This September, several new members joined us at the Institute. Please join us in extending a warm welcome to the following people–we’re thrilled to have you all with us!

New Associate Faculty Members (profiles coming soon!): Pauline Barmby (Department of Physics & Astronomy), Carolyn McLeod (Department of Philosophy) & Jacob Shelley (Faculty of Law and the School of Health Studies)

New Postdoctoral Fellows: Ed Baggs, Bartek Chomanski & Rebecca Livernois

New Graduate Student Members: Tyeson Barton, Zelda Blair, Jordan Craib, Jess du Toit, Harmony Ezeuko, Tyler Journeaux Graham, Paul Istasy, Yichen Luo, Jaipreet Mattu, Varun Ravikumar & Michelle Thomas. And two new non-resident grad students – Zili Dong and Sidath Paramee Rankaduwa. (More profiles coming soon!)

Our visiting fellows program continues to thrive. Diane O’Leary, who joined us last year, will remain at the Institute for the fall term. Starting this month, we were also joined by Jennifer Flynn and Arthur Sullivan, both from Memorial University of Newfoundland, from the Faculty of Medicine and Department of Philosophy, respectively. Both Jennifer and Arthur will remain with us for the entire academic year. And finally, during the last week of September, Lucina Uddin joined us as a visiting fellow. She was a guest speaker at one of our institute hosted coffee breaks, giving us a short presentation about her research on brain connectivity and cognition. She was the first of several short-term visitors we’ll be hosting this year.

All other news from our members is listed below alphabetically.

Zelda Blair’s paper “The pataphysical perspective in biological theory development” was accepted for presentation in the First Congress of Philosophy for Emancipation, Diversity, and the Life of the Planet and the Twenty-Second International Conference on An Alternative Political Science, to be held in Havana, Cuba from November 19 to November 23, 2019. 

This September, a write-up on the outputs of the 2019 Summer Institute On AI And Society was released and featured on The Program on Understanding Law, Science, and Evidence (PULSE) at UCLA School of Law blog. Jon Bowen’s brief informal essay on agency in behaviour was featured as part of a multidisciplinary series of provocations on the website. The full report on the Summer Institute is available here.

Samantha Brennan had two recent publications: “Analytic Approaches to Feminist Ethics,” published in the Oxford Handbook of Feminist Philosophy, and a review of Perfect Me: Beauty as an Ethical Ideal, by Heather Widdows, published in Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews. Samantha was also a panelist at a few events: The Political Philosophy of Harm Reduction, “The moral limits of harm reduction policies,” at the Canadian Philosophical Association meeting at UBC; the Federation of Humanities and Social Sciences congress, “What are the incentives and rewards for community-focused research?”; and “Governance, Diversity and Inclusion Conference”, at the University of Guelph. 

Rotman alumna Eunice Chan began up a postdoctoral fellowship with Janet Martin, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, and is currently teaching C++ for the Department of Applied Mathematics at Western University.

Robert Corless was awarded the Halmos-Ford prize for his paper “Gamma and Factorial in the Monthly”. He was also recently awarded a $5000 New International Research Network grant, to fund a visit to Universidad Carlos III de Madrid in February 2020. He will visit the Isaac Newton Institute in Cambridge, England from November 3 to December 22. Robert was also invited to participate in the Complex analysis: techniques, applications and computations programme and was asked to give a workshop on Maple for the participants. Robert will cross the stage on October 23rd to pick up his emeritus certificate.

Cory Goldstein & Charles Weijer’s article “A stepwise approach to ethically assess pragmatic cluster randomized trials: implications for informed consent for suicide prevention implementation research” was published on the American Journal of Bioethics.

Harshita Jaiprakash, chair of the SOGS Freedom of Expression Ad Hoc Committee, organized a Freedom of Expression Speakers Series on Wednesday, September 25th. The event was open to Western students, faculty, and staff, and was intended to serve the purpose of facilitating a discussion to address Western’s Freedom of Expression Policy, related political trends and academic concepts surrounding freedom of expression, and the responsibilities and standards that students, academics and citizens should hold themselves to. Fellow Rotman members, Tyler Journeaux Graham and Heather Stewart, participated as panelists along with PSAC 610 President, Ari Vangeest, and Associate Chief Librarian, Robert Glushko. Watch the video here.

Chris Smeenk gave two talks at McGill: “General Relativity Stands Alone?” at the Montreal Space Institute colloquium, and “How Scientific Theories get their Content: (Replacing) A Just-So Story” at the 5th Annual History and Philosophy of Science Lecture.

Arthur Sullivan has a paper titled “The Varieties of Verbal Irony” in the production stage. It will be coming out soon in the journal LINGUA.

Jacqueline Sullivan gave a talk titled “Can Rodent iPads Revolutionize the Neuroscientific Study of Cognition?” at the Deep South Philosophy of Neuroscience Workshop that was part of the Alabama Philosophical Society Annual Conference, September 27-28, 2019, Pensacola Beach, FL. 

In the first week of September, Francesca Vidotto co-organized the workshop “Twistors meet Loops” at the Centre International des Rencontres Mathématiques in Marseille, France. The workshop brought together the communities of twistor theory and loop quantum gravity, with the presence of Sir Roger Penrose who made seminal works in both fields. Francesca also gave an invited presentation at the workshop “Time Machine Factory” in Turin, Italy, with the title “Black Holes are Time Machines”. She then attended a meeting of the LISA telescope in Padua. While there, she teamed up with Giovanna Mioni of the University of Padua in a public event discussing time in physics and in psychology.


Pictured above: Lucina Uddin giving a presentation during her visit to the institute; Jacqueline Sullivan giving her talk at the Deep South Philosophy of Neuroscience workshop; Robert Corless receiving his certificate of the Halmos-Ford prize; Tyler Journeaux Graham and Heather Stewart at the Freedom of Expression Speakers Series.