Philosophy of Science

image of planet

Philosophy of Science is the study of conceptual and methodological issues arising from scientific theories and scientific practice. It embraces both topics specific to particular sciences, and general issues of relevance to all the sciences. The Department of Philosophy at Western has long been recognized as Canada’s preeminent centre for the study of Philosophy of Science, and as among the world’s leading programmes in Philosophy of Science.

The department has strength in history and philosophy of physics, logic and foundations of mathematics, scientific methodology, philosophy of biology and philosophy of neuroscience. The Department maintains close ties with the Rotman Institute of Philosophy, which is committed to fostering and supporting dialogue and collaboration between philosophers and scientists, and building bridges between the humanities and the sciences.

At the University of Western Ontario, we believe that Philosophy of Science requires active engagement with contemporary science and scientists, and with the history of science. Philosophers of science at Western maintain active contact with faculty members in Biology, Applied Mathematics, Mathematics, Physics and Astronomy, Medicine, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Psychology, and Linguistics, and with the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics.

The department hosts an annual conference, Contemporary Issues in the Philosophy of Physics, which is held in conjunction with a graduate conference on the Philosophy of Logic, Mathematics, and Physics.

Gillian Barker (Philosophy of biology)
John Bell (Mathematical Logic and Philosophy of Mathematics; Mathematics and Aesthetics)
Louis Charland (Philosophy of medicine and psychiatry, with emphasis on philosophical foundations of the affective sciences)
Eric Desjardins (Philosophy of biology, environmental philosophy)
Robert DiSalle (Spacetime theories, history & philosophy of science)
Wayne Myrvold (Philosophy of physics; confirmation theory; probability in science)
Kathleen Okruhlik (Feminist philosophy of science)
Chris Smeenk (Philosophy of physics, philosophy of cosmology)
Rob Stainton (Philosophical issues in cognitive science)
Jacqueline Sullivan (Philosophy of neuroscience)
Chris Viger (Philosophical issues in cognitive science) 

William Demopoulos
William Harper

Associated Research Groups

The Rotman Institute of Philosophy