- President’s Corner 1-2
- Attention Graduate Students 3
- Program Information 3
- Local Arrangements 4-5
- ISHPSSB Pre-Conference 5-6
- Marjorie Grene Prize 7
- Special Offers for ISHPSSB Members 7
- Positions in the Field 7-8
- Fellowships Available 8-9
- Conferences 9-10
- Publications of Interest 10
- Websites of Interest 10
- Call for Journal Submissions 11
- Call for Reviewers 11
- Prize Competition 11
- Treasurers’ Report 12-13
- Proposed Sessions for ISHPSSB 2001 13-15
- Deadlines 15
- Council Addresses 16
Donations to Support Travel to the Meeting
Students and independent scholars should also contact Keith Benson by March 15, 2001, regarding exact procedures for applying for travel assistance. A committee representing our diverse membership will award funds. Further details will be announced on the listserv and the website.
President’s Corner (continued)
Marjorie Grene Prize
Please take note of the deadline of February 1st for submissions for the Marjorie Grene Prize. This prize is intended to advance the careers of younger scholars, and will be awarded to the best manuscript based on a paper presented at one of the previous two ISHPSSB meetings by someone who is, or was at the time of the paper’s presentation, a graduate student. The award will consist of a certificate and up to $200 towards expenses incurred in attending the following meeting of the Society. See details inside this Newsletter.
Membership and Membership Records
In connection with this request for donations, I should remind you that we live on a biennial cycle. Accordingly, our membership, which is for two years, is extraordinarily inexpensive — $35 for regular membership, $10 for students, and gratis for those who have emeritus status. We believe that the information in our database is correct, but request each of you to check your address on the back of this Newsletter. Above your name, a date contains information on your membership status — in particular the date of record when your membership will (or did) expire. If your membership has expired and if, as we hope, you wish to remain a member of the society, please use the membership form on the web or contact Keith Benson. Turn to him if you have any questions about your membership status.
Call for Proposals to Host ISHPSSB 2003
Nominations for Officers
As is noted on the web site, we offer reduced subscriptions to Biology and Philosophy, History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences, The Journal of the History of Biology, and Metascience. We expect to add, shortly, Studies in the History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, and are exploring the possibility of adding Perspectives in Biology and Medicine. The specific arrangements vary a bit from journal to journal. See additional details in this Newsletter. In case of questions, contact Keith Benson. In general the reductions are considerable; in most cases the savings on a single subscription will more than pay for your society membership. Improved management of our membership records allow us to be much more efficient than we used to be in handling all such matters.
Although this column contains much ‘housekeeping’ information, its main purpose is to convey a warm invitation to the Quinnipiac meeting. It is our hope that the participants will be evenly balanced among biologists, historians, philosophers, and social scientists. We aim to provide an informal collegial atmosphere that facilitates communication across disciplinary boundaries, with much work centered on problems and domains that cannot be confined within the boundaries of any one of our disciplines. We expect to match our past success in providing a good environment for working across disciplinary boundaries for all of you who join us at Quinnipiac this coming July.
Richard Burian, Society President
Attention Graduate Students
We are getting ready for the next ISHPSSB meeting to be held at Quinnipiac, New Hampshire on July 18-22, 2001. The deadline for submitting paper proposals is approaching, and we look forward to receiving yours, whether you are an ISHPSSB member or not.
You are especially encouraged to submit your paper as part of a panel and, obviously, to participate by organizing one of your own. Use ISHPSB-L (our mailing list) to assemble a panel by posting your panel idea and asking for other participants. You are welcome to invite anyone to be on the panels you propose, including, and perhaps especially, more established scholars.
We are working out the details of providing travel grants for students who present papers. Society members have been very generous in the past, and we hope to be able to provide some funds for every student who is giving a paper.
If you can not assemble an entire panel including chair and commentator, you are still better off putting the papers together. Take a look at the paper and session abstracts from the last ISHPSSB conference to get ideas on how to write paper and panel proposals. They are posted on the web at:
Proposals can be submitted online at:
Leon Martinez, Student Representative
Yes, the time is ripe for finalizing your organization for sessions for the 2001 meetings. The mental deadline for proposals should be February 15, 2001 (to allow a few weeks for last minute adjustments). I have heard informally about many exciting sessions and I am looking forward to some really fascinating discussion.
Many members have already posted prospective topics for the 2001 meetings on our bulletin board at http://www.phil.vt.edu/ishpssb/2001/ (Earlier problems on posting and viewing abstracts have now been fixed.) I encourage everyone to use the bulletin board to float their tentative ideas with other members. I’ve already heard from several non-members who have been inspired by the postings and are considering attending the meetings and/or joining the society.
I want to alert everyone again to the potential for organizing sessions specifically designated for discussing papers read in advance. Papers will need to be posted on the web 8 weeks in advance of the meetings. This revives an earlier tradition of the society and we hope it can foster more productive discussion and interaction.
Given the relatively late deadline for proposals (March 15), members who may need letters of acceptance to apply for travel funds should contact Douglas Allchin as soon as needed.
Proposed 2001 Sessions
Abstracts and details on these sessions, including information on contacting the session organizers, is available elsewhere in this Newsletter and on the web.
Remember that fully organized thematic sessions are generally more successful than collections of individual papers. Feel free to broadcast your ideas on the program bulletin board: http://mind.phil.vt.edu/submissions/board.html – and to review what others have proposed. Also consider scanning past meeting programs: http://www.phil.vt.edu/ishpssb/#meetings to find persons who have presented papers on similar topics and who you may wish to contact and recruit directly.
Also remember that a primary aim of our meetings is to foster discussion. So do not feel constrained by the standard format of academic meetings where papers are presented (or read!) in succession. Consider how you might organize a session that initiates and facilitates exchange of ideas among participants. One option available this year is to post papers on the web for participants to read in advance of the meetings and to designate your session as "for discussion only." Proposal forms will be available on the web soon. You may also send proposals by fax or post.
Douglas Allchin, 2001 Program Chair
Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Connecticut, USA
Quinnipiac University enthusiastically invites the members of the ISHPSSB to experience the scenic beauty of its campus for the society’s 2001 meeting. Located just outside of New Haven, Connecticut, at the foot of the spectacular Sleeping Giant State Park, Quinnipiac offers a unique combination of the intimacy and bucolic splendor of a small liberal arts college with the facilities of a medium sized university. The campus is relatively small and open, dominated by a main quadrangle on which are located almost all of the University academic buildings as well its newly reconstructed Arnold Bernhard Library. The dorms, where many of those attending the conference will be staying, are located immediately adjacent to the quad and are no more than a five minute walk from the center of campus and from the dining facilities. The area abounds with recreational activities, from the linear park located just a five minute walk from campus to hikes in the Sleeping Giant, which is literally across the street. There are many places on campus for informal gatherings and social events. The library provides excellent internet access with dozens of public computer stations, and all of the campus has excellent handicap access. Kathy Cooke and David Valone, your local hosts, promise every effort to make the meeting comfortable and enjoyable for all the participants.
For those of you planning on staying in the Quinnipiac dorms, please be advised that the dorms do not have air conditioning. While summers in Connecticut are typically fairly temperate, we cannot guarantee that we won’t have a heat wave the week of the meeting. There is good ventilation provided by a large central fan in each dorm, but those of you sensitive to heat might want to consider staying in one of the nearby hotels if you want to be assured of a cool night sleep.
The following is also available on the Society website.
ISHPSSB hosts its 2001 meetings at Quinnipiac University in south central Connecticut, U.S.A., approximately five miles from New Haven (home of Yale University), midway between Boston and New York. The campus is in a secluded setting and is renowned throughout the northeast for its beauty – a perfect restful site for discussion and recreation. The university sits across the street from Sleeping Giant State Park and its many miles of hiking trails. Another scenic park, built along the old Farmington Canal, is about one half mile from the campus, and provides opportunities for biking, walking, roller blading, and jogging.
Our hosts are Kathy J. Cooke (203-582-3475) and David A. Valone (203-582-5269), both in the Department of History at the college.
Quinnipiac University, in Hamden, Connecticut, is located thirty-five miles from Hartford, and about one hundred and twenty miles from either Boston or New York. It is accessible via car, train, bus, and plane.
Note: We are still working on coordinating limousine service from Hartford and New York airports. New Haven’s Tweed Airport is about 10 miles away, and is the closest airport, but is served by a limited number of major carriers (US Air Express and United). Shuttle service (~$20) is available from Connecticut Limousine Service (800-472-5466). Hartford/Springfield’s Bradley International Airport is about forty-five miles away, and is served by nearly all the major US airlines. Shuttle service to New Haven is $26 one-way, $48 round-trip, available from Connecticut Limousine Service (800-472-5466). Group rates available for 3 or more. International arrivals will likely arrive through New York or Boston. You can arrange for a shuttle flight to one of the closer airports noted above (several air shuttles from the New York airports serve New Haven Tweed) or you can use ground transportation as indicated below.
New York (Laguardia and Kennedy Airports) Note: Laguardia is preferable to Kennedy in terms of ground transport. Limousine service to downtown New Haven (about 2 hours) is $40 one-way, $76 round-trip, available from Connecticut Limousine Service (800-472-5466). Group rates available for 3 or more. An alternative is to take the shuttle bus ($10, every 20-30 minutes) to Grand Central Station and take the MTA Metro North train to New Haven (~100 minutes, leaves roughly hourly, $23-30 round trip).
Boston (Logan Airport) If you do not rent a car, you may take the "T" to the train station and get an Amtrak train to New Haven, as described below.
New Haven is a major stop on the Northeast corridor Amtrak line that includes Washington DC, Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. New Haven is ~100 minutes from New York Penn Station ($29 one-way) and 2-1/2 to 3 hours from Boston ($41 one-way). Reservations on Amtrak are not always needed, but do guarantee a seat. MTA Metro North trains to New Haven depart from Grand Central Station in New York roughly every hour (~100 minutes, $23-30 round trip) – a much better bargain if you are leaving from New York City.
Local Bus and Taxi Service
A CT Transit bus runs from the train station to within one-half mile of the campus . Some buses run directly to the campus, but this service is quite limited. A better alternative is probably a taxi from the New Haven airport or train station. Call Metro Taxi: (203) 777-7777.
For those who will drive to the meeting, there is ample free parking on campus. Directions will be posted later.
Accommodation on the Quinnipiac University campus will be in a complex of three adjacent dorms located near the main quad, student center, and cafeteria. Rooms are arranged in suites of four bedrooms with a common living room (no furniture) and a bathroom with two shower stalls, two toilets, and three sinks. The bedrooms are small but do contain two single beds (in most cases, bunk beds) and two desks with chairs. Each bedroom has its own key. The dorms are not air-conditioned. Special rooms are available for handicapped persons.
The dorm rooms cost $23 per person per night, double occupancy. Single rooms will cost $30 per night. A $25 key deposit is required. Meals at the dining hall are arranged separately (more information to be posted later).
There are a few hotels within walking distance from campus, and some within modest driving distance. More information forthcoming.
Sleeping Giant State Park, across the street from the campus, has many miles of hiking trails. About one-half-mile from campus is another scenic park, stretching along the old Farmington Canal several miles to the north and south, also excellent for biking, walking, roller blading, and jogging. Bicycle and roller blade rentals are available nearby.
Local attractions include: Dinosaur State Park, one of the largest dinosaur track sites in North America. Also includes an arboretum, containing more than 250 species and cultivars of conifers, as well as katsuras, ginkgoes, magnolias. Just south of Hartford (~30 miles from the campus). The Mark Twain House and Harriet Beecher Stowe House are in Hartford, about a 40 minute drive from campus. Yale University, including the Peabody Museum.
New Haven is accessible by local bus service. Information on the New Haven area is available from the New Haven Convention & Visitors Bureau.
We will update the information on local attractions in the near future.
While the whole campus is handicapped-accessible, the university has one or two dorm rooms that are specially equipped for the handicapped. These are located in nearby dorms. Contact Kathy Cooke.
Special diets (details forthcoming).
Helping Each Other to Foster Critical Thinking about Environment, Science, and Society
Changing concepts of life and changing possibilities for the living are developed and negotiated in many sites and situations-from disputes over access to pasture and water to global climate modeling conferences, intellectual property agreements to grassroots movements, boardrooms to classrooms. With a focus on environmental studies, this small workshop (10-15 participants) will explore ways that placing developments in science in their social context can enliven and enrich environmental education and activism. Participants will lead each other in activities that can be adapted to college classrooms and other contexts, allowing them to share insights, experience, experiments, struggles, and plans. A provisional program based on what participants volunteer in advance will be adjusted as the workshop unfolds during the two days together.
The workshop’s guiding principle about "process" is that academic meetings are more fruitful when they allow participants to connect theoretical, pedagogical, practical, political, and personal aspects of the issue at hand-in this case, fostering critical thinking about environment, science, and society. In this spirit, the workshop aims to catalyze collaborations and networks among the participants, in recognition of the fact that we not only need tools, but need continuing support and inspiration as we weave new approaches into our work.
Location & dates
Quinnipiac University, in Hamden, Connecticut, morning of July 16 - evening of July 17, 2001 (Let me know if you prefer an alternative date & place, e.g., Cambridge, MA, July 23-24).
Participants (affiliation & interests) – sessions they might share **please send updated info** e.g. Peter Taylor (CCT, UMass Boston; ‘heterogeneous construction’ of environment, science, and society; critical reflexive practice within the natural and social sciences; teaching critical thinking about biology and society) – stimulating students and researchers to make (helpful) diagrams of complex intersecting processes.
Updates of this prospectus will list confirmed participants, their interests, and their session proposals. See http://omega.cc.umb.edu/~ptaylor/helping01.html
Towards a Program
Invitees should contact Peter Taylor if they have ideas for experiential sessions. That is, sessions in which, instead of telling us what you have thought or found out, you will lead other participants to experience the issues and directions you are exploring and the tools you use to help others think critically about them. If you don’t propose a session, you might invent one during the workshop. In any case, come prepared to expose your work in small groups as the workshop develops. It is expected that in response to what arises we will deviate from any pre-circulated program, and participants are expected to be open to experimenting in different forms of interaction. In addition, people are encouraged to submit a paper, manuscript, thought-piece, or reading for pre-circulation.
The workshop will begin with brief introductions, then continue with longer spoken autobiographies, centered around how each of us had come to be working on environment, science, and society in some sense and/or chosen to participate in this workshop. Material emerging in such autobiographical statements and sessions provides more and different context than formal presentations-We know more than we are usually able to say, and opening this to exploration in subsequent conversations and sessions is an important basis for (inter)connecting our work. Hearing what we happen to mention and omit in telling our own story also serves as a source of insight into our present place and direction.
For examples of what else has been done in previous workshops, view http://omega.cc.umb.edu/~ptaylor/pp2.html
There is a fee for the workshop to cover costs for publicity, xeroxing and refreshments and, most importantly, to equalize the real cost of attendance. CCT is trying to maintain a fund to subsidize travel for long-distance participants and to offer a lower, sliding-scale registration fee for those without institutional support. People in those categories please contact us well beforehand about your costs and needs for subsidy.
The regular registration fee is $100 (send checks to CCT by June 30th, payable to the Graduate College of Education). If it looks like income will exceed expenses, dinners will also be covered; otherwise, we will share those expenses.
At Quinnipiac University, dorm accommodation, breakfast and lunch will be available at inexpensive rates-details will be supplied later. (If the workshop is held in Cambridge, participants from the Boston area will be asked whether they can spare a bed and so reduce the costs for out-of-town guests.)
Initial seed money to begin these workshops in 1999-2000 was provided by STEMTEC (http://k12s.phast.umass.edu/~stemtec/).
This workshop will precede the meetings of the International Society for History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Biology near New Haven in Connecticut (7/18-22), and open pre-ISHPSSB workshop on Teaching Biology in its Social Context, on 7/18. (If in Cambridge, it will immediately follow ISHPSSB.)
This workshop will also fall within a series of Friday-Saturday workshops on "New Directions in Science Education" organized by CCT and offered on a for-credit or non-credit basis by Continuing Education at UMass Boston
(www.conted.umb.edu) (July 13-14, 20-21, 27-28). The first workshop (7/13, 14) on "Science in its social context" will be led by Peter Taylor.
Contact the CCT office (617 287 6520) in the spring for more details.
To do: Indicate if you want this prospectus & updates sent in the mail; Indicate interest in participating (definite/tentative); Indicate preference for place & date (Quinnipaic vs. Cambridge); Provide/update info about your affiliation and interests; Suggest a session, however tentative; Suggest other invitees; Subsidy needs for travel and for sliding-scale registration fee.
Marjorie Grene Prize
ISHPSSB seeks nominations for the Marjorie Grene Prize. This prize is intended to advance the careers of younger scholars, and will be awarded to the best manuscript based on a paper presented at one of the previous two ISHPSSB meetings by someone who was, at the time of presentation, a graduate student.
It is very appropriate for ISHPSSB to name this prize in Marjorie Grene’s honor. Her work in history and philosophy of biology provides models for many ISHPSSB members and exemplifies the spirit of pursuing interactions among the fields within ISHPSSB. She played a central role in bringing together scholars for the meetings in the pre-history of ISHPSSB. She has been a mentor to many members of the Society.
The award will consist of a certificate and up to $200 toward expenses incurred in attending the 2001 meeting of the Society. If the manuscript is not already under review by a journal, the prize committee will promote the winning entry to one of the leading journals.
The postmark deadline for submissions for the first competition is February 1, 2001. The winning entry will be announced by April 15, 2001. Send three copies of manuscripts to Chris Young, ISHPSSB Secretary 1316 N Astor St, Milwaukee, WI 53202. ISHPSSB encourages, but does not require, all entrants to be members of the Society.
Special Offers for ISHPSSB Members
We offer ISHPSSB members a discount on Metascience and have in fact included it on our flyer for the journal and on the journal’s website: http://www.blackwellpublishers.co.uk/journals/mesc/
The full personal rate is US$54 Americas; £35 Europe and the rest of the world. The ISHPSSB member rate is US$45 Americas; £29 Europe and the rest of the world. The journal’s Institutional rate is US$164 Americas; £106 Europe and the rest of the world, except A$138 Australia/NZ.
Journal of the History of Biology
Subscribe to the Journal of the History of Biology by contacting Society Treasurer and membership/subscription guru Keith Benson. Members receive a substantially discounted rate! (US$50, or US$90 for both JHB and B&P, see below.) Check out the journal online at http://www.wkap.nl/journalhome.htm/0022-5010
Biology and Philosophy
Subscribe to Biology and Philosophy by contacting Society Treasurer and membership/subscription guru Keith Benson. Members receive a substantially discounted rate! (US$50, or US$90 for both JHB and B&P, see above.) Check out the journal online at http://www.wkap.nl/journalhome.htm/0169-3867
Positions in the Field
Arizona State University Main Campus
Biology and Society
The Department of Biology invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the Assistant Professor level. The successful candidate will be an active contributor to our Biology and Society program. Required are (1) a Ph.D in an appropriate discipline at the time of appointment, (2) a strong record of professional accomplishments, interests, and abilities that are based in the biological sciences, are broadly interdisciplinary and integrate perspectives from both life sciences and history/philosophy/social sciences, and (3) teaching and research experience or potential. We particularly encourage candidates with professional interests and experience in ethical issues in biology and who will complement our existing programs. The position has a preferred start date of 16 August 2001 and requires the establishment of a productive research program at ASU, and participation in the department’s teaching and mentoring programs.
The Biology and Society program is based in the Department of Biology and engages faculty and undergraduates in interdisciplinary study of the interactions among human society, the living world, and life sciences, especially as these interactions occur in the biomedical, evolutionary, and ecological arenas. The program’s offerings and requirements are coordinated with relevant departments, centers, and programs at ASU. Please visit the program’s web site for more information (http://lsvl.la.asu.edu/biosoc/).
Please submit: a curriculum vitae that includes details of past teaching experiences and other interactions with undergraduates; selected reprints; a statement of teaching accomplishments, interests, and philosophy as they relate to the goals of our Biology and Society Program; a statement of research accomplishments and future plans; and three letters of recommendation to: Chair, Biology and Society Search Committee, Department of Biology, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-1501; fax (480-965-2519)). Applications from two individuals wishing to share this appointment will be considered. Application deadline is 8 January 2001, with applications reviewed weekly thereafter until the position is filled. Arizona State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.
University of California, Davis
Director of Science and Technology Studies Program
Tenured associate or full professor, beginning Fall 2001. We are seeking an accomplished scholar to lead program development and guide the transition from an existing program in History and Philosophy of Science. Duties include research, teaching, supervision of students, and curriculum development. Teaching is based on a standard faculty load of four quarter courses per year. Reduction in teaching for administrative service is negotiable. Possibility of departmental affiliation open. The appointee must have Ph.D. and have a record of strong scholarly and teaching accomplishments in some field of social, historical or philosophical studies of the natural or social sciences, medicine, or engineering. Minority and women candidates are especially encouraged to apply.
The University of California, Davis, and the Science and Technology Studies Program are interested in candidates who are committed to the highest standards of scholarship and professional activities, and to the development of a campus climate that supports equality and diversity. The University of California is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.
The Department of History at Stanford University seeks to fill a tenure-track position at the assistant professor level in the history of science and technology. The appointee will be expected to teach courses at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. The term of appointment is expected to begin on September 1, 2001.
Areas of interest include, but are not limited to, the history of modern physics (nineteenth and twentieth centuries), the history of technology (twentieth century), and environmental history. We welcome applications from recent Ph.D.s or persons who will receive their degree by September 2001. Women and minority scholars are particularly encouraged to apply. Stanford University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer.
Applicants should send a curriculum vitae, a statement of research interests, a dossier of confidential letters of recommendation, and relevant publications or writing samples by January 5, 2001 to the History of Science Search Committee, Department of History, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305-2024.
Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology, Fellows Programs 2001-2002
The Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology invites applications to its two fellowship programs for the academic year 2001-2002: the Senior Fellows program and the Postdoctoral Fellows program. There will be some twenty Fellows at the Institute each term.
The Dibner Institute is an international center for advanced research in the history of science and technology, established in 1992. It draws on the resources of the Burndy Library, a major collection of both primary and secondary material in the history of science and technology, and enjoys the participation in its programs of faculty members and students from the universities that make up the Dibner Institute’s consortium: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the host institution; Boston University; and Harvard University.
The Institute’s primary mission is to support advanced research in the history of science and technology, across a wide variety of areas and a broad spectrum of topics and methodologies. The Institute favors projects that address events dating back thirty years or more; and, while recognizing that overlap between the history of medicine and the history of biology makes strict distinctions impossible, the Institute generally does not support projects in the history of clinical medicine.
Senior Fellows Programs
Candidates for Senior Fellowships should have advanced degrees in disciplines relevant to their research and show evidence of substantial scholarly accomplishment and professional experience. Senior fellows may apply for a second fellowship appointment five years after their first successful application.
Scholars may apply to the Senior Fellows program for the Fall (Term 1), the Spring (Term 2) or both. Term 1 extends from August 1 through December 31, with full activities beginning on September 1; Term 2 extends from January 1 through May 31, with full activities beginning on February 1. At the time of application, Term 1 candidates may request an arrival date in August; Term 2 candidates may request an extension into June. The Institute prefers that senior fellows apply for a two-term, full-year residency if possible.
Postdoctoral Fellows Program
Fellowships are awarded to outstanding scholars of diverse countries of origin who have received the Ph.D. or equivalent within the previous five years. Postdoctoral Fellowships run for one year, from September 1 through August 31, and may be extended for a second and final year at the discretion of the Dibner Institute.
Terms and Conditions
All Dibner Fellows are expected to reside in the Cambridge/Boston area during the terms of their grants, to participate in the activities of the Dibner Institute community, and to present their current work once during their fellowship appointments.
Fellowships provide office space, support facilities and full privileges at the Burndy Library and at the libraries of consortium universities. Fellows will have access to the entire spectrum of activities that take place at the Dibner Institute, where they will be able to find the resources and appropriate settings to carry on their work.
Ph.D. Studentship in the History of Biology
A studentship is available in the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine at the University of Manchester (UK) for a three-year project leading to a Ph.D. The project will focus upon the history of cotton research (including entomology, genetics and plant pathology) in 20th century Britain. The student will join a small group of students who are working with Dr. Jonathan Harwood on the transformation of the biological sciences, ca. 1870-1940.
The studentship pays tuition fees and maintenance (initially £6650) and will be awarded for one year in the first instance (renewable for a further two). Starting date is negotiable. Candidates should have a good degree in science, history, or a related subject. Postgraduate training in history of science and a knowledge of biology would be an advantage. Applicants should send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and the names of two referees as soon as possible to Jonathan Harwood, CHSTM, Maths Tower, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK.
Mephistos Graduate Student Conference for the History, Philosophy, and Sociology of Science. Founded by history of science graduate students in 1981, the Mephistos graduate student conference fosters rich discussions in a relaxed atmosphere among graduate students in history, philosophy, and sociology of science and related disciplines. University of Notre Dame, March 30 through April 1, 2001. For more information and travel grant details: http://www.nd.edu/~meph2001. Abstracts due January 15, 2001: Mephistos 2001 Program Committee, History and Philosophy of Science, 346 O’Shaughnessy Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556-5634. FAX: (219) 631-4268
Dibner Institute Seminar in History of Biology: From Embryology to Evo-Devo
Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA, May 30-June 6, 2001
The Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology announces its Seminar in the History of Biology, to be held the evening of May 30 through breakfast on June 6, 2001, at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. This year’s seminar will explore the history of developmental biology, from its inception as "embryology" to the most recent approaches known as molecular developmental genetics and "evo-devo." We will examine changing ways of looking at the developing individual organism, both in itself and in the context of evolution and inheritance. Do organisms differentiate as they grow, or are they preformed? How does morphogenesis occur, by what causes, to what extent it is a purely material process, and how we know? Which organisms should we study, using what methods, and how can we capture and (re)present those results to others? What difference does evolution make?
Through WW II, developmental studies found a place in medical schools as embryology and also in "general biology" programs. A rapid shift from embryology to developmental biology, starting in the 1950s, reflected professional, institutional, epistemological, and methodological differences. During subsequent decades, study of development has experienced a changing and sometimes antagonistic relation to genetics and to evolution. Along the way came molecular developmental genetics. Now, with much fanfare, we have "evo-devo." This raises the questions, what do we gain from these new labels, what exactly is going on now, and how do contemporary approaches compare to previous approaches? By bringing together historians, philosophers, and biologists, we will be able to explore such questions in lively and multi-disciplinary ways. Since many of the original important biological studies took place at the Marine Biological Laboratory, this is a particularly appropriate venue. And participation by some of the leading biologists who have made the most difference over the past decades will provide important perspectives on the history and philosophy of developmental biology.
The application form and information pertaining the seminar can be downloaded from the Dibner Institute website: http://dibinstg.mit.edu (then search under Events and Publications; Current; 2001).
Publications of Interest
All of those who are interested in the development of German biology will be excited to learn about the recent publication of August Weismann; Selected Letters and Documents, 2 vols. edited by Frederick B. Churchill and Helmut Risler (Universitaetsbibliothek Freiburg i. Br., 1999; ISBN 3-928969-09-9). This edition is not available for commercial sale, since it was published by a university library. However, copies may be obtained by writing: Hansjuergen Maurer, Universitaetsbibliothek Freiburg i.BR., Postfach 1629, D-79016 Freiburg.
John Ray Trust
The John Ray Trust, together with the Society for the History of Natural History and the Institute of Biology’s History Committee, ran a conference on John Ray and his Successors: the clergyman as biologist in 1999. The papers for this conference are now available from the John Ray Trust, Town Hall Centre, BRAINTREE, CM7 3YG, UK (fax +44 1376 344345) for a price of 15 GBP (possibly more for overseas). There are 19 full papers and some other matters in a book of 252 pages. As well as Ray and some general papers, other clergy studied are H White, the Hincks dynasty, Henslow, Gordon, Symonds, Kingsley, Tristram, Dallinger, Woodruffe-Peacock, Raven. Authors include Brooke, Knight, and Bowler. Edited by Nigel Cooper.
Websites of Interest
Claus Emmeche has made a webpage for people with websites (showing research interests etceteras) within theoretical biology and history, philosophy, and social study of biology. Not all of these fields have yet been covered equally well, but feel free to visit this website, and to suggest additional names to be included. The address is http://www.nbi.dk/~emmeche/theobiophi.html
Call for Journal Submissions
Semiosis, Evolution, Energy, Development
Online journal: Semiosis, Evolution, Energy, Development ISSN 1492-3157, http://www.library.utoronto.ca/see/pages/SEED_Journal.html
The Journal is based on the University of Toronto Library computer, and thus is accessible to all internet connected university libraries as well as to individuals. The location of the journal ensures that its site will be permanently archived.
If you know of anyone else who might be interested in publishing in SEED, please pass this on or send their names to the Editor.
From the heading: The past 50 years have seen the introduction of information as a physical entity with a mathematical theory. In the last ten years, connections have been developed to energy, evolution and development, as well as to signs, representation, interpretation and the mind. Many of these developments are controversial, such as whether information is intrinsically related to meaning, whether there is a general semiotics that extends beyond human signs, and whether, indeed, there is anything well-defined outside of human theories. This journal deals with these and related issues.
Perspectives on Science: Historical, Philosophical, Social (MIT Press)
Perspectives on Science
is devoted to studies on the sciences that integrate historical, philosophical, and sociological perspectives. Its interdisciplinary approach is intended to foster a more comprehensive understanding of the sciences and the contexts in which they develop. Each article appearing in Perspectives on Science will provide the reader with at least two of the three perspectives on their subject. Each issue aims at articles that range over case studies and theoretical essays of a meta-historical and meta-philosophical character. The journal fosters historiographical works combining social and institutional analyses of science, as well as analyses of experiments, practices, concepts, and theories. All papers consist of original research drawing upon the most recent scholarship. Essay book reviews appear regularly.
All contributions are peer-reviewed, as well as evaluated by the editor and associate editors. The Board of Advisory Editors is deliberately drawn from a wide range of subdisciplines within history, philosophy, and sociology of science.
Guidelines for manuscript submissions (and other information) can be found at our website: http://www.phil.vt.edu/pos.html
Call for Reviewers
American Biology Teacher
American Biology Teacher
, the journal of the National Association of Biology Teachers, is seeking qualified reviewers in history, philosophy and social studies of biology. Reviewers will consider papers aimed primarily at secondary and college biology instructors and be responsible for evaluating content on "history and nature of science" or "science in personal and social perspectives." Prospective reviewers should be widely familiar with the diversity of current approaches in their field (or science studies, more generally) and be sensitive to appropriate simplifications for educational contexts.
The Society for the Social History of Medicine (SSHM) is pleased to announce that the winner of its 1999 Prize Essay Competition is Susan Broomhall (Centre des Etudes Superieures de la Renaissance, Tours, France) for her paper "‘Women’s Little Secrets’: Defining the Boundaries of Reproductive Knowledge in the Sixteenth Century." Cathy McClive’s (University of Warwick) essay, "The Hidden Truths of the Belly: The Uncertainties of Pregnancy in Early Modern Europe," was given an honorable mention.
ISHPSSB Biennial Report, 1997 (Oct)-1999
David Magnus, Treasurer
(submitted by Keith R. Benson)
Beginning Bank Balances
LaSalle (1998) 11,932.59
Sea Island (Oct 97) 10,376.43
Total 22,309.02 22,309.02
1997 (Oct. to end of year) 1,210.00
Total 24,346.00 46,655.02
Incorporation fees (97-99) 75.00
Newsletter (98-two newsletters) 2,417.16
Newsletter (99-one newsletter) 2,723.47
Office support 300.88
Travel Grants 10,400.00
Oaxaca Meeting 11,249.31
Kluwer subscriptions 480.00
Banking expenses (97) 100.01
Banking expenses (98) 590.27
Banking expenses (99) 942.27
Total 29,563.37 17,091.65**
Bank Balances as of 31 December 1999
Sea Island 7,823.06
*Income totals are composite of all deposits. Details of deposits were not available
**These totals represent a discrepancy of $576; i.e., ISHPSSB should have a bank balance with $576 additional funds. The difference may be the result of inadequate or unrecorded fund transfers related to the meeting in Oaxaca. It does not, however, include the non-receivables from the Oaxaca meeting, totaling $660.00.
2000-2001 Actual Budget (to June 2000)
Keith R. Benson, Treasurer
Beginning Bank Balances*
Sea Island 7,823.06
Total 16,515.65 16,515.65
LaSalle (to end of account) 30.00
Sea Island Jan 00 36.00
Sea Island Feb 00 76.00
Sea Island Mar 00 36.00
April 00 36.00
May 00 36.00
June 00 97.48
Total 347.48 16,168.17
Feb 00 430.00
Mar 00 380.00
April 00 240.00
Total 1,050.00 15,118.17
June 00 133.44
Total 133.44 14,984.73
April 00 173.71
Total 173.71 14,811.02
Jan 00 145.00
Feb 00 400.00
April 00 235.00
May 00 2,186.00
Total 2,966.00 17,777.02
Ending Bank Balance 17,777.02
*Accounts merged as of 1 April 2000
ISHPSSB BUDGET, 2000-2001
Keith R. Benson, Treasurer
Newsletter printing 2,000.00
Newsletter mailing 1,800.00
Office support (sec’y/treas) 1,000.00
Bank fees 1,200.00
Travel grants 11,000.00
Total Expense 29,500.00
Membership fees 10,000.00
and exhibits 15,000.00
Subscription rental 250.00
Membership donations 1,000.00
Total Income 29,500.00
Proposed Sessions for ISHPSSB 2001
There has been growing interest of late in the philosophical problems posed by developmental biology. The central question of developmental biology is this: How precisely do organisms proceed from a relatively "disordered" and "homogeneous" zygote to a highly ordered, highly specific adult form? This raises questions about the nature of information, causality and complexity. For example, is it either necessary or desirable to explain developmental trajectories as the product of hierarchical control by the genome? Such questions are especially interesting in light of recent findings such as the enormously widespread homology of developmental processes.
This session might be called "Biology Bloopers" – cases studies of error in the life sciences. Our aim is to analyze such cases to develop strategies for mitigating or managing error and to consider the implications for science policy (funding, publication, education).
The ‘Argument for Design’ has a long pedigree dating back to Antiquity. Most famously stated by Paley, it states that the human mind can detect design in the natural world and thus must infer a Designer (usually identified with the Judeo-Christian deity). Charles Darwin showed that it was possible to explain apparent design using his theory of natural selection, and the argument appeared nullified. Recently a group of commentators have resurrected this classic viewpoint and have risen under the banner of the ‘Intelligent Design Theory’ (IDT) movement, one which (within the United States at least) is associated with conservative politics. Writers such as the lawyer Phillip Johnson, the mathematicians William Dembski & David Berlinski, and the biochemist Michael Dembski have all argued that IDT allows one to rigorously define and detect Design - and what’s more, that divine Design is readily apparent in the world today, thus refuting New-Darwinism. Ultimately, one must ask the question whether IDT is ‘merely’ a (slightly) more respectable form of Creationism. This session seeks to place the IDT movement within its social, historical, philosophical and political context. Currently proposed papers included an examination of the Design argument within the writings of Adam Sedgwick & Robert Chambers, and an analysis of the ‘Wedge Strategy’ of the IDT movement.
Talk of mechanisms is ubiquitous in biology, but the topic has received surprisingly little discussion. A possible session on mechanisms in biology might include papers on the following topics: the concept of mechanism and how it applies to biology; assessment of two recent views of mechanism (Glennan 1996 in Erkenntnis; Machamer, Darden, Craver 2000 in Philosophy of Science); strategies for discovering mechanisms; the role of mechanisms and mechanism schemata in biological explanations; experimental methods for testing plausible mechanisms; historical accounts of the discovery of mechanisms; natural selection as a mechanism (or not?).
Endangered species have probably always been among us, but they have received renewed scientific, legislative, and social interest in the last 25 years (since the Endangered Species Act of 1973). I would be interested in putting together a panel that examines all aspects of endangered species including: creating a new science of species protection and restoration, legislating survival of the fittest, the environmental politics of charismatic critters, and case studies on species that have been threatened, endangered or extirpated. I do not have any particular chronological or geographical preference for paper ideas.
Property emergence has recently become, once again, a very much discussed issue in the philosophy of biology as well as in other domains of philosophical research, particularly, in the philosophy of mind. In part, this was due to the remarkable influence of the sciences of complexity, such as Artificial Life, Artificial Intelligence, cognitive science, theoretical biology, and so on. Among the issues regarded as relevant to a cogent explanation and/or definition of property emergence in biological, mental, and other complex systems, one finds the nature of causality in these systems, and, specially, the idea of downward causation. I would like to invite researchers working on the notions of property emergence and downward causation in biological and mental systems to send proposals of papers for a session on these topics in the forthcoming 2001 ISHPSSB meeting.
The aim of this session would be to put forward well-constructed historical, philosophical, sociological, and biological views on issues at the intersection of environmental science and public policy. Researchers involved in ISHPSSB oriented studies on public policy (at any level) concerning population growth, air and water quality, ecology, resource management, forestry, biotechnology, environmental ethics, history and literature, etc. are welcome. Examples of candidate issues for exploration include the following: environmental science modeling and its role in making public policy, population growth rates and global policy, biotechnology and modified foods, biodiversity in general, politics of clear cutting, non-anthropocentric ethics and policy implications, concepts of nature and wilderness and policy implications, etc.
Is unification truly dead? The popular consensus among historians and philosophers of biology seems to be that evolutionary biology is not a unified science, and that the evolutionary synthesis was not a conceptual synthesis, so much as an institutional synthesis. However, it’s not clear that there is consensus about what it means to claim that a theory is unified. M. Morrison’s (2000) recent work on unification and explanation could serve as good starting point for discussion.
This session will present papers on the history of the use of visual images in biological inquiry and in representing attitudes toward the living world. The title, "From Macro to Micro: Exploring the History of Visual Images in Biology," is broad enough to include topics from different eras and different areas of biology. At the moment, there are two proposed papers for this session. "A Brief History of Imaging Proteins" will examine how representations of protein molecules in research articles have changed since the 1950s and will argue that the changes have been influenced by aesthetic as well as technological and scientific factors. The second paper, "From Theology to Ecology: The Grotesque in Biological Inquiry," will explore the history of the ideological uses of imaginary organisms from the Middle Ages to the present.
I’m looking for people interested in participating in a session devoted to the history of horticulture. Papers could include such topics as plant exploration, plant breeding, garden design, popular knowledge, and the development of academic programs.
Rhetoric as the art of persuading has been contrasted with argument and logic since the time of the Greek philosophers. Rhetorical skill consists in getting others to embrace certain beliefs, opinions or judgements which the speaker or writer wishes them to adopt. Both sound argument and rhetorical techniques have usually been used in scientific discourse, and different trends in historiographical analysis tend to emphasize either one or the other aspect of scientific writing. Rhetorical analysis of any type of discourse (including scientific works) may disclose several relevant features that contribute to effective communication of beliefs, such as: a) Attempts (by the author) to convey the impression that he/she is a credible person (good character, honest intentions, competence, devoted to the truth, ...) and that his/her opponent are the converse. b) Attempts to influence the readers by appealing to their emotions (admiration, disdain, hatred, fear, ...), interests, imagination, prejudices (including naive beliefs), etc. c) Persuasive but false or incomplete arguments (use of peculiar examples, analogy, metaphors, authority, etc.). d) A convincing structure of the discourse accompanied by an adequate style, designed to suppress critical thought and leading the readers to the intended beliefs. This session will be devoted to the presentation and debate of specific instances of rhetoric in modern biological thought, dealing with questions such as: 1. Which kinds of rhetorical devices were used by the main biologists in their writings, in defending their own views or criticising opposite opinions? 2. Does the very presentation of biological data (the result of observation and experiment) make use of rhetorical devices? 3. To what extent did prominent scientists of the past use rhetoric as an essential part of their scientific works? 4. Was the use of rhetoric a strategy for convincing readers when sound arguments were scarce? 5. If one attempts to "clean" biological works of rhetorical devices, will they loose their cogency? 6. Was rhetoric replaced by cold arguments as biological theories got stronger arguments and a better empirical foundation? 7. Is rhetoric an essential part of the current controversies in biology? 8. Do present textbooks use rhetoric in presenting accepted theories?
Several of us are trying to treat conceptual change in science scientifically, in particular as a selection process. Linguists have been treating language scientifically for years. A few are now trying to treat it as a selection process in particular; e.g., Salikoko Mufene at the University of Chicago and Bill Crofts from Manchester.
Department of Philosophy
Blacksburg, VA 24061-0126
Phone: (540) 231-4564
Fax: (540) 231-6367
Department of Philosophy
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University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742
Phone: (301) 405-5699
Fax: (301) 405-5690
History and Philosophy of Science
Bloomington, IN 47405
Phone: (812) 855-3195
Treasurer & Membership Guru
College Studies, Box 354330
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195
Phone: (206) 543-6358
Fax: (206) 685-9544
Department of History
Hamden, CT 06518
Phone: (203) 582-3475
Assistant to the Dean of Liberal Arts
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Phone: (203) 582-5269
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Monte Pichincha 18
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Christian C. Young
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Phone: (414) 298-9138
Council through 2001
Department of Biological Sciences
1200 Amsterdam Ave., P.O. Box 5521
New York, NY 10027
3514 NW 50 Ave.
Gainesville, FL 32605
Cor van der Weele
Center for Bioethics and Health Law
Heidelberglaan 2, 3584 CS Utrecht
Council through 2003
Department of Philosophy
Arizona State University
Tempe, AZ 85287-2004
History of Science & Technology
University of Minnesota
116 Church Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Department of Philosophy
336 O’Shaughessy Hall
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Deadline for Spring 2001 Newsletter: March 15, 2001 Contact Chris Young