Our first piece of exciting news in this bi-monthly post comes from Craig Fox. Craig (supervised by Chris Smeenk) defended his PhD thesis tilted “An Empiricist Defense of Scientific Stories About the Past” on March 18th via Zoom. Congratulations, Craig! Our next piece of exciting news comes from Rotman alumna Marie Gueguen. Marie was awarded an MSCA Marie Curie fellowship with a score of 98.8. She will be one of the first philosophers of science hosted in a Physics institute in France and will be working on astro chemistry. Rotman alumna Eunice Chan also had exciting news recently. Eunice was awarded the UBC Early Career Lecture Award and  gave her award lecture at UBC via Zoom on March 5th. More award related news come from Sarah Gallagher, who was the recipient of the Purvis Memorial Award given by CanCOVID for rapidly mobilizing knowledge to help with pandemic response. Please join us in congratulating Craig, Marie, Eunice and Sarah on these fantastic achievements!

In February, the philosophy of cognitive science reading group hosted Karen Adolph for a virtual talk on her 2019 paper, “Motor development: Embodied, embedded, enculturated, and enabling”. Karen’s talk can be viewed on our Youtube channel. In February and March, Vicente Raja and Max Dresow gave virtual talks as part of the Emerging Minds Colloquium Series. Vicente’s talk “Bean-In-The-World: On the Complexity of Plant Behavior” in which he discussed the complexity of plant movement and plant behaviour took place on February 10th, and Max’s talk “Measuring Time with Fossils: A Start-Up Problem in Stratigraphic Geology” examined a start-up problem that arose in the attempt to construct a trans-national geological time scale on the basis of (mostly) fossil evidence took place on March 5th.

All other news & announcements from our members are listed below in alphabetical order.

Benjamin Chin-Yee was invited to present Grand Rounds at Sunnybrook Hospital and spoke on the topic of “Shared Decision Making and Epistemic Injustice.” In his talk, he argued that recognizing the many forms of epistemic injustice in healthcare is important to help develop a concept of shared decision making that is better oriented towards equity and social justice. Benjamin also published a book review in in Philosophy of Medicine.

Sarah Gallagher was a panelist on the Astronomy today, Framing the future: International Day of Women & Girls in STEM online event on February 11.

Adam Koberinski had a paper published in Foundations of Physics titled “Regularizing (away) vacuum energy”

Joshua Luczak gave an online presentation titled “Climate Denialism is Harmful Bullshit.” at the Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science Annual Conference; and at the Georgia Philosophical Society: Conference on Philosophical Perspectives on Contemporary Problems.

Vicente Raja, Ed Baggs and other members of the EMRG lab had a paper titled “The Markov Blanket Trick: On the Scope of the Free Energy Principle and Active Inference” published.

A review of Carlo Rovelli’s book Helgoland was published in the Sunday Times  and The Guardian.

Rotman alumnus Jamie Shaw had a book come out. The book, titled “Interpreting Feyerabend: Critical Essays” is a collection of essays that interpret and critically evaluate the philosophy of Paul Feyerabend.

Chris Smeenk gave a talk titled “Decoupling from the Initial State?” at the Cosmology Beyond Spacetime series webinar put together by the Center for Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh.

An article in Western News, “Human rights law provides transparent, fair framework for vaccine allocations“, discussed a recent paper co-authored by Max Smith, that promotes a human rights approach to vaccine distribution that considers social vulnerability along with medical needs in decision-making.

Catherine Stinson hosted a panel discussion on the film Coded Bias with Llana James and Bretton Fosbrook as speakers. Catherine also did an interview for an episode of the Wondros Podcast called “We’re the Flaw in the Algorithm”

Jackie Sullivan’s paper, “Understanding Stability in Cognitive Neuroscience Through Hacking’s Lens” was published in the journal Philosophical Inquiries. Jackie also moderated a panel on the Ethics of Neurotechnology for Western’s Society of Neuroscience Graduate Students’ Neuroscience Research Day. The Panel included Gabriel Lazaro-Munoz (Baylor College of Medicine), Tim Brown (University of Washington) and Laura Cabrera (Michigan State University). She also gave a talk titled “Touchscreens, Open Science and the Epistemic Community” as part of touchscreencognition.org‘s Mouse Translational Research Accelerator Platform (MouseTRAP) Seminar Series, organized by Julie Dumont in Western’s Translational Cognitive Neuroscience (TCN) lab.

Francesca Vidotto gave a talk titled “Can physics be feminist?” at a webinar put together by GEMF.

An article posted on PharmaPhorum about the UK’s first COVID-19 challenge study included comments from Charles Weijer. 

Pictured above: Craig Fox holding up his poster after defending his thesis; Sarah Gallagher receiving her award via Zoom; Students during Vicente Raja’s talk; Karen Adolph’s virtual talk; Benjamin Chin-Yee presenting Grand Rounds at Sunnybrook Hospital virtually; Jackie Sullivan giving a talk at the mouseTRAP seminar series.