the University of Pittsburgh Press.

Jean Perrin and the Philosophers’ Stories: The Role of Experimental Multiple Determination in Determining Avogadro’s Number. Article, advanced draft.

The Multiple Dimensions of Multiple Determination. Article, advanced draft.

Towards a Mutually Beneficial Integration of History and Philosophy of Science: The Case of Jean Perrin. Book chapter, in progress. To appear in The Past, The Present, The Future of iHPS 2018, Taylor & Francis.

Doctoral Thesis

The Structure and Epistemic Import of Empirical Multiple Determination in Scientific Practice. Indiana University 2015. Committee: Jutta Schickore (chair), Jordi Cat, Elisabeth A. Lloyd, Mark Kaplan

Invited Talks

The Structure and Epistemic Import of Multiple Determination in Scientific Practice, Philosophy Department Colloquium, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel, May 2017.

On the Multiple Determination of Experimental Results, Edelstein Colloquium, The Edelstein Center for the History and Philosophy of Science, Technology and Medicine, Jerusalem, Israel, May 2017.

The Historical and Philosophical Roots of Empirical Multiple Determination, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel, April 2017.

The Multiple Dimensions of Multiple Determination, The Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel, March 2017.

Epistemology of a Believing Historian: Making Sense of Duhem’s Anti-Atomism, Hanson Lecture, Department of History and Philosophy of Science Colloquium, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, USA, September 2015.

The Role of Experimental Multiple Determination in the Work of Jean Perrin, Friedrich Steinle’s Colloquium in the History of Science, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany, October 2014.

The Role of Experimental Triangulation in Determining Avogadro’s Number, Group of Modern Physics, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin, Germany, October 2014.

Conference Presentations

The Structure and Epistemological Implications of Multiple Determination in Empirical Science, Epsa17, The 6th Biennial Conference of European Philosophy of Science Association, Exeter, UK, September 2017.

The Multiple Dimensions of Multiple Determination, The Israeli Philosophical Association 20thAnnual Conference, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel, February 2017.

Towards a Mutually Beneficial Integration of H and P of S: The Case of Jean Perrin,

The Past, Present and Future of Integrated HPS: An International Postgraduate Forum, Centre for History and Philosophy of Science, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK, January 2017.

The Multiple Dimensions of Multiple Determination, Third Lisbon International Conference on Philosophy of Science: Contemporary Issues, Lisbon, Portugal, December 2016.

The Structure and Epistemic Import of Experimental Multiple Determination: The Case of Jean Perrin, 11th International Conference in History of Philosophy of Science (HOPOS), Minneapolis, MN, USA, June 2016.

The Structure and Epistemic Import of Empirical Multiple Determination, Évora’s 6th Symposium in Philosophy of Science and Technology, Évora, Portugal, November 2015.

Jean Perrin and the Philosophers’ Stories: A Case-Study on the role of Case-Studies in Integrated History and Philosophy of Science, 5th International Conference on Integrated History and Philosophy of Science (&HPS5), Vienna, Austria, June 2014.

Epistemology of a Believing Historian, 9th International Conference in History of Philosophy of Science (HOPOS), Halifax, Canada, June 2012.

Epistemology of a Believer: Making Sense of Duhem’s Anti-Atomism, 4th International Conference on Integrated History and Philosophy of Science (&HPS4), Athens, Greece, March 2012.

Summer, 2013, Science Revolutions: Plato to NATO, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, primary instructor).

Spring, 2013, The War between Religion and Science? Perspectives on a Historical Antithesis, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, primary instructor).

Fall, 2012, The War between Religion and Science? Perspectives on a Historical Antithesis, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, primary instructor).

Spring, 2012, Science Revolutions: Plato to NATO, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, primary instructor).

Fall, 2011, Science Revolutions: Plato to NATO, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, primary instructor).

Fall, 2010, The Scientific Revolution, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, associate instructor, primary instructor: Domenico Bertoloni Meli).

Fall, 2009, Evolution, Religion, and Society, Indiana University Bloomington, (undergraduate level course, associate instructor, primary instructor: Elisabeth A. Lloyd).