Pittsburgh, HPS
Department Of Philosophy
Alumnus
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Areas of Specialization
Philosophy of Biology
  •  129
    Emergent properties and the context objection to reduction
    Biology and Philosophy 20 (4): 715-734. 2005.
    Reductionism is a central issue in the philosophy of biology. One common objection to reduction is that molecular explanation requires reference to higher-level properties, which I refer to as the context objection. I respond to this objection by arguing that a well-articulated notion of a mechanism and what I term mechanism extension enables one to accommodate the context-dependence of biological processes within a reductive explanation. The existence of emergent features in the context could b…Read more
  •  71
    Why Images?
    Medicine Studies 2 (3): 161-173. 2010.
    Given that many imaging technologies in biology and medicine are non-optical and generate data that is essentially numerical, it is a striking feature of these technologies that the data generated using them are most frequently displayed in the form of semi-naturalistic, photograph-like images. In this paper, I claim that three factors underlie this: (1) historical preferences, (2) the rhetorical power of images, and (3) the cognitive accessibility of data presented in the form of images. The th…Read more
  •  24
    The changing landscape of the philosophy of medicine
    Philosophy Compass 14 (8). 2019.
    Philosophy Compass, EarlyView.
  •  21
    Proceedings of the Pittsburgh Workshop in History and Philosophy of Biology, Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh, March 23-24 2001 Session 3: Natural Selection as a Causal Theory.
  •  21
    Perceiving causation via videomicroscopy
    Philosophy of Science 74 (5): 996-1006. 2007.
    Although scientific images have begun to receive significant attention from philosophers, one type of image has thus far been ignored: moving images. As techniques such as live cell imaging and videomicroscopy are becoming increasingly important in many areas of biology, however, this oversight needs to be corrected. Biologists often claim that there are relevant differences between video and static images. Most interesting is the idea that video images allow us to see causal relationships. By i…Read more
  • Any account of extrapolation from animal models to humans must confront two basic challenges: explain how extrapolation can be justified even when there are causally relevant differences between model and target, and explain how the suitability of a model can be established given only limited information about the target. We argue that existing approaches to extrapolation—either in terms of capacities or mechanisms—do not adequately address these challenges. However, we propose a further elabora…Read more