“Where philosophers of science have claimed the social structure of science works well, their arguments tend to rely on things other than peer review, and that where specific benefits have been claimed for peer review, empirical research has so far failed to bear these out. Comparing this to the downsides of peer review, most prominently the massive amount of time a..
A group of undergraduates at Northeastern University studying philosophy, political science, computer science, data science, economics, and other subjects teamed up on a surprisingly interesting and sophisticated project to rank the cutest dog in the university’s Department of Philosophy and Religion. (more…)
The 2018 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) report, a national assessment exercise that attempts to measure research quality at institutions of higher education in the country, has just been released. (more…)
Richard Hamming, a mathematician and scientist who worked on the Manhattan Project at the Los Alamos Laboratory, Bell Labs, and the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, gave a talk, “You and Your Research,” at a Bell Communications Research Colloquium Seminar in 1986, a few years before he died, on the difference between the great scientists who make s..
To what lengths do departments and universities go to improve their rankings? In one case, a school is being accused of firing a number of its philosophy lecturers and using the funds to give contracts to professors elsewhere so they can have honorary appointments at the school to improve its research profile. (more…)
A team of 270 researchers have now published the findings from their “Reproducibility Project”—an attempt to replicate the findings in published psychology papers—in Science, and the results are dismal. Nina Strohminger (Yale) and Elizabeth Gilbert (Virginia) discuss the findings in an essay at The Conversation:
Almost all of the original published studies (9..
Global Colleagues is a one-to-one, academic, multidisciplinary partnership program between scholars in the Global North and South working on issues related to poverty. The first cohort of partnerships began this past May, and the project manager, Robert Lepenies (European University Institute), informs me that there is a “high proportion of philosophers among the pa..
Patricia Marino is associate professor of philosophy at the University of Waterloo. She works in ethics, epistemology, the philosophy of sex and love, and the philosophy of economics. She also has a blog, The Kramer is Now, full of amusing and insightful thoughts about philosophy, culture, economics, politics, and various aspects of life. Below is a guest post* by h..
Margaret Atherton (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) writes in asking about how philosophy professors and students can best take advantage of the funding their schools offer for undergraduate research programs. (more…)
Laboratory assistants have to do all sorts of terrible, embarrassing things, but surely this is among the silliest: Enter a bar in Grenoble, France. Identify people who look moderately drunk. Walk up to them, tap them on the shoulder, and say something along the lines of, “Uh, hey, this is awkward, but, would you be interested in answering some questions about philo..
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), as usual, is funding a number of seminars and institutes for school teachers and college professors next summer, and several of them are being run by philosophers. They are: (more…)
Chris Eliasmith holds a Canada Research Chair in theoretical neuroscience at the University of Waterloo. He has a joint appointment in philosophy and systems design engineering. He also holds an appointment in computer science there. Over at the Ideas Can blog he discusses the challenges of interdisciplinary work. He says:
Not really a philosopher. And not really..
The Campaign for Better Citation and Credit-Giving Practices is a new site aimed at “providing a forum for individuals in academic philosophy to bring to light general instances of work not receiving due credit or citations.” It offers a forum in which to “(A) argue that particular works or authors have been unfairly neglected (i.e. not adequately cited or otherwise..
A graduate student in philosophy asks:
I really enjoyed the daily habits of routine research post. I am wondering if you could open up a new discussion that addresses the related issues with regards to philosophers who use English as their second language. In my own experiences, doing research in a non-native language often comes with unique challenges that call ..
Philosophers, I have been asked to ask you all about reference manager / bibliographic software, such as Endnote, Qiqqa, Mendeley, Zotero, etc. Do you use any of these? Is there one in particular you would recommend?
Somewhere along the line many physicists have come to believe that it must be possible to formulate a theory without observational input, based on pure logic and some sense of aesthetics. They must believe their brains have a mystical connection to the universe and pure power of thought will tell them the laws of nature. But the only logical requirement to choose ax..
Joshua Smart, a philosophy graduate student at the University of Missouri,is once again coordinating virtual dissertation writers groups (previously). He writes:
While advisors and committees are important, it can be incredibly helpful to discuss one’s work with peers in a lower-stakes environment, and it can be particularly enlightening to do so with those who t..
ainstream political philosophy is seen as irrelevant… because of the bizarre way it has developed since Rawls (a bizarreness not recognized as such by its practitioners because of the aforementioned norms of disciplinary socialization). Social justice theory should be reconnected with its real-world roots, the correction of injustices, which means that rectificato..
Sought: examples of footnotes or endnotes in philosophical works that should not be missed. Of course, every footnote in everything you’ve written falls into that category, I know, but what about the works of others? Let’s be as broad-minded as possible as to what makes a note noteworthy here. It could be that the note:
- strangely makes a crucial point that quite..
What medical ethics needs is more and better philosophy—and a return to the adventurousness and originality of its pioneering days. There have been successes—euthanasia and better treatment of animals to mention just two. But the field has in many ways dried up or become dominated by moralists bent on protecting privacy and confidentiality at great cost and ‘getting..
Don Howard (Notre Dame) has a post up at his Science Matters blog called “On the Pseudoproblem of Interdisciplinarity.” It begins by recounting some of the familiar complaints about the obstacles to interdisciplinary work that he has heard over the years:
From the beginning of my life in the academy, back in the 1960s, I have heard again, and again, and again the..
Philosophers widely violate the academic norm to “cite work that is clearly relevant to the topic at hand,” claim Meena Krishnamurthy (Michigan) and Jessica Wilson (Toronto), in a post at the What’s Wrong? blog.
They identify some varieties of citation failure, and argue that it’s a problem worth taking seriously. Failure to cite people’s relevant work deprives ..
There are many little everyday steps leading up to the production of a philosophical manuscript. Charles Rathkopf (CUNY) writes in asking philosophers about “the daily habits of routine research.”
Do they take notes on paper, then transfer to a computer? Does anyone still try to write anything substantial with pen and paper? What bibliographic system is best? Do ..
The following guest post* is by Marcus Arvan (Tampa). Marcus runs The Philosophers’ Cocoon, a helpful blog aimed at early-career philosophers. Last week saw the posting of a report on philosophers’ citation practices by Kieran Healy. Marcus has written on this topic a few times over the years at The Philosophers’ Cocoon (the latest is here), and so I asked him if he..
Would the philosophers who populate the canon have gotten tenure? Would they have survived the Research Excellence Framework (REF) assessments in the UK? Lloyd Strickland (Manchester Metropolitan University) is skeptical:
Immanuel Kant might look worthy of the nod – his three Critiques shaped a lot of the philosophy that came afterwards. However, those works were..
The Philosopher’s Index, an academic philosophy database available through the libraries of many universities and colleges, is rolling out a service that contains not merely abstracts (which it has long featured), but the full text of its indexed articles, according to a recent press release. Called “The Philosopher’s Index with Full Text,” it provides articles from..