Sandra D. Mitchell, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh, 1017 Cathedral of Learning, Pittsburgh PA 15260
My main interests are in epistemological and metaphysical issues in the philosophy of science. Currently, I am working on a project "Taking Complexity Seriously" that presents both philosophical arguments for and concrete examples of the integrative pluralism that I take to be the best model of contemporary science. In this pursuit I am investigating the strategies found in biological sciences for integrating theories and explanations at different levels of analysis and organization. In particular I am looking at two areas in detail; explanations of insect social behavior and ecosystem determinants of biological diversity. The aim is to give a detailed account of both the diversity of integrative strategies in the biological sciences and the emergent patterns that may provide guidance and insight into what works when it does, and the hazards that obstruct the way.
Selected recent publications:
SFI-Social Insect Page