The news archive of the German Society for Philosophy of Science (GWP).

Submitted by Marie I. Kaiser (Bielefeld University).

The Department of Philosophy within the Faculty for History, Philosophy, and Theology is seeking to fill the position of a

Junior Professor for Philosophy of Science (W1, no tenure track)

starting as soon as possible.

The successful candidate (f/m) has an independent and innovative research profile in the philosophy of science, which is closely linked to at least one of the research foci in philosophy of science of the Department: (1) philosophy of the life sciences and (2) science and society. We expect philosophical research aiming for peer-reviewed publications of international renown.

The successful candidate shows an autonomous and active manner of working, the ability to work as a member of a team, and a clear willingness to contribute to shaping the Department’s activities. Applicants are preferred to show documented experience in acquiring research grants. We expect a commitment to apply for third-party funding, to develop new interdisciplinary collaborations, and to engage in the existing research projects and collaborations at the “Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies of Science (I2SoS)“.

The successful applicant will teach and supervise students from all bachelor and master programs in philosophy and from the master program “History, Economics and Philosophy of Science (HEPS)“. Successful candidates are expected to have appropriate teaching experience in philosophy of science, to teach on subjects within philosophy of science and theoretical philosophy beyond their own research foci, and to adapt their teaching styles and approaches to the specific needs and capabilities of our students.

Preconditions for the professorship are a university degree in philosophy, pedagogical aptitude, as well as a doctorate in philosophy of science. Applications from abroad are welcome. Applicants for which German is not a first language should be able to teach courses in German, in addition to courses in English, within about a year of hiring.

The appointment will be for three years. Given a successful evaluation in accordance with the general Bielefeld guidelines, it can be extended for another three years.

Applications from suitably qualified handicapped and severely handicapped persons are explicitly encouraged.

Bielefeld University has received a number of awards for its achievements in the provision of equal opportunity and has been recognized as a family-friendly university. The university welcomes applications from women. This is particularly true with regard both to academic and technical posts as well as positions in Information Technology and Craft. Applications are handled according to the state’s equal opportunity statutes.

Applications must include the usual documents (cv, list of publications, list of courses taught, copies of academic degrees). Applications must also include (1) a five-page overview of your research profile, including an outline of a future research project, (2) a three-page summary of your dissertation, (3) a three-page teaching concept, and (4) one of your best publications (up to 20 pages). The application can be written in German or English.

The Faculty places great emphasis on gender equality and expects the future post holder to contribute to its continued implementation.

Applications should be send by e-mail as a single PDF document to
by October 31, 2019.

Alternatively, applications can be sent by regular mail to:
Universität Bielefeld
Fakultät für Geschichtswissenschaft, Philosophie und Theologie
Postfach 10 01 31
33501 Bielefeld

Please do not send any originals, as the received documents will be destroyed at the end of the proceedings.

Please note that risks to confidentiality and unauthorized access by third parties cannot be ruled out when communicating via unencrypted e-mail. Information on the processing of personal data can be found at

Submitted by Marij van Strien (Bergische Universität Wuppertal).


Call for Papers

How Quantum Mechanics Changed Philosophy

Bergische Universität Wuppertal, January 16-17, 2020

The aim of this workshop is to explore the implications of quantum mechanics for philosophy, both historically and in contemporary debates. Quantum mechanics is generally regarded as a fundamental theory of nature, and at the same time as problematic to understand. The particular issues raised by quantum mechanics have had repercussions for the general understanding of science as well as of the nature of reality. Many philosophers of natural science have been particularly interested in quantum mechanics – reflections on quantum mechanics play a role in the philosophical work of e.g. Reichenbach, Cassirer, Popper, Kuhn, Feyerabend, Putnam, Van Fraassen and Cartwright. At the same time, it has been argued that in certain areas of philosophy, quantum mechanics is unjustifiably ignored.

The workshop aims to explore the roles of reflections on quantum mechanics in wider philosophical debates, from the early 20th century until the present, concerning for example causality, realism, the nature of objects, naturalism, and the very idea of what a scientific theory can look like.

Keynote speakers

  • Yemima Ben-Menahem (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
  • Michael Esfeld (University of Lausanne)
  • Jan Faye (University of Copenhagen)
  • F. A. Muller (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
  • Juha Saatsi (University of Leeds)

In order to apply, please send an abstract of max. 400 words to, by 1 November.

Submitted by Jan Baedke (Ruhr University Bochum).


Call for Applications:
1x Post-Doc position and 2x PhD positions in philosophy, history, and social studies of biology, Department of Philosophy I, Ruhr University Bochum

The Institute of Philosophy I at the Ruhr University Bochum seeks applications for one Post-Doctoral Research Position and two PhD Student Positions in the field of philosophy, history and social studies of biology. They will be part of the Emmy Noether-rese¬arch group “The Return of the Organism in the Biosciences: Theoretical, Historical, and Social Dimensions” (PI Dr. Jan Baedke), financed by the DFG (German Research Foundation). Project description:

• Duration: 3 years
• Planned starting date: 1st January 2020
• Deadline for application: 15th October 2019

For details on the Call for Applications for the Post-Doctoral Researcher Position, please visit:
For details on the Call for Applications for the PhD Student Positions, please visit:

For further inquiries please contact

Submitted by Catherine Herfeld (University of Zurich).



LOCATION: Institute of Philosophy, University of Zurich
DATE: Saturday, October 12, 2019
KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Cailin O’Connor (University of California, Irvine)
ORGANIZER: Catherine Herfeld (University of Zurich, Switzerland)

This is a one-day workshop that enables discussion about Cailin O’Connor’s recent book ‘The Origins of Unfairness’ published in 2019 by Oxford University Press. The workshop will furthermore discuss methodological questions that this research gives directly or indirectly rise to, namely the status and usefulness of formal and empirical methods in philosophy, an issue that currently gains more attention in philosophical discussion. There are a few slots for contributed talks. We invite submissions that either directly engage with Cailin O’Connor’s research or that aim to contribute to this ongoing discussion on the role of formal and empirical methods in philosophy more generally.

Please submit a short abstract of 100 words in English and with a title (copied in the body of the email) to the latest by September 24, 2019. Authors will be notified shortly thereafter.

Apart from all matters related to O’Connor’s research, some of the more generally questions that will also be discussed at the workshop are:
• What can formal methods, such as game theory and evolutionary game theory, teach us in
philosophy, particularly in ethics, as opposed to more traditional methods?
• Is the next natural step of formal philosophy to go empirical? If so, how can we still
distinguish it from science?
• Is there a difference between ethics and other philosophical areas, such as philosophy of
science, regarding the usefulness of empirical methods?
• Are formal methods from economics appropriate for the study of issues related to
feminism and inequity?
• Are there risks to using simplified models to study social phenomena where a great deal
is at stake?

For further inquiries, please contact the organiser at:

Submitted by Petter Sandstad (University of Rostock).


Volume 23.2 of Logical Analysis and History of Philosophy will explore the history of the closely related concepts of form, kind, and essence. These concepts are currently the objects of much study, in particular within  metaphysics and philosophy of science. Yet much of the historical background remains under-researched.

Possible topics for papers are any historical treatment of these concepts within philosophy. Naturally, Aristotle remains the locus classicus, and papers on Aristotle and form (eidos, morphē), kind (genos), and essence (to ti ēn einai) are very welcome. However, other figures are also highly relevant. Platonic ideas are without a doubt an important precursor to Aristotle’s notions. And later treatments of these issues in ancient or medieval philosophy would also fit well into the volume. All three concepts later received much criticism during the early modern period, among others from Descartes, Locke, and Giordano Bruno, to such a degree that these concepts  more or less fell out of favour – although, they were also defended or used by philosophers such as Leibniz, Bacon, and Spinoza. Papers dealing with the criticism of forms, kinds, and essences in early modern philosophy, as well as their defence, would likewise be of  interest. Despite  the early modern critique, forms, kinds, and essences remained parts of philosophy, although they were occasionally seen as eccentric and peripheral. Things changed again in the early 20th century: especially the concept of essence (Wesen) resurfaced in Husserl, as well as Jean Hering and Roman Ingarden. Further, Peter Geach’s essentialism and his thesis of sortal-relative identity have been more or less forgotten, while Saul Kripke’s modal rehabilitation of essentiality has become part of the mainstream.

According to the current publication plans of Logical Analysis and History of Philosophy, our issue will appear in print in late 2020. Since Logical Analysis and History of Philosophy is a peer-reviewed journal, we will need to receive submissions by 30 October 2019.

Ludger Jansen (Bochum/Rostock) and Petter Sandstad (Rostock) will serve as Guest-Editors for this volume. For further inquiries, please contact

Ludger Jansen (

Petter Sandstad (

Submitted by Niels Martens (RWTH Aachen University).

Special Issue on Dark Matter & Modified Gravity

Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics

Deadline: DECEMBER 2019


Astrophysical and cosmological observations as well as explanatory gaps in the Standard Model of particle physics imply the existence of dark matter and/or a modification of our best theory of space, time and gravity, namely general relativity and its Newtonian limit. We invite historical and/or philosophical contributions on dark matter (DM) and/or modified gravity (MG) and especially the interface between these two research programmes. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • The underdetermination between DM and MG
  • Is a strict conceptual distinction between DM and MG justified? How does this relate to the distinction between matter and spacetime?
  • What are the explanatory successes and failures of the DM research programme, and of the MG research programme? Which models of explanation are being employed by the respective programmes, and how do those relate?
  • How do data, constraints and explanations at the LHC, in astrophysics and cosmology relate? Could the LHC, in principle, confirm dark matter by itself?
  • Virtues and vices of simplified (dark matter) models. Do simplified models explain?
  • Hybrid models, fifth forces & exotic theories that are neither MG nor DM
  • Connections between dark energy and DM/MG
  • How to proceed in light of the small scale problems?
  • Novel predictions, fine-tuning and falsifiability
  • Sociology of the DM-MG debate (but please note that papers should in the first instance be historical and/or philosophical)

Guest editors:

Miguel Ángel Carretero Sahuquillo (University of Wuppertal)

Michael Krämer (RWTH Aachen University)

Dennis Lehmkuhl (University of Bonn)

Niels Martens (RWTH Aachen University) (Contact person:

Erhard Scholz (University of Wuppertal)

Submissions should follow the standard guidelines of the journal. When submitting, authors should select, for Issue Type, “VSI: Dark Matter & Modified Gravity.”  There’s a drop-down menu when you begin the submission process.

Submitted by Andrea Reichenberger (Paderborn University).


Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren, sehr geehrte Kolleg*innen,

Wir möchten Ihnen den Pilot für ein Mentoring-Programm für akademische Philosoph*innen von SWIP Germany e.V. vorstellen und Sie einladen, bei Interesse als Mentor*in oder Mentee teilzunehmen.

Mit diesem Programm möchte SWIP Germany einen Beitrag zur Geschlechtergerechtigkeit und Chancengleichheit leisten und dazu beitragen, die Unterrepräsentation von Frauen auf den höheren Qualifikationsstufen (vor allem auf der Ebene von PostDocs und Professor*innen) zu beheben, die in der deutschsprachigen akademischen Philosophie nach wie vor besteht.

Wir wollen “Nachwuchs”wissenschaftler*innen die Möglichkeit bieten, Wissenschaftler*innen, die bereits einige Karrierestufen weiter sind, punktuell und zu konkreten Problemen um Rat zu fragen. Anders als bei anderen Mentoring-Programmen geht es nicht zwingend um eine längerfristige Mentoring-Beziehung. Wir haben folgendes Vorgehen geplant:

– Die Mentor*innen geben in einem Formular an, zu welchen Themen sie Tipps geben können und wollen:

– Potentielle Mentees können ein Formular ausfüllen und die Themen angeben, zu welchen sie Beratungsbedarf haben:

– SWIP Germany sucht eine*n passende*n Mentor*in und fragt an, ob diese*r für ein Gespräch zu den von der Mentee angegebenen Themen zur Verfügung steht. Das Gespräch kann persönlich, telefonisch oder über Skype erfolgen und soll in der Regel nicht mehr als max. 1,5 Stunden in Anspruch nehmen.

–  Wir behandeln Ihr Engagement natürlich vertraulich, d.h. SWIP Germany veröffentlicht nicht, wer als Mentor*in oder Mentee involviert ist.

– Gerne können potentielle Mentorinnen zugleich auch Ihr Interesse äußern, Mentees zu sein. Das heißt konkret: Haben Sie als Mentorin das Formular ausgefüllt, dürfen Sie auch gerne das Formular für Mentees einreichen.

SWIP Germany bemüht sich darum, kein*e Mentor*in überproportional oft für Beratungsgespräche anzufragen, und zudem muss natürlich kein*e Mentor*in jede einzelne Anfrage annehmen. Ebenso können Mentees bestimmte Personen als Mentoren ablehnen. Wir sind dankbar, wenn Sie sich ein- bis zweimal im Jahr Zeit dafür nehmen, einer “Nachwuchs”wissenschaftlerin mit Ihrem Wissen zur Seite zu stehen!

Website des Programms:

Falls Sie Rückfragen oder Anregungen zum Programm haben, zögern Sie bitte nicht, sich bei uns zu melden:

Wir freuen uns über Ihr Engagement für mehr Chancengleichheit in der deutschsprachigen Philosophie.

Mit den besten Grüßen
Ihr SWIP-Mentoring-Team: Christine Bratu, Lisa Herzog, Insa Lawler, Johanna Müller, Andrea Reichenberger, Almut von Wedelstaedt