[SydPhil] HPS Research Seminar Series Forthcoming
debbie.castle at sydney.edu.au
Mon Mar 10 14:19:01 AEDT 2014
HPS RESEARCH SEMINARS 2014 (to date) HELD IN CONJUCTION WITH Sydney Centre for the Foundations of Science<http://sydney.edu.au/foundations_of_science/contacts/>
SCIENCE MEETING ROOM 450, 4TH FLOOR CARSLAW BUILDING, CAMPERDOWN CAMPUS
PLEASE NOTE NEW TIME: 4PM TO 6PM (approx.)
KATHERINE DUNLOP (University of Texas) "Arithmetic and Geometry in Poincaré's Science and Hypothesis"
It is usually supposed that Poincaré's Science and Hypothesis contains a unified view of mathematics and physical science. But its defense of a role for intuition in arithmetic does not fit well with the conventionalism Poincaré advocates elsewhere in the book. After bringing out the conflict, I argue that the most usual way of resolving it does not succeed. That is to suppose the sciences are arranged in a hierarchy such that arithmetic is presupposed by geometry, which is presupposed by mechanics, etc. On the usual reading, Poincaré takes arithmetic to depend on an a priori intuition which underlies the notion of natural number (and with it the principle of mathematical induction), and is thereby seen to underlie all science. In contrast, I maintain that Poincaré conceives mathematical reasoning as a general type, of which the justification of arithmetical notions is just one instance, distinct from its application to geometry. The sense in which intuition is foundational for all science is that it helps us to decide on conventions, by showing them to be appropriate in light of our experience. So Poincaré's account of arithmetic has a place in his overall view of science, just a different place than is usually supposed.
TUESDAY 18TH MARCH
SILVIA DE MONTE (ENS) "The evolution of groups and microbial collectives"
Microbial populations display a number of collective forms of organisation, some of which have been integrated into complex life cycles. For instance, clusters or flakes of cells confer protection against stress to yeast and bacteria, swarming powers collective foraging in Myxobacteria, and recurrent aggregation of sparse cells allows the development of fruiting bodies in Myxobacteria and social amoebas. In this talk, I will present different ways natural selection can drive the evolution of groups composed of replicating particles in particular, I will focus on setting when collectives are composed of particles of two types, which provide different contributions to collective functionality. A classical conundrum associated with such systems is that functional collectives exist, in spite of the disruptive effects of free-riding on groups composed of cooperative particles. I will use mathematical models that take explicitly into account the process of group formation to show that the evolution of functional collectives can stem from simple features of the composing particles, such as differential stickiness. However, something more is required if selection is to shift to the collective level, In concluding, I will discuss the value of a mechanistic perspective on the evolutionary emergence of multicellular life forms.
SAHOTRA SARKAR (TEXAS)
JAMIE STARK "Before Anthrax was Anthrax: Human-Animal Disease Dynamics in Britain and Australia"
SEBASTIAN SEQUOIAH-GRAYSON (University of Sydney)
JAKOB SPRICKERHOF (Leeds)
LIZ IRVINE (ANU)
Unit for History and Philosophy of Science
Room 441, Carslaw Building F07| THE UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY NSW 2006
T: + 61 2 9351 4226 E: debbie.castle at sydney.edu.au
Office Open: Monday Tuesday and Wednesday
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