Symposium: Reciprocity and Social Cognition

Reciprocity and Social Cognition Symposium
Berlin School of Mind and Brain, 23rd-25th March 2015

Submissions close: October 1st 2014
Notifications sent: October 15th 2014

For more details, please see our website:

The Berlin School of Mind and Brain is pleased to announce the Reciprocity and Social Cognition interdisciplinary symposium, to be held at the Berlin School of Mind and Brain from the 23rd to 25th March, 2015.

Reciprocity is a common feature of much social cognition. It is what separates a case in which two people attend to the same object simultaneously from a case of genuine joint attention; and what separates a case in which two people act in parallel from a case of genuine joint action. However, traditional accounts of the foundations of social cognition have underplayed the existence of reciprocity and treated social cognition as a process that rests on observation and not genuine interaction. We are holding a three-day workshop to come to better understand the notion of reciprocity and to explore how the notion of reciprocity can be used to illuminate debates in adjacent fields of social cognition.

Confirmed keynotes are Richard Moran (Philosophy, Harvard), Julia Fischer (Cognitive Ethology, Göttingen) and Natalie Sebanz (Cognitive Science, CEU Budapest). Other confirmed participants include Elisabeth Pacherie (Philosophy, Institut Jean Nicod), Henrike Moll (Psychology, Southern California), Stephen Butterfill (Philosophy, Warwick) and Isabel Dziobek (Neuroscience, HU Berlin).

The workshop is organised around six related symposia:
(1) Intentional communication,
(2) The neuroscience of dialogue,
(3) Socio-cognitive disorders,
(4) Social exchange: insights from computational neuroscience,
(5) Perspective-taking, and
(6) Joint action.

We welcome submissions for poster presentations on any of the six topics listed above. Submissions from all fields of empirical and theoretical cognitive science are encouraged. In place of poster submissions, philosophers should consider submitting short ‘flash’ talks (of around seven minutes or ten .ppt slides in length).

We are looking forward to welcoming you in Berlin!

Anna Strasser, Stephen Butterfill, Richard Moore and Olle Blomberg

Conference Announcement

*Conference Announcement*

Human Mind Project

School of Advanced Study, University of London, Senate House
May 23rd, 2014


Tim Crane (University of Cambridge)
Jane Heal (University of Cambridge)
David Papineau (King’s College London)
Michael Wheeler (University of Stirling)


Patrick Haggard (University College London)
Kim Plunkett (University of Oxford)
Tim Shallice (University College London & SISSA, Trieste)
Gabriella Vigliocco (University College London)

After its launch in December 2013, the first public event of the Human Mind Project addresses the meaning of mind – how the term is used by philosophers, and the extent to which philosophical ideas about the nature, mechanism and function of the mind relate to the way that the word is used by neuroscientists and cognitive scientists. This one-day intensive workshop brings together leading philosophers and scientists to discuss what they see to be the key questions facing the study of the mind. The overarching goal is to represent a range of philosophical opinion, from those who embrace naturalistic approaches to the mind to those who are sceptical, as well as to explore potentially fruitful topics for interdisciplinary research.

The Human Mind Project highlights the contribution of the arts and humanities to the study of human nature, and the importance of a comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach to understanding the mind, integrating science and the humanities.

Registration and Scientific Organization

Attendance is free of charge, but space is limited. Please visit the event webpage on the School of Advanced Study’s website and register on Eventbrite:

This conference is funded by the Human Mind Project and organized by Mattia Gallotti ( For further information, contact

Workshop on ‘Intellectual Virtues, Group Knowledge and Education’, University of Edinburgh, 15 May 2014

Eidyn’s new pilot Projects ‘Epistemology of Education‘ and ‘Group Knowledge‘ are hosting a joint workshop on ‘Intellectual Virtues, Group Knowledge and Education’.

Date: 15 May 2014. Venue: Edinburgh Informatics Forum, 4.31/ 4.33.

Mainstream epistemology has recently turned its focus on the concept of intellectual virtues. In this one-day workshop we will explore, both from a philosophical and a cognitive science perspective, how intellectual virtues are related to individual knowers, how they can facilitate group dynamics in epistemic contexts, and how thinking about knowledge in terms of intellectual virtues, both at the individual and group level, can shape the future of education.

Everyone is welcome and the event is free, but ticketed. Click here to book a place.


09:30-09:45    Welcome and Registration

09:45-10:45    Introductory Remarks

09:45-10:15     Orestis Palermos (Edinburgh): The ‘Group Knowledge Project’

10:15-10:45    Adam Carter (Edinburgh): ‘The Epistemology of Education Project’

10:45-12:00     Ben Kotzee (Birmingham):  ’Disciplinary Knowledge and 21st Century Skills (or: Why You Can’t Just Google It)’

In contemporary educational thought, disciplinary knowledge is (just) emerging from a long losing streak. Progressive educational thinkers (inspired by, for instance Rousseau and Dewey) have long attacked the organisation and transmission of knowledge in the form of the traditional subject discipline, preferring, instead, an organisation dependent on the student’s needs or interests. Furthermore, political criticism of the discipline since the 1960?s has focussed on how the traditional subject disciplines entrench the perspectives of the privileged and should be replaced, instead, by themes, projects, experienced-based learning or other student – and/or ability-centred approaches. More recently, anti-disciplinary approaches to the curriculum have been organised under the slogan that schools should not teach facts, but ’21st Century Skills’ (such as problem-solving, critical thinking and creativity). Advocates of 21st Century Skills hold that, since they are now armed with Google, children need not learn facts. In this paper, I sketch the importance of the skills versus knowledge debate in education to epistemology. I trace work in the philosophy of education on this issue to debates regarding Ryle’s distinction between knowing that and knowing how. Specifically, I discuss Ryle’s thoughts about learning to make an academic argument as a form of doing (the so-called Lewis Carroll-problem (Stanley, 2011)). I consider intellectualist and anti-intellectualist analyses of what it is to know how to ‘do’ a discipline and outline the consequences for the skills/knowledge debate as it touches the disciplines. I outline an account of the value of disciplinary knowledge that takes knowledge to be an indispensable part of proficiency in a discipline but that resists seeing knowledge of how to do disciplinary study as itself no more than extensive knowledge that. In closing I outline what a virtue epistemological account of academic knowledge has to offer over an account focussed on critical thinking skill and sketch out the prospects for further philosophical work.

12:00-13:00: Lani Watson (Edinburgh): ‘Why Should Philosophers Study Questioning?’

The practice of questioning is a ubiquitous part of our everyday lives. It plays a central role in our interactions with the world around us and our communication with the people in it. As such it provides a rich topic for philosophical investigation. Despite its widespread and familiar applications however, the practice of questioning has not been the subject of extensive analysis in the Western philosophical tradition. In this paper I argue that philosophers should pay greater attention to both analysing and evaluating the practice of questioning. This is particularly pertinent within an applied philosophical context given the valuable role that questioning plays in a wide variety of practical and everyday settings. I focus in particular on the epistemological significance of questioning arguing that it plays a central role in the acquisition of epistemic goods such as knowledge and understanding. With this in mind, a significant area of applied philosophical interest in which an examination and evaluation of questioning has beneficial applications is education. Furthermore, when examined as a practice questioning can be viewed as an indispensable form of social cohesion As such the practice of questioning emerges as a topic of wide-ranging philosophical import and one worthy of rigorous analysis and evaluation within an applied philosophical context.

13:00-14:00     Lunch

14:00-15:00     Paul Anderson (Edinburgh):  ’Orchestrating the Student Experience with Social Media Tools’

I will describe some work that we did as part of a Principal’s Teaching Award to look at the different ways in which social media and other tools are used across the University to support specific types of pedagogical interaction. I will summarise the findings from our interviews, speculate on whether it is useful to think about the applications in terms of their interaction models, and mention some of the significant emerging themes.

15:00-16:15: Richard Menary (Macquarie): Scaffolding the Cultural Brain: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Do brains acquire the capacity to recognise and manipulate external symbols? The proposal of this paper is that the human brain is an open and adaptive system, which is functionally and structurally plastic (Li 2014, Menary in press). Cortical functions are modifiable by cultural scaffolds such as number systems and alphabets. Our brains are, in this sense, flexible enough to acquire new cultural functions that are not evolutionary endowments and this is the neural basis of how we acquire control over external symbol systems. I also address a problem facing an account of the cultural brain: how do we navigate between the Scylla of innate genetic constraints on the development of the brain for specialised neural circuitry and the Charybdis of unconstrained plasticity (Dehaene in press)? I sketch a model of the development of neural circuitry that underpins symbolic thinking, allowing for both developmental constraints and learning driven plasticity in the brain. Developmental pathways that include environmental scaffolding and learning driven plasticity can lead to canalisation and robustness.

16:15-18:00: Drinks

18:00: Dinner

Workshop: Towards a Framework for Joint Action, Edinburgh, August 25, 2014

Towards a Framework for Joint Action is a full-day workshop held in conjunction with the 23rd IEEE International Symposium on Robot And Human Interactive Communication (IEEE RO-MAN 2014) in Edinburgh on August 25, 2014. The workshop will bring together researchers from robotics, psychology and philosophy to discuss frameworks for thinking about and designing for human-robot joint action.

We invite submission of short papers (maximum four pages), including position papers from philosophers. The submission deadline is May 2, 2014.

For more information, see


  • Rachid Alami – CNRS senior researcher at Laboratoire d’Analyse et d’Architecture des Systèmes LAAS-CNRS, Toulouse, France
  • Jeffrey Bradshaw – Senior Research Scientist at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC)
  • Elisabeth Pacherie – CNRS senior researcher in Philosophy at Institut Jean Nicod (UMR 8129, ENS, EHESS, CNRS), affiliated with the Institue for the Study of Cognition at Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris
  • Julie Shah – Assistant Professor in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, lead the Interactive Robotics Group in CSAIL
  • Cordula Vesper – Social Mind and Body group (SOMBY), Department of Cognitive Science, Central European University, Budapest, Hungary

Extended Deadline: Jagiellonian-Rutgers Conference in Cognitive Science

Dates: 25-29 June 2014
Theme: Cognition and Action
Location: Kraków, Poland
Submission deadline extended: 28 February 2014

The Jagiellonian-Rutgers Conference in Cognitive Science

Invited Speakers

United States

Ernest Lepore

Alan Leslie

Thomas Papathomas

Matthew Stone


Józef Bremer

Grzegorz J. Nalepa

Edward Nęcka

Marcin Szwed 

During the Jagiellonian-Rutgers Conference in Cognitive Science we shall focus on the current state of research on cognition and action, looking more deeply into the links between the two. Main topics include, but are not restricted to, varieties of cognition and action, perception and coordination, planning and execution, impact of emotions on performance, decision making, language and performance, cognitive dimensions of moral actions, models for spatial navigation and motor control, and cognitive integration.

Aiming to provide a forum where to discuss new concepts and innovative approaches in all branches of cognitive science research, we encourage submissions of both basic and applied work.

For submission and registration guidelines as well as other information about the conference, please visit

Looking forward to seeing you in Kraków in June 2014,

Sebastian T. Kolodziejczyk & the Organising Committee


Group Knowledge Project

The EIDYN Centre for Epistemology, Mind and Normativity recently launched one more pilot project on the topic of Group Knowledge.


How do groups store, share, and generate knowledge? Moreover, can groups be intelligent agents in themselves, under which conditions, and what effects may this have on the previous set of questions? Interdisciplinary research on such philosophically motivated considerations can lead to a number of key economic, social and cultural benefits.


Group Knowledge is an EIDYN pilot project that builds on the strengths of the University of Edinburgh in the humanities and social sciencesepistemology and philosophy of mind and cognitive science. The aspiration is to bring together experts from such diverse fields as philosophy, computer science, economics, group dynamics, and public policy (amongst others) under a major research programme whose aim will be to study, design and explore the potential theoretical and technological impact of group knowledge and its underlying processes.


To read more click here.

University of Cambridge — Lecturer in the Philosophy of Psychology and Cognitive Science

Department of History and Philosophy of Science and Selwyn College

Vacancy reference: JN02015

Salary: £37,756 to £47,787 pa

Applications are invited for a permanent University Lectureship in the Philosophy of Psychology and Cognitive Science, to start on 1 September 2014 or as soon as possible thereafter. This post is part of the Trinity Scheme for Joint Lectureships and will be held in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) in conjunction with a Fellowship at Selwyn College.

Responsibilities will include contributing to all aspects of undergraduate and graduate teaching, supervising and examining, leading research in the philosophy of psychology or cognitive science, and various administrative duties for the Department and the College.

Applicants must hold a PhD (or equivalent) and have an outstanding record of excellence in teaching, research and publication in this area. The Department offers an exceptionally stimulating and supportive interdisciplinary research environment and the opportunity to develop undergraduate and graduate teaching in the post-holder’s areas of expertise.


  • Closing date: 5pm on Friday 7 March 2014
  • Longlisting: by approx 17 March 2014
  • Shortlisting: by approx 25 March 2014
  • Job talks and informal meetings: all day on 23 April 2014
  • Interviews: morning of 24 April 2014 (videoconferencing will be available if required)

More information is here:

9th Mind Network Meeting: Oxford

Wednesday 26 March 2014

The 9th Mind Network workshop will take place in the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Oxford.

The speakers are:

A full programme for the meeting, and information on how to register, is here:

The local organisers are:

  • Joshua Shepherd ()
  • Ian Phillips ()

CFP: Deductive and Mathematical Cognition: Implications for Philosophy

The Deductive and Mathematical Cognition Philosophy Conference will be held at the University of Bristol on 7th and 8th April 2014. The conference aims to investigate the implications of recent empirical developments in the study of deductive and mathematical cognition for established questions in the philosophy of mathematics and logic. We hope to provide an environment for interdisciplinary discourse between philosophers and those working within the relevant empirical disciplines. The conference will spend one day focussing on each field, the first day (April 7th) on Mathematical Cognition and Philosophy of Mathematics and the second (April 8th) on Deductive Cognition and Philosophy of Logic.


Invited Speakers:

Caterina Dutilh Novaes (Groningen)

Helen De Cruz (Oxford)

Bart van Kerkhove (Brussels)

The call for papers is open to any from a diverse range of fields, including but not limited to philosophy, logic, mathematics, psychology, cognitive science, history and anthropology. At least two spaces are reserved for early career academics and graduate student submissions.

For the first day we welcome submissions that focus on the implications of recent findings in the study of mathematical cognition for traditional issues in the philosophy of mathematics. Suggested topics include but are by no means limited to:

  • Presentations of experimental work that is of interest to philosophers of mathematics.
  • Do recent findings about the nature of mathematical cognition support certain positions in the ontology of mathematics?
    •  Do these findings support Structuralism?
    •  Do these findings support Fictionalism?
    •  To what extent are mathematical entities mind-independent?
  • What can recent findings in the study of mathematical cognition tell us about the nature of mathematical knowledge?
    • Is mathematical knowledge a priori / a posteriori?
    • How do we acquire arithmetical knowledge?
    • o        How do we acquire geometrical knowledge?
  • What role does the historical development of mathematical notation play in determining the nature of mathematical knowledge?

For the second day of the conference, we are looking for papers on a wide range of topics introducing empirical sources of information and insight to philosophical questions concerning logic. Such questions may be metaphysical, epistemological or methodological.Topics include but are by no means limited to:

  • Presentations of empirical work into the nature of deductive processes.
  • Implications of empirical work for issues in the epistemology of logic
    • Is logic innate?
    • Can we acquire knowledge of logical principles through introspection?
  • Implications of empirical work for the foundations of logic
    • What is the subject of logic?
    • Are we deductively rational? If not what are the implications for the prescriptive role of logic as a guide to correct reasoning?
  • Should we construct and assess our logics using data from the study of deductive reasoning processes?

Papers should be submitted via Easychair by 15th February 2014 in the following format.

1) A cover letter including the author’s name, university affiliation, contact information, title of paper, topic area, word count, and an abstract of no more than 250 words.

2) A paper prepared for blind review. Submissions should not exceed 4,000 words and should be suitable for a 40-minute presentation.

The registration for delegates that are not presenting a paper is £20, with a reduced fee of £10 for students.
The conference is supported by The British Society for the Philosophy of Science

Announcement: iCogS Database

iCog Network


iCog is a new network for postgraduate and early-career researchers working in the different disciplines of cognitive science: anthropology, computational intelligence, linguistics, neuroscience, philosophy and psychology. The iCog network aims to equip junior researchers with the knowledge base, skills and professional networks to ensure that progress in cognitive science continues to be made through interdisciplinary work. These aims will be achieved through conferences, training workshops and through its own international database of researchers, iCogS.


Visit for more details.


iCogS Database


The iCog network has just launched iCogS to help postgraduates and early-career researchers working in the different disciplines of cognitive science get in touch with each other, exchange knowledge, and initiate collaborations. Researchers can create a profile detailing their research interests, current research and whether they are interested in collaborating with other researchers, which disciplines they are interested in collaborating with, the topic or question they wish to investigate collaboratively, and the methodologies they wish to employ (if known). Even for those not currently seeking collaborators, having an iCogS profile is a good way to advertise your research to other researchers in the cognitive science community.


Visit to create your profile and search the iCogS database for other researchers.


The iCog network acknowledges the generous support of the Mind Association, Aristotelian Society, Analysis Trust, Guarantors of Brain, Language and Cognition (Cambridge University Press), and the Departments of Philosophy and Psychology, Faculty of Science, and the Hang Seng Centre for Cognitive Studies at the University of Sheffield.

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