Monday 14 December 2015

PERFECT 2016: False but Useful Beliefs

Project PERFECT is very proud to announce its first workshop, on False but Useful Beliefs, to be held in London on 4th and 5th of February 2016. The workshop will take place at Regent's Conferences and Event in Regent's Park (see picture below). The idea of the workshop is to explore a variety of beliefs and belief-like states that are epistemically faulty (either false or badly supported by evidence) but that also play a useful function for the agent, either biologically, psychologically, pragmatically, epistemically, or in some other way.

The workshop features three types of talks.

1. Talks by invited speakers who are leading experts in the area. 

Anandi Hattiangadi from Stockholm University will talk about radical interpretation and implicit cognition, Neil Van Leeuwen from Georgia State University will discuss agent-like stimuli in religious practice, and David Papineau from King's College London and CUNY will ask whether functional falsity refutes teleosemantics.

2. Talks by an excellent mix of early- and mid-career philosophers from all over the world, selected via a call-for-papers earlier in 2015

Jesse Summers from Duke University will talk about the benefits of rationalisation, Lubomira Radoilska from the University of Kent will ask whether false beliefs are conducive to agential success in a non-accidental way, Patrizia Pedrini from the University of Florence will discuss self-deception, David Kovacs  from Cornell University will talk about false but useful beliefs about ordinary objects, and Kate Nolfi from the University of Vermont will argue that there are epistemically faultless false beliefs.

3. Talks by project team members reporting on their progress with PERFECT. 

Ema Sullivan-Bissett (post-doc on PERFECT, working on belief) will talk about false but useful beliefs about epistemic normativity, and I (Lisa Bortolotti, PI on PERFECT) will ask whether positive illusions are epistemically innocent.

If you want to attend the conference, please register here by 15th January. Registration is heavily subsidised by the project, and at £30 (£20 for students and unemployed) it just covers lunch and refreshments over the two days of the workshop.

Hope to see many of you there!

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