CFP: Discovery in the Social Sciences

WORKSHOP: Discovery in the social sciences: Towards an empirically-informed philosophy of social science

University of Leuven, Belgium, March 22-23, 2011

Submission deadline for abstracts: 31 December, 2010.
Notification of acceptance: January 15, 2011.

Keynote speakers
Alison Wylie (University of Washington)
Jack Vromen (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

Call for papers:
The aim of this workshop is to bring together scholars who are working in the philosophy of the social sciences, especially those interested in scientific practice. The theme is discovery in the social sciences.

We invite submissions of extended abstracts (about 1000 words), and we are especially eager to hear from young researchers, including graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, tenure-track professors and other recent PhDs, working in the philosophy of the social sciences or related fields. We are interested in both case studies that examine specific instances of discovery in social sciences, and in more theoretical or methodological papers that are informed by scientific practice. We take ‘discovery’ in a broad sense, meaning discovery of empirical phenomena, theories and laws. ‘Social sciences’ refers to a broad range of disciplines, including (but not limited to) economics, anthropology, history, archaeology, psychology (including neuroscience), linguistics, and sociology.

Possible topics (*NOT an exhaustive list*) include:
– What is specific to discoveries in the social sciences?
– What is the epistemic role of artefacts in discovery, for example in neuroscientific research?
– Can we discern patterns in discovery in the social sciences?
– The discovery of laws in social sciences.
– Case-studies of discovery in specific social sciences.
– Creativity in social scientific practice.

Please send your abstract, preferably as pdf or rtf to Helen De Cruz, using the following e-mail address @ (remove spaces) by December 31 2010. Please also indicate your position (e.g., graduate student, postdoc, assistant professor).

Scientific committee: Helen De Cruz (University of Leuven), Eric Schliesser (Ghent University), Farah Focquaert (Ghent University), Raymond Corbey (University of Leiden and Tilburg University).

This workshop is supported by funding from the University of Leuven and Ghent University.