Project Description

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Eric Desjardins

RESEARCH AREAS:

  • Philosophy of Biology

  • Philosophy of Science

  • Environmental Philosophy

CONTACT:

  • Rotman Institute of Philosophy
    Western University
    Western Interdisciplinary Research Building, 7168
    London, Ontario, Canada
    N6A 3K7

ERIC DESJARDINS

Associate Director – Rotman Institute of Philosophy;
Associate Professor,
Department of Philosophy, Western University

Eric Desjardins is Associate Professor in the Philosophy Department at Western University and the Associate Director of the Rotman Institute of Philosophy. He works on the normative dimensions of historical contingency and biological entanglement in various life sciences. The main goals of his research are 1) to clarify the meaning of and relation between these two notions, 2) explore and develop conceptual frameworks that can explain their relevance in various disciplines (especially experimental evolution and ecology), and 3) show how these frameworks can be used in promoting more effective and ethical decision making in an increasingly human-impacted world. Desjardins received his Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of British Columbia.

ARTICLES and BOOK

  • G Barker, E Desjardins and T Pearce (eds.) (2013) Entangled Life : Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences, Springer Series: History, Philosophy & Theory of the Life Sciences. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer.
  • Beatty, J., & Desjardins, E. (2009). Natural selection and history. Biology & Philosophy, 24(2), 231–246. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10539-008-9149-3
  • Desjardins, E. (2011). Historicity and experimental evolution. Biology & Philosophy, 26(3), 339–364. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10539-011-9256-4
  • Desjardins, E. (2011). Reflexions on Path Dependence and Irreversibility : Lessons From Evolutionary Biology. Philosophy of Science, 78(5):724–738. https://doi.org/10.1086/662560
  • Barker, G., Desjardins, E., & Pearce, T. (Eds.). (2014). Entangled Life [electronic resource] : Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences. Netherlands: Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-7067-6
  • Desjardins, E. (2015). Historicity and ecological restoration. Biology & Philosophy, 30(1), 77–98. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10539-014-9467-6
  • Desjardins, E., Barker, G., Lindo, Z., Dieleman, C., & Dussault, A. (2015). Promoting Resilience. The Quarterly Review of Biology, 90(2), 147–165. https://doi.org/10.1086/681439
  • Desjardins, E., Van De Wiel, M., & Rousseau, Y. (2018). Predicting, explaining and exploring with computer simulations in fluvial geomorphology. Earth-Science Reviews. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2018.06.015
  • Desjardins, E., Donhauser, J., & Barker, G. (2019). Ecological Historicity, Novelty and Functionality in the Anthropocene. Environmental Values, 28(3), 275–303. https://doi.org/10.3197/096327119X15519764179791
  • Malaterre, C., Dussault, A., Rousseau-Mermans, S., Barker, G., Beisner, B., Bouchard, F., Desjardins, E., Handa, I., Kembel, S., Lajoie, G., Maris, V., Munson, A., Odenbaugh, J., Poisot, T., Shapiro, B., & Suttle, C. (2019). Functional Diversity: An Epistemic Roadmap. BioScience, 69(10), 800–811. https://doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biz089
  • Singh, B., Summers, K., Barker, G., Desjardins, E., Weijer, C., and Madrenas, J. (2019). Emergence of human immunoprofiling in health and disease. Current Trends in Immunology 20, 11-19.
  • Desjardins, Eric. (2019). On the Meaning of “Coevolution” in Social-Ecological Studies: An Eco-Darwinian Perspective. Philosophical Topics, 47(1), 45-64.
  • Eric Desjardins, Joachim Kurtz, Nina Kranke, Ana Lindeza, S Helene Richter. (2021). Beyond Standardization: Improving External Validity and Reproducibility in Experimental Evolution, BioScience. https://doi-org.proxy1.lib.uwo.ca/10.1093/biosci/biab008

BOOK CHAPTERS

  • Desjardins, E., Barker, G., and Madrenas, J. (2014) Thinking Outside the Mouse: Organism-Environment Interaction and Human Immunology. In G., Barker, E., Desjardins and T., Pearce (Eds.) Entangled Life : Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences. Netherlands: Springer. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-94-007-7067-6_9
  • Desjardins, E., (2016). Contingent Evolution: Not by Chance Alone. In R., Grant (Ed.) Chance in Evolution. Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press. DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226401911.003.0010
  • Desjardins, E., Shaw, J., Barker, G., and Bzovy, J. (2019). Pluralism and the Geofunctional Perspective. In D., Tyler, F., Jankunis, and B., Williston (Eds.) From North of the 49: New Perspectives in Canadian Environmental Philosophy. McGill University Press.
  • Desjardins, E., Donhauser, J., and Barker G. (In press) La perspective geofontionelle dans la recherche et gouvernance des écosystèmes nouveaux. In D., Antoine and S., Rousseau-Mermans (Eds.) Penser la protection de l’environnement à partir de l’écologie : Débats historiques et contemporains. Éditions Matériologiques.

BOOK REVIEWS

  • Desjardins, E. (2015). La biodiversité en question: Enjeux philosophiques, éthiques et scientifiques, Elena Casetta & Julien Delord (Eds). Paris: Editions Matériologique. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, 37(3), 331-334. 10.1007/s40656-015-0073-y
  • Desjardins, E. (2019). On the Meaning of Biological Contingencies for Human Lives. Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology, 11(20200624). https://doi.org/10.3998/ptpbio.16039257.0011.004

IN THE MEDIA

  • Dejardins, E. (2020). Résilience: Un mot, plusieurs significations. à bâbord ! : Revue sociale et politique, No. 86.

Historical Contingency & Biological Entanglement

Three related research projects explore the normative dimensions of historical contingency and biological entanglement in various life sciences. The main goals are 1) to clarify the meaning of and relation between these two notions, 2) to explore and develop conceptual frameworks that can explain their relevance in various disciplines (especially experimental evolution and ecology), and 3) to show how these frameworks can be used in promoting more effective and ethical decision making in an increasingly human-impacted world.

PHIL 1130, Big Ideas
PHIL 1200, Critical Thinking and Reasoning
PHIL 2020, Basic Logic
PHIL 2300, Introduction to Philosophy of Science
PHIL 2033, Introduction to Environmental Philosophy
PHIL 2035, Nature, Ecology, and The Future
PHIL 2350, Darwinian Revolution
PHIL 2355, Sustainability: Philosophical Perspectives (online)
PHIL 3340, Conceptual Issues in Evolutionary Biology
PHIL 4311, Problems in Philosophy of Science: Philosophy of Ecology
PHIL 4993/9889, Environmental Philosophy
PHIL 9210, The Problem of Historicity in Biology and Economics
PHIL 9255 Chance, Determinism, & Explanation Biology
PHIL 9220B, Philosophy of Ecology & Conservation
PHIL 9xxxB, Prospectus Course