Boston Colloquium for Philosophy of Science

2013–2014
54th Annual Program

Download the 54th Annual Program

BCPS 2013-14 poster

The Alfred I. Tauber Forum

Evolutionary Explanations of Morality

Co-sponsored by the Boston University Center for the Humanities
Friday, September 27, 2013
1–6 p.m.
Barristers Hall, BU School of Law
765 Commonwealth Avenue

Event Flyer - 09.27.13

Ethics as a Human Project

Philip Kitcher Philosophy, Columbia University

Morality Did Not Evolve

Edouard Machery History and Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh

The Limits of Evolutionary Explanations of Morality

Russell Powell Philosophy, Boston University

Why Evolution Doesn’t Debunk Ethical Realism

William FitzPatrick Philosophy, University of Rochester

Strategic Morality

Robert Kurzban Psychology, University of Pennsylvania

The Robert S. Cohen Forum: Contemporary Issues in Science Studies

Time in Cosmology

Friday, October 18, 2013
1–5 p.m.
The Castle
225 Bay State Road

Event Flyer - 10.18.13

Time and Law in Cosmology

Lee Smolin Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics

| mp3 | Lecture Slides

Realism without Reification: How to Believe in Becoming

Jenann Ismael Philosophy, University of Arizona

| mp3 | Lecture Slides

A Universe in which Everything Changes Sooner or Later

Roberto Mangabeira Unger Law School, Harvard University

| mp3

Cosmological Laws without Real Time

Chris Smeenk Philosophy, University of Western Ontario

| mp3 | Lecture Slides

Joint Meeting with History of Science Society

Science in the Streets: Public Engagement Then and Now

Thursday, November 21, 2013
3–6 p.m.
Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Room 253C
415 Summer Street
Boston, Massachusetts
*Please note the change in location.

SciSts Flyer - 11.21.13

This session will consist of two panel discussions exploring innovative ways of connecting citizens with science, and how the history of science can inform and enrich these efforts.

Panel I: Science and Spectacle

  • Science Festivals and the Changing Culture of Science Engagement

    John Durant Director of the MIT Museum and Executive Director of the Cambridge Science Festival

  • History of Science Through Comedy

    Brian Malow Science Comedian

    David Kaiser MIT

  • Carving Story out of Science: On Stage and On Air

    Ari Daniel Story Collider and Freelance Writer

  • Panel discussion on current initiatives as well as historical cases such as the “shocking” public spectacles of itinerant electrical showmen and Benjamin Franklin, the history of automata and court entertainment, and showmanship and dinosaur bones in the history of American paleontology. Panelists include historians of science Gerardo Aldana, Oliver Hochadel, and Heidi Voskuhl.

Panel II: Crowdsourcing Science: Science by the People?

  • Crowdsourcing at the Smithsonian: From 1849 Weather Observers to Today’s Encyclopedia of Life

    Pamela Henson Director of the Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives

  • Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Data: From Whewell’s “Subordinate Labourers” to Maury’s Seafarers

    Caren Cooper Cornell Lab of Ornithology

  • The Zooniverse at Your Fingertips

    Lucy Fortson School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Minnesota, Citizen Science Alliance

  • Panel discussion on current initiatives such as Foldit as well as historical cases such as networks of human earthquake observers and crowdsourcing in the history of astronomy. Panelists include historians of science Deborah Coen, Leandra Swanner, and Lukas Rieppel.

QUESTIONS TO BE EXPLORED INCLUDE: What are some of the new creative initiatives to engage the public in science? Do these initiatives have a historical precedent? How has the relationship between “science” and “the public” changed over time? Why do citizens become involved in crowdsourcing? Is crowdsourcing a democratization of science or exploitative? What are the goals of engaging the public in science? How can historians of science contribute to efforts in public engagement?

Revisiting the Foundations of Statistics in the Era of Big Data: Scaling Up to Meet the Challenge

Cosponsored by the Department of Mathematics & Statistics at Boston University.
Friday, February 21, 2014
10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Photonics Center, 9th Floor Colloquium Room (Rm 906)
8 St. Mary’s Street

Foundations of Stats Flyer - 02.21.14

10 a.m.–noon

  • Computational Challenges in Genomic Medicine

    Jill Mesirov Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Broad Institute

  • Selection, Significance, and Signification: Issues in High Energy Physics

    Kent Staley Philosophy, Saint Louis University

    Lecture Slides

1:30–5:30 p.m.

  • Multi-Resolution Inference: An Engineering (Engineered?) Foundation of Statistical Inference

    Xiao-Li Meng Statistics, Harvard University

    | mp3 | Lecture Slides

  • Is the Philosophy of Probabilism an Obstacle to Statistical Fraud Busting?

    Deborah Mayo Philosophy, Virginia Tech

    | mp3 | Lecture Slides

  • Targeted Learning from Big Data

    Mark van der Laan Biostatistics and Statistics, UC Berkeley

    | mp3 | Lecture Slides

  • Panel Discussion

    Participants included: Kent Staley, Deborah Mayo, Xiao-Li Meng, and Mark van der Laan

    | mp3

Epistemic Injustice in Science

Friday, April 4, 2014
1–5 p.m.
Center for Student Services, Room 545
100 Bay State Road

Epistemic Injustic Flyer

Varieties of Testimonial Injustice

Miranda Fricker Philosophy, University of Sheffield

Epistemic Injustice and Responsible Trust in Science

Heidi Grasswick Philosophy, Middlebury College

Hermeneutical Injustice and Agnotology in Science

Miriam Solomon Philosophy, Temple University

Race, Gender and Neutral Science

Evelynn Hammonds History of Science and African-American Studies, Harvard University