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postdoctoral fellowships in Free Will project

School of Advanced Studies, University of Tyumen

Job category Postdoc or similar / Fixed term
AOS philosophy of science, philosophy of mind or related
AOS categories Philosophy of Mind
Philosophy of Biology
Philosophy of Cognitive Science
Philosophy of Physics
Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of Social Science
Philosophy of Law
AOC Open
Workload Full time
Vacancies 3
Location Tyumen’, Tjumen, Russia
Start date August 2017
Job description

The School of Advanced Studies, University of Tyumen, Russia, invites applications for Postdoctoral Fellowships. One to three Fellowships will be offered within the research project “Free will: implications of state-of-the-art research in natural sciences for humanities and social sciences”, notably to 1 analytic philosopher / philosopher of science / philosopher of biology / philosopher of mind; 1 neuroscientist (or philosopher of neuroscience); 1 legal theorist. After one successful year, all fellows will be eligible to apply for permanent faculty positions.

The School of Advanced Studies is an innovative project to be launched in Fall, 2017. It will bring faculty from different countries together to work in interrelated multidisciplinary projects in social sciences and the humanities, including areas related to IT and the life sciences, as well as to teach in the SAS BA and MA programs. The SAS research agenda is organized around challenging problems of contemporary scholarship in order to produce results relevant for scholarly communities globally (cf. https://sas.utmn.ru/en/research/).

The broad goal of the Free Will project is to critically investigate the concept of free will in natural science (neuroscience and physics), and to study the implications of an upgraded theory of free will for the most relevant disciplines of the social sciences and humanities. Important questions are: how to reconcile our obvious feeling of being free agents, with recent findings in natural science ? How to conceive of moral and legal responsibility / autonomy in view of a refined concept of free will ? What are some of the most important consequences and lessons humanities and social sciences can draw from an informed debate on free will ?

Description of Post-doc 1 (an analytic philosopher, e.g. philosopher of science, of mind, or related):

The goal of this post-doctoral project is to:

- critically investigate the most prominent theories of free will existing in (analytic) philosophy and neuroscience; derive, after analytic efforts, a synthetic view leading to one or a handful of powerful ‘working’ definitions of free will.

- use the latest empirical findings from neuroscience (in part generated by another sub-project within the larger project) to critically revisit these prominent theories and come up with upgraded versions (definition and theory of free will), when necessary.

The ideal candidate:

- has experience in, and strong interest for, the question of free will as analyzed in the most prominent modern theories on free will, in philosophy and neuroscience

- has strong experience in conceptual analysis of notions related to free will, consciousness, mind-body interaction; is interested in coming to clear definitions; is well aware of the prominent theories on these notions within modern (analytic) philosophy and neuroscience

- Has experience in, or strong interest for, investigating the implications of the ‘working’ definition of free will in legal philosophy, history, and possibly other disciplines in humanities and social sciences

- is creative and likes to interact with scholars from various disciplines, notably neuroscience, history, law

- has excellent command of English, notably in writing

We will also consider excellent candidates whose profile somewhat deviates from the above ideal one.

Two other post-doctoral fellows will also be hired within the project, namely:

- 1 specialist in neuroscience, neurobiology or a related discipline with experience in Libet-like experiments in neuroscience and the ability to facilitate collaborations with institutions where such experiments can be carried out, as well as interest in philosophical questions related to free will;

- 1 specialist in legal theory interested in critically investigating whether current legal systems are grounded in the theological, philosophical and ethical doctrines on human moral autonomy, or in development of a comparative case study including at least two legal systems that assume different positions on human decision making.

The SAS postdoctoral fellowships will last one academic year and will involve research and teaching at the SAS BA program. Salary will be individually determined based on the candidate’s qualifications. Fellows will also receive funds for research travel and medical insurance; relocation expenses will also be covered. All fellows will be eligible to apply for permanent faculty positions in the second round of the SAS faculty recruitment in Spring, 2018.

For more information on the SAS and the projects, please go to https://sas.utmn.ru/en/research/.

For further information on all postdoctoral positions at the SAS, please visit http://sas.utmn.ru/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/7-postdocs-for-the-web-site.pdf

For general inquiries, please contact Dr. Andrey Shcherbenok, Director of the SAS at shcherbenok@utmn.ru

For research related inquiries within the Free Will project, please contact Dr. Louis Vervoort at louisvervoort@hotmail.com

How to apply
Application type Email
Please submit your application via e-mail to sas@utmn.ru. Include a cover letter, explaining your potential contribution to the Free Will project, a full CV, and three letters of recommendation (letters should be submitted to the same e-mail address, either directly by your recommenders, or through an appropriate service such as Interfolio). Review of applications begins immediately and continues until the positions are filled; preference will be given to those received by May 31, 2017.
Email to apply
Deadline for full consideration: May 31, 2017, 12:00am +05:00
Hard deadline No deadline specified (applications considered on an ongoing basis)
Web address for more information https://sas.utmn.ru/en/research/
Contact name Andrey Shcherbenok
Contact email
Contact phone +79853336787
Time created April 19, 2017, 2:58pm EST
Scheduled expiry date November 5, 2017, 12:30pm +05:00
Last updated April 19, 2017, 2:58pm EST
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