A Celebration of 65 Years


Bravo, Barry

Friends of UB faculty member Barry Smith gathered on June 5 for a surprise reception honoring the SUNY Distinguished Professor on his 65th birthday. Smith was presented with a Festschrift volume, "Barry Smith: an sich."  Photos: Meredith Forrest Kulwicki

Published June 6, 2017


UB Philosophy Alum, Stephanie Rivera Berruz, PhD (2014), is a winner of a 2017 Career Enhancement Fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. Learn more in the DailyNous.

The Department of Philosophy is pelased to announce Ariane Nomikos has been selected as an award winner through 2017's Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Awards competition. The university community will honor Nomikos and her fellow award recipients at UB's 13th Annual Celebration of Student Academic Excellence ceremony on Thursday, April 20, and at the Excellence in Teaching awards luncheon on Friday, April 21.

One of our most successful recent PhD graduates is William Duncan, who has been appointed Associate Director of the Clinical Data Network at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, the first dedicated medical facility for cancer treatment and research in the United States.

See the latest edition of the Noûsletter. Alumni are invited to send updates to us for inclusion in the next edition. Contact John Beverley, Managing Editor, Noûsletter.

David Braun named Director of Graduate Studies.
Maureen Donnelly named Director of Undergraduate Studies.

A festschrift honoring the work of Barry Smith is being published by Palgrave-McMillan. The collection of essays, entitled the The Theory and Practice of Ontology, provides close examination of ontology and the work of Professor Smith, one of the most prolific philosophers of the modern day.
Typically, philosophers don’t have a role in policy making, but this is a great opportunity to do something that is policy relevant and to be actively involved with making people’s lives better.

Justin Donhauser's paper “Invisible Disagreement: An Inverted Qualia Argument for Realism” has been accepted by Phil Studies. His dissertation “A Philosophy of Theoretical Ecology for Environmental Policy” was defended in 2015 under the supervision of Ken Shockley and Neil Williams.

The American Journal of Bioethics has accepted Peter Koch’s article "Analysis from a Fourth Perspective: Professionalism." Koch argues that besides legal, moral, and personal perspectives, decisions made by medical professionals ought to be analyzed in terms of professionalism. His paper is a response to an earlier paper by Kathleen Hodgkinson and Daryl Pullman entitled “The Curious Case of the De-ICD. Negotiating the Dynamics of Autonomy and Paternalism in Complex Clinical Relationships. The journal will publish a Pullman and Hodgkinson response to Koch’s article. So the secondary literature on Peter Koch is growing. This is the sixth article that Koch has published in the field of bioethics.
Robert Kelly's paper "Remembering past lives" is one of the chapters in a volume entitled Advances in Religion, Cognitive Science, and Experimental Philosophy. Bob's co-authors are Claire White and Shaun Nichols.
It has been a good week for David Limbaugh. He had a paper accepted by Ethics, Medicine and Public Health and then won the Evangelical Philosophical Society's prize for the Best Graduate Student Paper at their Mid West regional conference.  
The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce the winners of the Romanell Award for the best graduate student work in the tradition of naturalism, and, the Thomas Perry Dissertation Prize for the best dissertation completed in the previous academic year.
The University at Buffalo Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Rasmus Rosenberg Larsen has won two Danish Dissertation Fellowships. Larsen's research interests include Phenomenology, German Idealism, S. Kierkegaard and E. Levinas. The two foundations are Oticon Fonden and Knud Højgaards Fond.
Philosophical Studies has been ranked as one of the seven best general philosophy journals. 

Noteworthy Links

The APA is pleased to announce that William Rapaport (University at Buffalo) has been selected by the APA committee on philosophy and computers as the winner of the 2015 Barwise Prize! Rapaport will receive his award at the 2016 Eastern Division meeting in Washington, DC. Learn more about this prize by visiting the Barwise Prize page.
This Fall, the Philosophy Department hosted the Welcome Reception and Annual Awards Presentation, September 16, at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site in Buffalo, NY.
Barry Smith has received a grant from the NIH (National Institute for General Medical Science) for work on the Protein Ontology (PRO). The grant provides $321K total direct costs over four years to support work by Barry and his collaborators Alex Diehl and Alan Ruttenberg on the logic of the PRO and on its interrelations with the Basic Formal Ontology (BFO) and with BFO-based ontologies in areas such as drug discovery, neurology and disease.
Book reviewers praise the recent publication, Debating Race, Ethnicity and Identity: Jorge Gracia and His Critics. The book includes exchanges between Gracia and some well-known critics such as Linda M. Alcoff, K. Anthony Appiah, Richard J. Bernstein, Lawrence Blum, Robert Gooding-Williams, Eduardo Mendieta, and Lucius T. Outlaw Jr.
In the era of “big data,” science is increasingly information driven, and the potential for computers to store, manage, and integrate massive amounts of data has given rise to such new disciplinary fields as biomedical informatics. Applied ontology offers a strategy for the organization of scientific information in computer-tractable form, drawing on concepts not only from computer and information science but also from linguistics, logic, and philosophy. This book provides an introduction to the field of applied ontology that is of particular relevance to biomedicine, covering theoretical components of ontologies, best practices for ontology design, and examples of biomedical ontologies in use.
The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Brendan Cline has had another article accepted for publication. Cline's paper, "Moral Explanations: Thick and Thin", has been accepted by the Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy.
The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that John Beverly just had his Spring 2015 Qualifying Paper "The Ties that Undermine" accepted in the journal Bioethics. That journal is one of the elite journals in medical ethics.
Founded in 1888 by Edward C. Hegeler, The Monist is one of the world’s oldest and most important journals in philosophy. The Monist publishes quarterly thematic issues on particular philosophical topics which are edited by leading philosophers in the corresponding fields. As a result, each issue is a collected anthology of continuing interest. The Monist is edited by Barry Smith.
The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Rasmus Larsen has obtained another publication. His article "The Posited Self: The Non-Theistic Foundation in Kierkegaard’s Writings” was accepted for publication in the 2015 (August)  Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook.
The UB Department of Philosophy has performed better than ever before in the Philosophical Gourmet Report for the current academic year. The rankings of graduate programs, which are primarily based on the quality of faculty, represent reputational surveys distributed throughout the English-speaking world and Continental Europe.
The University at Buffalo Department of Philosophy is very pleased to announce that Carolyn Korsmeyer's article on "Touch and the Experience of the Genuine", as it appeared in the British Journal of Aesthetics 52: 365-377, was picked as one of the five best papers published on the philosophy of art for the year, 2012.
The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Professor Barry Smith has been elected as a fellow to the American College of Medical Informatics. He was inducted into the American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI) on Sunday, November 16 at ceremonies during AMIA 2014 Annual Symposium on Biomedical and Health Informatics, where 2,500 informatics professionals gathered for five days of workshops, scientific sessions, and educational panels on topics including translational bioinformatics, clinical research informatics, public health informatics, consumer informatics and applied clinical  and operational informatics.
The University at Buffalo Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Matt LaVine has published an article in Synthese entitled   "Prior's Thank-Goodness Argument Reconsidered."  Synthese is a highly ranked, selective journal, rejecting 90% of its submissions.
It seems that every few months the department is announcing a Brendan Cline publication and each time the paper is published in a more elite journal. His latest publication is in Philosophical Studies. Phil Studies is widely recognized as one of the top seven philosophy journals.  Brendan’s paper is entitled "Against Deliberative Indispensability as an Independent Guide to What There Is.”  
Professor John Kearns was recognized by the Philosophy Department at the Fall 2014 welcoming reception and annual awards presentation for his fifty years of dedicated service and scholarship. Kearns was also among those recognized by UB President Satish Tripathi at the 11th Annual Celebration of Faculty and Staff Academic Excellence in October at Slee Hall on UB's North Campus.
Awards were presented at the Annual Fall 2014 Welcome Party, September 11. The special event featured a cruise along the Erie Canal that included being lowered and raised through the Lockport Locks, giving a sense of the region's history.
Mark Spencer, a recent UB Philosophy graduate, has won the American Catholic Philosophical Association's (ACPA) Young Scholar Award. This award is given to the scholar under the age of thirty-five who is judged to have written the best paper among those accepted for presentation at the ACPA meeting and publication in the proceedings. Mark will be presented with the award at a special ceremony during the ACPA's annual conference banquet in Washington DC next week. The other award to be given out during the banquet is the Aquinas medal for lifetime achievement. Professor Jorge Gracia won that prestigious prize a few years ago.
The Department of Philosophy is delighted to announce that Neil Otte won the Kane-Dennett prize for his submission to the Free Will Conference sponsored by the University of Michigan - Flint campus's Center for Cognition and Neuroethics.

The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce that Justin Donhauser's paper "On How Theoretical Analyses in Ecology Can Enable Environmental Problem-solving"​ has been accepted for publication in the journal "Ethics & the Environment."

Barry Smith, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Julian Park Chair, Department of Philosophy, is the Keynote Speaker for the ASME's 34th Computers and Information in Engineering (CIE) Conference, to be held in Buffalo, NY, August 17-24. The ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) helps the global engineering community develop solutions to real world challenges.
Selja Seppälä, postdoctoral researcher in UB's Philosophy Department, has received an award from the Swiss National Science Foundation for her work on the ontology of definitions.

The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce the recent achievements of our alums - Berit Brogaard, Daniel Novotny, and Matt Lavine.

“In the Unjust Meantime: A Conference in Honor of Alison M. Jaggar” celebrates the work of UB Philosophy alum, Alison Jaggar, UC-B College Professor of Distinction in Philosophy and Women and Gender Studies.
E. Bruce Pitman, Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, announced the appontment of Susan Smith as director of the Social Sciences interdisciplinary program (IDP) in the college, effective June 1. IDP offers undergraduate majors designed for students wishing to pursue a focused inquiry into areas of contemporary public interest.