Member Awards & Achievements

  • Jackie Sullivan was named a Graham and Gale Wright Distinguished Scholar for 2022-23. This award goes to early or mid-career faculty members in Arts & Humanities who are internationally recognized researchers in their field and have made important contributions to research and graduate education. Learn about her current SSHRC Insight Grant research project, The Philosophy of Neuroscience in Practice, and please join us in congratulating her on this well-deserved award!
  • Two of our members have wonderful job news to share. Nicole Fice, who works in the areas of feminist philosophy, moral philosophy, and applied ethics, accepted a 3-year Limited Term Appointment as Lecturer in Bioethics at Trent University. And Kerry O’Neill has accepted a contract to work as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at McMaster University for the 2022-2023 academic year where she will teach courses in ethics and social/political philosophy. Congratulations & best wishes to both you in these new appointments — we’ll miss you!
  • And last but certainly not least, Derek Oswick, supervised by Michael L. Anderson, defended his PhD thesis titled “Dissolving Nature/Nurture: Development as Coupled Interaction” on May 18. Hearty congratulations to you, Dr. Oswick!


Our members also coordinated a number of events in May & June. Thank you to everyone involved in planning & coordinating these events!

  • Clair Baleshta, Pavle Jovanovic, Jaipreet Mattu, Veljko Simovic & Martin Zelko organized the 2nd annual Rotman Graduate Student Conference, Models and Idealizations, that took place on May 12-13. Eight graduate presentations were given, in addition to keynote lectures by Sarah Gallagher & Angela Potochnik.
  • Sidath Rankaduwa organized the inaugural event for a new series, Dangerous Ideas Seminars. Thank you to Carlo Rovelli for delivering the initial talk! Please reach out to Sid if you’d like to participate in this series this coming fall!
  • Francesca Vidotto and Carlo Rovelli coordinated the Quantum Information Structure of Spacetime (QISS) 2022 conference, held June 6-10. QISS 2022 brought together theorists, philosophers and experimentalists interested in the conceptual basis needed for understanding quantum spacetime, and in the relevance of quantum information to this aim. Thank you to graduate students Yichen Luo, Todd Nagel, Mateo Pascual, Veljko Simovic & Farshid Soltani for providing assistance & helping to make this conference a success!
  • The Rotman Institute was proud to sponsor the 21st annual LMP graduate student conference. This year’s conference was held June 11-12 and was organized by Martin Zelko (chair), Yichen Luo, Antoine Mercier, Nicholas Michieli, and Todd Nagel.

Member News

As always, our members have been busy & have a number of additional items to share. All other news from our members is listed below alphabetically.

  • Michael Barnes gave an invited talk at the University of Toronto’s Centre for Ethics, as part of their Ethics of Protest series. The talk, titled “Whose Tweets? Our Tweets!: The Challenges of Online Protest,” was given online and a recording is available on the Centre’s YouTube page.
  • Barnes also gave an invited talk entitled “The Social Accommodation of Hate Speech” at the Changing Norms of Democratic Rhetoric: Philosophical and Political Perspectives hosted by the University of Genoa.
  • Barnes presented at the 2nd Machine Wisdom Workshop at the University of Pittsburgh. His talk entitled “Working for the Machine” concerns the exploitation of content moderators who clean up social media platforms and the micro-workers who make AI systems work.
  • Rob Corless gave the talk “Algebraic Companions” (based on work with Eunice Chan) at the 24th Conference of the International Linear Algebra Society in Galway.
  • The Open Educational Resource “Computational Discovery on Jupyter” by Neil Calkin, Eunice Chan, and Rob Corless will be published in book form by SIAM Publishing.
  • Rotman alumni members Craig Fox and Marie Gueguen presented at a two-day conference on the history, philosophy and sociology of cosmology and astroparticle physics, organized by the research unit Epistemology of the LHC.
  • A review of Carlo Rovelli’s latest book was featured in the New York Times. Searching for What Connects Us, Carlo Rovelli Explores Beyond Physics. The physicist ranges widely — from black holes to Buddhism to climate change — in his new book, “There Are Places in the World Where Rules Are Less Important Than Kindness.”
  • On June 21, Kerry O’Neill and Maxwell Smith co-led the London Regional Bioethics Network meeting on the topic of priority setting for surgical waitlists.
  • Michael Montess presented the paper “Institutional Trust Between MSM & Healthcare Providers Around PrEP as HIV Prevention” at the Canadian Philosophical Association Conference in May.
  • Montess also presented the poster “How Different Conceptions of Solidarity Affect Responses to Public Health Crises: Learning from HIV/AIDS for COVID-19 & Future Pandemics” at the Oxford Global Health & Bioethics International Conference in June.
  • As part of his role as a member of the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Ethics and Governance Expert Working Group, Maxwell Smith led the drafting of a revised policy brief on COVID-19 and mandatory vaccination: Ethical considerations.
  • Maxwell Smith, along with Faculty of Health Sciences colleague Anita Kothari, published a chapter titled Public Health Policymaking, Politics, and Evidence in the book Integrating Science and Politics for Public Health (Palgrave Macmillan).
  • On June 14, Maxwell Smith presented at Horizon Health Network’s Ethics Grand Rounds. His presentation was titled “Public Health Ethics: Providing Ethics Advice to Policy-Makers During a Pandemic.”

Pictured above: a group photo of attendees at the QISS 2022 conference taken in from of the Physics & Astronomy Building, a group photo of RGSC 2022 conference attendees on the patio behind WIRB, and Derek Oswick enjoying a drink from the goblet of knowledge following his successful PhD defence.