Peter Brössel — PI

Ernennung_TK_Brössel-6.jpgPeter’s research interests are in epistemology, philosophy of science and philosophy of cognition. In epistemology, his research centers on theories of rational reasoning and perception, and the relationship between reasons, epistemic rationality, and epistemic normativity. He also has a research focus on social epistemology, especially, peer disagreement and testimony. Peter’s research in the philosophy of science focuses on theories of confirmation, causation and explanatory and systematic power. In the philosophy of cognition, he is interested in theories of representation and, especially, the interface between perception, language, and belief. One particular aim of his research in cognitive science is to bring together traditional topics in epistemology and philosophy of science with recent approaches in cognitive science. (Here you can find more information about him.)

Insa Lawler — Post-Doc


Insa’s research interests are in epistemology, the philosophy of science, and formal semantics. In epistemology, she focuses on understanding and knowledge-wh. In the philosophy of science, she works on explanations, idealized models, simulations, and statistical tools, but she also has a growing interest in the philosophy of cognitive science. In formal semantics, she is concerned with multi-modal semantic content as well as non-declarative sentences. (Here you can find more information about her.


Filippo Vindrola — PhD-Student

Processed with VSCO with  presetFilippo’s research interests are in epistemology, philosophy of science and cognitive science. In epistemology, his current research focuses on normativity, rationality, and rational relations between perceptual experience and belief. In philosophy of science, he is interested in explanation and empirically-informed models of perception and cognition. His thesis is supervised by Peter Brössel (Bochum) and Edouard Machery (Pittsburgh).


External Members

Anna-Maria Asunta Eder (Cologne)

IMG_0206Anna-Maria’s research focuses on topics in epistemology, the philosophy of science, and metaphilosophy. In epistemology she works at the intersection of social, traditional, and formal epistemology. Her research encompasses epistemic disagreement, epistemic normativity, theories of justification, of evidential support, and of higher-order evidence, and the relationship between logic and reasoning. In the philosophy of science her research centers on the aims of inquiry, the relationship between confirmation and rational belief, and between explanation and understanding. In metaphilosophy she is mainly interested in methods of conceptual clarification and conceptual engineering, and on the role of formal methods in philosophy. (Here you can find more information about her.)

Peter Gärdenfors (Lund) — Mercator Research Fellow and Visiting Professor of the Group

Peter Gärdenfors has written groundbreaking work in such diverse areas as artificial intelligence, biology, cognitive science, economics, epistemology (and philosophy of science), and linguistics. Especially noteworthy are his contributions to AGM-belief revision (the ‘G’ in ‘AGM’ stands for ‘Gärdenfors’), decision theory, concept formation, semantics, evolution of cognition. He is certainly one of the most important cognitive scientist working on concept formation and conceptual thought. His books The Geometry of Meaning: Semantics Based on Conceptual Spaces and Conceptual Spaces: The Geometry of Thought are milestones in cognitive science and philosophy and they are central to the entire project. Peter Gärdenfors will visit the group as a Mercator Fellow and visiting professor every year. (Here one can find more information about him.)

Nina Poth (Edinburgh)


Nina’s research interests lie at the intersection between the philosophy of mind and language and the philosophy of cognitive science. In her PhD project, she focuses on a computational explanation of concept learning and an answer to Fodor’s (1975, 2008) challenge. Her research builds on a critical assessment of generative probabilistic models (e.g. Lake et al., 2015) and non-symbolic cognitive architectures (e.g. Gärdenfors, 2000). Her thesis is supervised by Mark Sprevak and Alistair Isaac at the School of Philosophy, Psychology, and Language Sciences in Edinburgh and by Peter Brössel at the Ruhr-University Bochum. (Here you can find more information about her.)

Former Members and Recurrent Visitors

Thomas Raleigh (United Arab Emirates University)

FullSizeRender(1)Thomas’s research is primarily in Epistemology and Philosophy of Mind, though he also has active research interests in Early Analytic Philosophy (Wittgenstein & Russell) and in Metaphysics. In Epistemology, his current research is focused on rational norms for belief, on evidence and higher-order evidence, on disagreement and on suspending judgement. In Philosophy of Mind, he is interested in perceptual experience, phenomenal properties and concepts, and in the nature of mental representation. One central question for his work then, which straddles epistemology and philosophy of mind, is how the phenomenal character of experience can justify or rationalise our judgements and beliefs. (You can download some of his research here and here.)