Winners of the Young Epistemologist Prize 2017

The winners of the Young Epistemologist Prize 2017 are:

Christopher Kelp (KU Leuven): “Inquiry and the Transmission of Knowledge”

Miriam Schoenfield (NYU/MIT): “Permissivism and the Value of Rationality”

The papers will be presented at the Rutgers Epistemology Conference, May 5 & 6 and will be published in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. All are welcome to attend the Rutgers Epistemology Conference. Details about the conference can be found here:

CFP: 8th Annual Notre Dame/Northwestern Graduate Epistemology Conference

The 8th Annual Notre Dame/Northwestern Graduate Epistemology Conference will take place on April 28-29th, 2017, at the University of Notre Dame. This year, our keynote speaker is Peter Graham (U.C. Riverside).

The deadline for submissions is February 15, 2017. We welcome submissions in the field of analytic epistemology, broadly construed. Papers may be on any topic in epistemology. Papers should be no more than 4000 words (approx. 13 pages), excluding notes. Submissions longer than 4000 words will not be considered; please include a word count on your paper.

Papers should be prepared for blind review: include detachable cover page with paper’s title, abstract, author’s name, mailing address, email, phone number, and school affiliation; please omit any self-identifying remarks within the body of the paper. Papers should be emailed as an attached PDF to the conference organizers at

PhilEvents link:

CFP: 7th Annual Edinburgh Graduate Epistemology Conference

The 7th Annual Edinburgh Graduate Epistemology Conference will take place 19th-20th June 2017. This year’s keynote speakers will be Maria Lasonen-Aarnio (University of Michigan) and Ram Neta (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill). All graduate presentations will have respondents from faculty members at Edinburgh or a neighbouring university.

We invite graduate students to submit essays within any area of epistemology (broadly construed). Essays should be under 4000 words, anonymised for blind review, and accompanied by an abstract of no more than 250 words.

Essays should be submitted no later than Feb. 15, 2017 (23:55 GMT) through our EasyChair page here:

We would really like the conference to be representative of the graduate community and so we strongly encourage submissions from anyone working on epistemology who is a member of an under-represented group.

For more information please visit our conference page:

For further inquiries, feel free to contact Kegan Shaw (conference coordinator) at:

This conference is generously sponsored by the Eidyn Research Centre, the University of Edinburgh, the Mind Association, and is supported by the Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group.

2016 Midwest Epistemology Workshop

UPDATE 8/24: A few days remain before the reduced rate for accommodation expires (see below). Act soon!

The Tenth Annual Midwest Epistemology Workshop (MEW) will be held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison on September 30 and October 1, 2016.  Hosted by John Bengson and Mike Titelbaum, and open to everyone in the world, the workshop will feature presentations by:

Paul Boghossian (NYU, keynote)
Dana Tulodziecki (Purdue)
David Sosa (UT-Austin)
Brian Kim (Oklahoma State)
Billy Dunaway (UMSL)
Imogen Dickie (Toronto)
Avery Archer (George Washington)
Carrie Swanson (Iowa) and Margaret Atherton (UW-Milwaukee) in a panel on Epistemology and its History

Participants at large include:

David Alexander (Iowa State)
Julianne Chung (Louisville)
Sinan Dogramici (UT-Austin)
Sophie Horowitz (Rice/UMass-Amherst)
Dan Korman (Illinois-UC)
Jack Lyons (Arkansas)
Declan Smithies (Ohio State)

Schedule: MEW sessions will begin on Friday morning, September 30 and conclude in the evening on Saturday, October 1.  Saturday night will feature a special MEW tenth anniversary banquet at Cento, one of Madison’s premiere restaurants.  Prof. Boghossian will also be giving a public lecture “Should we be moral relativists?” at 5pm the afternoon of Thursday, September 29.  MEW attendees arriving early are encouraged to attend.

Registration and conference dinner: There is no cost for the conference, but attendees are required to register by e-mailing  When you register, please indicate whether you will attend the anniversary banquet.  The cost is $45 per person for faculty and $25 for students.  (This includes dinner, dessert, and wine.)  Banquet seats are limited, and will be allocated to those who reply soonest.

Accommodation: A limited number of rooms have been set aside at two local hotels for conference attendees.  The Graduate is closer to the conference venue (Helen C. White Hall), but is more expensive than the InnTowner Madison.  To reserve a room at The Graduate, call them and mention the “Midwest Epistemology Workshop”, or use this link with booking code “MEG092916”.  To reserve a room at the InnTowner, use Group Code “PHIL16”.  Reservations at either location must be made by August 28.

Financial assistance: We would very much like to encourage participation by graduate students and other philosophers not in the tenure stream.  Please contact us to discuss various ways of relieving the financial burdens of attendance, including (but not limited to) finding local students with whom you could room for the event.

Accessibility, etc.: All venues are wheelchair accessible, and a variety of diets can be accommodated.  Please e-mail with other accessibility concerns; we will do our best to find solutions.  We are also happy to work with parents on finding childcare, space for nursing, and other related needs.  Note, however, that it’s much easier for us to address these needs with ample advance noticeat least two weeks, and preferably much more than that.



Minsun Kim and Yuan Yuan: “Cross-Cultural Universality of Knowledge Attributions”

New paper by Kim and Yuan: pdf.


We selected three effects of knowledge attribution recently reported about English speakers, i.e., (1) ceteris paribus people are less willing to ascribe knowledge for true beliefs based on probabilistic evidence than for true beliefs based on perceptual evidence; (2) ceteris paribus people are less willing to ascribe knowledge for true beliefs based on apparent evidence than for true beliefs based on authentic evidence even in Gettierized scenarios; and (3) ceteris paribus people are more willing to attribute knowledge to a protagonist when she engages in harmful activities than when she engages in beneficent activities even in Gettierized scenarios. And we translated the materials used in these existing studies into Chinese and Korean and then ran the studies with participants in China and South Korea. Strikingly, all three of the effects that had been found with Western participants also emerged with participants from these other cultures. Drawing on these results, we argue that it is time for a pivot in our more meta-philosophical discussions, namely, we should start systematically theorizing about the rather extraordinary cross-cultural similarities (instead of unfounded divergences) in people’s epistemic intuitions.

CSSiP Summer School, “Rationality, Objectivity, Disagreement”

The 11th Cologne Summer School in Philosophy (CSSiP) on

“Rationality, Objectivity, Disagreement”

will take place in Cologne, July 25 through July 29, 2016. This year’s special guest will be Thomas Kelly (Princeton University). Since more than a decade Kelly promoted a number of refreshing new ideas in epistemology and consequently initiated rethinking of epistemological orthodoxy. Among his main themes are the epistemology of disagreement, the nature of epistemic evidence, and the limits of instrumental rationality within epistemology. The Summer School will focus on these and related themes in epistemology. It mainly aims at professional philosophers and graduate students.

Attendance is free, but limited to 50 participants – to be selected on the basis of motivation and qualification. Online application is possible through April 15. Please add a short letter that sketches your academic background and main motivation for participating in the Summer School. If you are interested in giving a brief presentation (approx. 20 minutes) related to Kelly’s work, please also send an abstract of no more than 1,000 words. We will inform you about the success of your application soon after the deadline.

Apply via email to:

For more information, please visit our website:

Prof. Dr. Thomas Grundmann
Philosophisches Seminar
Universität zu Köln

New empirical studies on epistemic contextualism

Epistemic contextualism is the view that the verb “know” is a context sensitive expression. As a first approximation, epistemic contextualism states that in order for us to truthfully say a person “knows” a proposition, that person must meet the standards set by our context and, critically, the standards change across contexts. The variation is thought to be theoretically important partly because it might indicate an ingredient of (the truth conditions of) “knowledge” statements beyond the traditional factors of belief, evidence, and truth.

Contextualists motivate their view based on a set of empirical claims about competent speakers’ linguistic behavior in certain situations. A famous way of illustrating the idea involves a pair of cases about a man who wants to deposit a check and is deciding whether to wait in a long line at the bank on a Friday afternoon, or come back on Saturday morning when the line would be short. But the question arises: is this bank actually open Saturday morning? The man visited this bank two Saturdays ago and it was open then, but banks do sometimes change their hours. In the “low stakes” version of the case, nothing serious hinges on whether he deposits the check before the weekend is over, and the man says, “I know that the bank is open tomorrow.” In the “high stakes” version of the case, something very serious hinges on whether he deposits the check before the weekend is over, and the man says, “I don’t know that the bank is open tomorrow.”

Contextualists claim that competent speakers will judge that the man truthfully says he “knows” in the low stakes version, and that the man truthfully says he “doesn’t know” in the high stakes version.

Do people behave as contextualists predict? Prior research on this empirical question has yielded mixed results. Taking into account methodological objections raised by contextualists,* I ran another series of studies to investigate the issue.** I found that, just as contextualists predicted, people judged that the man truthfully says he “knows” in the low stakes case, and that the man truthfully says he “doesn’t know” in the high-stakes case. Continue reading