Drew Johnson Awarded 2019 Millikan Research Fellowship

ECOM member Drew Johnson was one of the recipients of this year’s Ruth Garrett Millikan Graduate Research Fellowship. This fellowship was created in 2017 with the aid of generous admirers, friends, and colleagues of Professor Ruth Garrett Millikan, one of the world’s most distinguished living philosophers, and a cherished member of UConn’s philosophical community. The recipients are outstanding ABD students in the Philosophy Department who use the fellowship to further their graduate research study in the summer of the award year. Congratulations, Drew!

Phillip Barron to Attend Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute

ECOM member Phillip Barron has been admitted to this summer’s Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute. Sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation, this summer research program on mind, cognition, and intelligence will be held at the University of St. Andrews from 6/30/19 – 7/20/19.  

Phillip applied to work with other philosophers, cognitive and neuroscientists, and artists on the relationship between intelligence and narrative. His dissertation gives an account of personal identity in which persons are biological, psychological, and narrative entities. Trans-disciplinary thinking is at the core of his work. Because his project spans philosophy, art, and cognitive science, it will benefit from the opportunity to engage with the DISI faculty and other participants from the cognitive and social sciences. Despite the reputation philosophers have for being solitary thinkers, Phillip believes philosophy is done best in a collaborative setting, listening and exchanging ideas with others. 

Dorit Bar-On to Lecture at Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute

ECOM Director Dorit Bar-On will be participating as a faculty lecturer at this summer’s Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute. Sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation, this summer research program on mind, cognition, and intelligence will be held at the University of St. Andrews from 6/30/19 – 7/20/19. Dorit’s lectures will take place July 1-2.  See here for more information on the institute.

Upcoming Paris Workshop, 6/17/19: “Animal Linguistics: Take the Leap!”

The study of non-human communication took off in the 1980’s following the foundational work of Seyfarth and Cheney. Since then, by comparing human language to non-human systems, biologists have explored what makes human language unique, when human language evolved from animal communicative systems, and whether the origin of language is gestural or vocal. However, after 40 years of intense research on many taxa, the communication capacities of non-human animals remain little understood, and so does the origin of human language. One of the main obstacles appears to be a lack of consensus on analytic methods. To address this issue, a field of animal linguistics is emerging, with the aim of studying animal communicative systems as formal systems, using general methods borrowed from linguistics.

This workshop aims to bring together leading linguists and biologists, all pioneers in the field of animal linguistics, in order to provide insights on how to combine linguistic and biological approaches to the study of animal communication. We will cover several fields of linguistics, from formal to quantitative approaches, and to apply their methods to a diversity of taxa, such as birds and primates. In addition, the workshop will consider both gestural and vocal communication.

The panel of speakers will consist of Stuart Semple (University of Roehampton), Marion Laporte (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle), Sabrina Engesser (University of Zurich), Kirsty Graham (University of York) and Thom Scott-Phillips (Central European University).

Attendees will have the opportunity to present their research during a poster session that will be
held after the lunch break.

Submission deadline for poster: June 1st 2019 (250-word abstract to be sent to melissa.berthet.ac@gmail.com)

M. Botero Publishes Paper Given @ ECOM’s `18 Emotions/Expressions CONF

Maria Botero, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Sam Houston State Universtiy, published a paper in the International Journal of Comparative Psychology in 2018. A version of this paper, titled “Bringing Touch Back to the Study of Emotions in Human and Non-Human Primates: A Theoretical Exploration,” was presented at ECOM’s 2018 Conference on Emotions and Expressions. More information about this paper can be found here.

The Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute (DISI) 2019

Please read on about this funded summer opportunity for graduate students, postdocs, and early career faculty. (Please note that ECOM Director is among DISI’s international faculty this summer!)

DISI aims to bring together promising graduate students, postdocs, and early career faculty interested in the study of mind, cognition, and intelligence for several weeks of transdisciplinary exploration. The first year was a great success, and we are delighted to be expanding the scope of DISI in 2019! We are increasing the number of participants, welcoming back alumni, and broadening the topics offered by faculty. We are also introducing a new “storytellers” track to host artists-in-residence at DISI. We hope that this vibrant community will work together to develop new ways of engaging with big questions about intelligence, cognition, and the mind.

You can find more details about the Diverse Intelligences Summer Institute (DISI for short), as well as a short video, at www.diverseintelligencessummer.com.

We are holding the 2019 Summer Institute at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, from June 30 to July 20. As you know, this is a beautiful seaside location, easily accessible from Edinburgh International Airport, and a picturesque train journey North from London. We’ve already assembled an outstanding international faculty (www.diverseintelligencessummer.com/faculty), and more are yet to be added. In addition to lectures and discussions, DISI offers participants the opportunity to develop collaborative interdisciplinary research projects with support from faculty and staff.

Please forward this announcement to talented graduate students, postdocs, and other early career researchers who might be interested. We are also hoping to reach writers and artists of all types for our storyteller track! In both the academic and storyteller tracks, we are looking for creative, open-minded participants who want to take intellectual risks and break down disciplinary barriers in the spirit of dialogue and discovery.

The main application deadline is February 15. Storyteller and alumni applications will be rolling. Application portals can be found at www.diverseintelligencessummer.com/apply

For questions, please contact Associate Director, Dr. Kensy Cooperrider, at disi@ucla.edu.