Research

SAS research program seeks to contribute to the discussion about the fundamental problems that emerge at the intersections of humanities, social sciences, and sciences (primarily biology and computer science). Unlike traditional universities, SAS replaces disciplinary departments with interdisciplinary research teams working on projects that integrate approaches and perspectives from different disciplines.

The Rationale for Interdisciplinary Research

All across the world, an increasing number of research institutions are opting to promote and practice interdisciplinary research. This is the result of a global trend in academia that recognizes the need for a type of research that can bring together different disciplines, break disciplinary boundaries, and integrate findings into broad syntheses.

Traditionally, and especially in the scientific paradigms of the twentieth century, research has been done within the scope of a single discipline. Specific aspects of the world—such as its past, its economic relations, or its biological phenomena—are typically isolated and then investigated by respective disciplines, such as history, economics, or biology. Disciplines are usually characterized by their specific area of inquiry and a common set of tools for research, such as concepts, theories, methods, techniques, and sometimes even languages (e.g., mathematics). The importance of disciplinary tools is reflected by the fact that a commitment to disciplinary standards ensures that specific research is conducted scientifically, i.e., in accordance with the methodologies and principles of an established scientific practice. Those tools are used by disciplines to discipline the world into their own boundaries.

Although disciplinary approaches have incredible merits and produce outstanding results, they also have drawbacks and limitations. For one thing, a disciplinary approach is typically sensitive only to those aspects of a phenomenon that can be handled and modeled by the tools of that discipline. Consequently, a disciplinary approach may end up overlooking some crucial aspects of certain investigated phenomena, only because those aspects fall outside the scope of the methodological tools of that discipline. We often face problems—global pandemics, climate change, the social implications of biomedicine, or the economic consequences of technoscientific advance—that are so complex and multifaceted that a single discipline alone does not have the means to provide a satisfactory solution.

Moreover, disciplinary approaches encourage a mode of knowledge production that is fragmented and compartmentalized. A rigid division of research into independent disciplinary bundles produces a lack of communication between different researchers and different disciplines. As a result, valuable connections across different areas of knowledge often get lost or overlooked, which is detrimental to both the applied research dealing with real world problems and basic research aiming at the deeper understanding of the complexity of the world.

Recognizing that the problems of the twenty-first century require complex solutions, at SAS we hope to produce research that will actively integrate perspectives and approaches from across the disciplines.

Values of Interdisciplinary
Research at SAS

When a broad and complex problem falls outside the scope of a single discipline, researchers from different disciplines need knowledge and resources that come from outside their discipline. Interdisciplinary approaches integrate information, concepts, theories, and methods that come from two or more disciplines. As a result, what is intractable from the perspective of a single discipline becomes the subject of integrated analysis and collaborations between researchers with complementary skills.

Although interdisciplinary research goes beyond the boundaries of the single disciplines, disciplinarity and interdisciplinarity should not be seen as opposites. On the contrary, interdisciplinary studies can be beneficial for the single disciplines. In fact, the direct access to information, theories, and methodologies of other disciplines can be insightful and even transformational for the methods of a discipline involved in interdisciplinary research. Foundational research – research that investigates and questions the very axioms, basic assumptions, basic tools of a discipline – is almost by nature interdisciplinary: when leaving the strict borders of a discipline to change it, one necessarily moves onto the territory of another discipline. This is the reason why some of the most ground-breaking research is interdisciplinary: in one meaningful sense, scientific creativity can be defined as “thinking-out-of-the-disciplinary-box.”

The practice of interdisciplinary research generates new intellectual territories that are created by the merging of different traditions coming together. The integration of different voices brings to the fore entirely new problems that were never considered before. A key advantage of interdisciplinary research is that it may create new, emerging fields, where few people have been before, and where creativity can be gratified more easily. Newly emerged interdisciplinary fields such as biophysics, neuropsychology, quantum computation, cognitive science, neurosociology, econophysics can become some of the most thriving fields in their original discipline or be considered genuinely new disciplines.

Current Research Projects

About Project

We live in a time of crisis, at once ecological, political, conceptual, and imaginative. While global technocrats concentrate on limited aspects of the crisis taken in isolation and pursue managerial approaches to mitigate the current state of affairs, politicians disregard the advice of the scientific community  (Folke et. al. 2021) and keep disagreeing on the measures to take (Glasgow Climate Change conference). With the notion of the Anthropocene entering into everyday parlance, our research project tackles the current paralysis by fostering the imaginative and conceptual tools necessary to address the interrelated multiplicity of natural, social, political, and aesthetic aspects characterizing the contemporary crisis.

Our project is defined by a commitment to the futures to come. To anticipate the future is to await and make room for the polymorphous social, political, and ecological life lying ahead of us. By pursuing systemic stability, managerial rationality forcefully reduces the spectrum of anticipation and undermines the valorization of the new. Contrary to common-sense reductionism, we want to embrace the notion of crisis in its productive ambivalence as a window of opportunity for radical change. According to the etymological meaning of the word, “crisis” refers to a choice, a decision. System theory and philosophy also support the idea that crises are singular states entailing a bifurcation of possible outcomes. In this sense, we look at the current crisis not only as a global catastrophe, but also as the possible inception of something radically new.

What distinguishes our research project is a methodology based on dialectical ways of abstraction. We approach this state of total crisis holistically and dialectically, meaning that we consider the subject of our analysis not as a finite, static thing but as developing processes. According to the dialectical method, the main factors that determine change lie within a system. This aspect is also related to identifying the future within the present in the form of positive as well as negative potentialities. Following Bertell Ollman (2003), we consider extension, level of generalization, and vantage point as the key elements of our method of abstraction. “Extension” refers to setting the limits of the phenomena to be analyzed in space and time. “Level of generalization” concerns the analyses of particulars. Its purpose is to identify not only the apparent objective similarities between individual elements (mere generalizations) but to treat the whole to which the particular under analysis belongs. In other words, it is related to identifying the general in the particular – the law that explains the unity in identity or the cell/unit that is constitutive of the whole, the analysis of which reveals the totality of the essential attributes of the whole. Finally, “perspective” (or “vantage point”) refers to the place within the relationship from which to view, think, and piece together the other components of the relationship itself; this refers not only to the subject’s specific standpoint, but also signifies how the particular phenomenon under scrutiny is related to other phenomena and its position within the hierarchy of objective phenomena. Thus, on the one hand it concerns the horizontal relationship between phenomena, while on the other hand it concerns their vertical or hierarchical relationship. Meanwhile, the combination of the aforementioned three elements also functions as a vantage point for analysis and comprehension of  the larger system to which the relationship belongs and is constituent of. Our project thus aims at mobilizing a dialectical imagination that can overcome the limitations of conventional totalizing pictures and localized, symptomatic representations. We seek to explore viable ways to conceptualize, model, and visualize relationality, multi-scale phenomena, and system dynamics. In short, the purpose of our project is to imagine the Anthropocene in its becoming.

Our primary disciplinary affiliations are  philosophy (Siyaves Azeri),  film and media studies (Peter Lešnik), and ecology (Liz Pásztor).  We welcome academic researchers (including artists and moving image makers) who would like to work on the project based on shared principles.

Research Team

film and media studies
philosophy

About Project

The “problem of free will” (What is free will ? Do we really have free will ?) is a classic of philosophy; a staggering number of “great minds” have expressed their opinion on this topic, virtually from all disciplines, including Aristotle, Aquinas, Hume, Kant, Spinoza, Tolstoy, and Einstein. While philosophy was the mother discipline from which the topic sprang, in recent times several other disciplines have joined the debate, in particular neuroscience, cognitive science, psychology, computer science and physics. Both in professional and broad-public texts the link between free will, consciousness and (in)determinism is often immediately made. For instance, the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy starts its entry on free will thus1: “Most of us are certain that we have free will, though what exactly this amounts to is much less certain. According to David Hume, the question of the nature of free will is ‘the most contentious question of metaphysics.’ If this is correct, then figuring out what free will is will be no small task indeed. Minimally, to say that an agent has free will is to say that the agent has the capacity to choose his or her course of action. But animals seem to satisfy this criterion, and we typically think that only persons, and not animals, have free will. […] This article considers why we should care about free will and how freedom of will relates to freedom of action. It canvasses a number of the dominant accounts of what the will is, and then explores the persistent question of the relationship between free will and causal determinism […].” The typical human capacity referred to in this passage, not shared by animals, is usually considered to be consciousness or (other) cognitive capacities.

In recent years, a strong impetus has been given to the theoretical philosophical research by experimental advances in neurobiology, and by an increasing interest in humanoid functions and capacities that could be realized by robots, in general systems steered by artificial intelligence (AI). For instance, in 2008 neuroscientists have reported, based on the measurement of brain activity by fMRI, that ‘free’ choices of test persons (namely the choice to lift their left or right hand) could be predicted up to 10 seconds (!) before the test person consciously made the decision to pick one or the other hand2. To many researchers, notably neurobiologists, scientific results as these put free will in question. As another example among the many, in 2017 cognitive neuroscientists published an article in Science entitled “What is consciousness, and could machines have it?”3 – an example of the exponentially rising interest in machine-based forms of consciousness. In physics too, the question of free will has been discussed in 2018 and linked to one of the key problems of physics, i.e. the unification of quantum mechanics and relativity theory – namely by Nobel laureate Gerard ‘t Hooft4.

In this project, we start from the assumption that there is a clear case for studying free will and its link with consciousness and (in)determinism by a resolutely interdisciplinary approach. In particular, we intend to scrutinize the topic from the angle of philosophy, computer science / IT, economics, neurobiology and physics. Some of the topics and questions we are interested in  

  • What is the scientific basis of free will and consciousness? What are interesting philosophical issues discussed in the contemporary literature? What lessons can be learned from philosophy and natural science for the formal and social sciences? And v.v.?
  • Artificial consciousness: what are the prospects for emulating consciousness (and free will) in AI-systems and robots? Is this even conceivable, and if yes, under which conditions? How could neuroscience inform this research? How can philosophy (of science, of mind) inform this research? Which approaches and tools from IT and computer science are relevant in this research?
  • Compatibility issue: Are free will and determinism compatible? Are free will and (quantum) indeterminism compatible? Explore the link with the Einstein-Bohr debate on the ultimate deterministic or indeterministic (= probabilistic) nature of physical reality. Can this topic meaningfully be linked to the unification program in physics? 
  • Distinguishing the various types of consciousness (e.g. rational consciousness [our emphasis until now], subjective or experiential consciousness, unconsciousness,…). Link between consciousness and cognition. How do people think? How to upgrade AI systems in order to approach (enhanced) human cognition?
  • Is retrocausality a metaphysical and/or a physical possibility? If so, how would it affect the notion of free agency and deliberation? Is quantum mechanics (especially the superdeterminism interpretation) compatible with retrocausality?
  • Human-AI interactions: ethical concerns, trust in AI, AI-based decision-making (e.g., personnel management including employment and dismissals)

1 Cf. internet website https://www.iep.utm.edu/freewill/, retrieved 14.10.2019.

2 Chun Siong Soon et al., Unconscious determinants of free decisions in the human brain, Nature Neuroscience 11, 543 - 545 (2008)

3 Stanislas Dehaene et. al, What is consciousness, and could machines have it?, Science 27, Vol. 358, Issue 6362, pp. 486-492 (2017).

4 Gerard ‘t Hooft, Free Will in the Theory of Everything, arXiv:1709.02874 [quant-ph] (2018), cf. https://arxiv.org/abs/1709.02874

Research Team

philosophy, physics

Past Research Projects

About Project

What are the social and individual implications of the manipulation of human natural characteristics and abilities related to sensory perception? The construct of society is determined by what members of that society perceive and how they interact in both competitive and cooperative manners. While nature and evolution selected a certain range of capabilities that imposed limits to the human capacity to perceive and perform, culture and technology have modified such abilities and changed the way we understand and interact with the environment.

Sensory perception evolved biologically as a network of neuro-mechanisms ensuring the survival and reproductive success of Homo sapiens. The sensitivity of the sensory systems was selected to favor the range of interactions that humans could physiologically respond to through autonomic and cognitive reactions. The evolution of advanced cognitive capabilities and the consequential evolution of culture propelled humanity into an area of sensory perception beyond that of those derived through genetic evolution. Humanity began hence to seek ways to manipulate sensory perception through conscious intervention in all steps along the operational chain of sensing—from stimuli to reception to neural processing, to obtain desired behavioral outputs.

The continuous pattern of such interventions through history suggests an innate desire to expand the boundaries of human neurobiology. By examining the history of modification, enhancement, compensation, and control of human physiological and psychological capabilities, this project will evaluate the impact of these manipulations so that causal relationships and predictive models can be conceptualized and studied.

Research Team

anthropology, GIS
history
Corinne Doria (external member)

Project Design Sessions

Faculty Search: Interdisciplinary Research Project Design Session. Faculty candidates from 12 countries. 10-13 December 2021. Live broadcast.

SAS’s research program is based upon interdisciplinary research projects that are integrated into global academic networks; the project groups replace traditional disciplinary departments and ensure intensive communication among faculty members within and across disciplines.

This year’s project design session introduces a new format that includes both job candidates and current SAS faculty. While in previous years, the PDS was focused on the formation of new research projects, this year the candidates will also have the opportunity to join existing projects.

The first day will be dedicated to current research projects, while days 2 and 3 will be dedicated to the formation of new groups and, possibly, the transformation of current projects with the addition of new researchers.

Join our live broadcasts at the end of each day, when the current and proposed research projects will be interrogated by a panel of experts.

December 10, Friday

  • 9:30–10:00 — Opening Ceremony — Live broadcast. Click to watch
  • 10:00–11:00 — Presentations about the Current Research Project — Live broadcast. Click to watch
  • 11:20–16:00 — Group Work
  • 16:00–18:00 — Plenary Session: Exploring How the Addition of New Researchers Would Impact Current Research Project

December 11, Saturday

  • 10:15–15:00 — Group Work
  • 15:00–18:00 — Plenary Session: Formation of New Research Projects — Live broadcast. Click to watch

December 12, Sunday

  • 11:30–16:00 — Group Work
  • 16:00–19:00 — Plenary Session: Formation of New Research Projects — Live broadcast. Click to watch

Expert Board

Alexander Didenko
Institute of Business Studies (IBS-Moscow, RANEPA)
Andrew Wachtel
Compass College, Bishkek
Olga Bychkova
European University at Saint Petersburg

Faculty Candidates

Aleksander Sedzielarz
Country: USA
PhD: Comparative Literature, University of Minnesota (USA)
Research Interests: Comparative Literature; Film and Media Studies; Cultural Studies
Carlos Yebra López
Country: Spain
PhD: Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Literatures, New York University (USA)
Research Interests: Literature; Сulture; Сritical Theory; Philosophy; Digital Humanities
Country: Canada
PhD: Cultural Studies, Trent University (Canada)
Research Interests: Sociological Theory; Psychoanalysis; Anarchist Theory; Continental Philosophy
Enrique Uribe-Jongbloed
Country: Netherlands / Colombia
PhD: Film and Television Studies, Aberystwyth University (UK)
Research Interests: Media and Identity; Multilingualism; Global Media Studies; Qualitative Research; Political Economy of Communication; Cultural Translation; Adaptation; Videogames; Comics; Digital Transformation
Country: Hungary
PhD: Biology, Eötvös Loránd University (Hungary)
Research Interests: Evolutionary Ecology; Coexistence Theory; Speciation; Evolutionary Principles; Life-history Optimization; Adaptive Dynamics; Description of Complex Dynamic Systems; Population Regulation; Evolutionary Adaptations
Ksenia Gerasimova
Country: Russia
PhD: Land Economy, Cambridge University (UK)
Research Interests: Economics; History of Science; Technology and Sociology
Manca Bajec
Country: Slovenia
PhD: Sculpture, Royal College of Art (UK)
Research Interests: Art; Visual Culture; Art; Monuments; Memorialization; Europeanization
Country: Croatia
PhD: Social Sciences, University of Zagreb (Croatia)
Research Interests: Higher Education; Teaching and Learning; Academic Profession; Teaching Competencies; Well-being in Academia; Intercultural and European Education
Mazen Diwani
Country: Syria
PhD: Models for Economics and Finance, Sapienza University of Rome (Italy)
Research Interests: Development Economics, Economics and Finance, Bank Profitability
Country: Slovenia
PhD: Film and Media Studies, University of Pennsylvania (USA)
Research Interests: World Cinema; Adaptation Studies; Documentary Cinema; Media Archaeology; Media Studies; Visual Cultures; Ecocriticism; Trauma Studies; Critical Theory
Sang-Keun Yoo
Country: South Korea
PhD: English, University of California (USA)
Research Interests: 20th Century American Literature; Asian American and Asian Literature; Visual Media
Scott Anthony
Country: UK
PhD: History, University of Oxford (UK)
Research Interests: Public Relations, Propaganda, and Cultural Diplomacy; The Role of Artists and Intellectuals in Public Life; Public History, History, and Heritage as a Tool of Activists, Campaigners, and Policy Makers
Country: Bulgaria
PhD: Comparative Gender Studies, Central European University (Hungary)
Research Interests: Philosophy; History of Philosophy; History of Ideas; Gender and Sexuality Studies; Plato and Platonism; Neoplatonism/Late Antique Philosophy; Ancient Cosmology; Nag Hammadi and Gnosticism; New Realism; Embodiment and Disembodiment; Autonomism
Tyler Dupont
Country: USA
PhD: Sociology, State University of New York at Buffalo (USA)
Research Interests: Subcultures; Deviance; Sport

Faculty Search: Interdisciplinary Research Project Design Session. Faculty candidates from 15 countries. 12–16 March 2020. Online broadcast.

SAS research program relies on interdisciplinary research teams integrated into global academic networks; these teams replace traditional disciplinary departments and ensure intensive communication among faculty members within and across disciplines.

Research teams are formed through an innovative faculty search procedure thereby finalists get together in Tyumen for a project design session where they self-organize into interdisciplinary teams and propose research projects. Core members of the best project teams receive full-time faculty positions at SAS.

This year SAS is particularly interested in the following research directions, within which more concrete team projects will be designed:

  • The challenges posed by AI decision-making, machine creativity and technological objects becoming social subjects.
  • Ethical and societal implications of genome technologies and neuroscience, such as genetic engineering, resurrection of extinct species, and direct manipulation of cognition and emotion in the brain, including in new media.
  • Multilevel evolution and the possibilities and limitations of applying evolutionary theory and ‘the logic of chance’ to social, economic, and cultural structures in their historical development.
  • Arctic cities in the changing environment, ‘glocalization’ of the impact of environmental and technological changes on the economy, everyday urban experience, culture and society.
  • Implications of changing economic dominance of Global South vs. Global North, East vs. West, etc. for the economic, technological, social and national divides in the multipolar world. The possibilities of the creation of communities across these divides, including by means of storytelling and visual media.

Tune in to watch a live broadcast of the plenary discussions where their ideas will be tested on 13, 14, 15 March 2020, at 10:00am (GMT).

Online broadcast with synchronous Russian translation here.

Expert Board

philosophy of science
Alexei Grinbaum, Institut de Recherche sur les Lois Fondamentales de l'Univers, CEA/Saclay
economics
Barbara Igel, Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO
interdisciplinary studies
Machiel Keestra, Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Amsterdam
computer science
Sasha Shapoval, National Research University Higher School of Economics
sociology
Victor Vakhshtain, The Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences

Faculty Candidates

computer science and engineering
science, technology and society
higher education
biology and neuroscience
film and media studies
law, political science
computer science
biology, physics
anthropology
Jonatan Kurzwelly
biology
computer science
philosopy and cognitive science
history
geography, environmental studies
philosophy
sociology
Safi Shams
higher education
economics
psychology
philosophy
sociology
history and philosophy of science and technology

Faculty Search: Interdisciplinary Research Project Design Session. Faculty candidates from 14 countries. 7–11 March, 2019. Online broadcast.

SAS research program relies on interdisciplinary research teams integrated into global academic networks; these teams replace traditional disciplinary departments and ensure intensive communication among faculty members within and across disciplines.

Research teams are formed through an innovative faculty search procedure thereby finalists get together in Tyumen for a project design session where they self-organize into interdisciplinary teams and propose research projects. Core members of the best project teams receive full-time faculty positions at SAS.

Online broadcast with synchronous Russian translation here.

Faculty Candidates

film studies
environmental anthropology
sociology, economics
anthropology, history
sociology, media studies
media and cultural studies
philosophy, ethics
political science
social neuroscience
insect chemical ecology
anthropology
neuroscience
computer science
biomedicine
computer science

Faculty Search: Interdisciplinary Research Project Design Session. Faculty candidates from 10 countries. 8–11 March, 2018. Video, Selected Episodes.

SAS research program relies on interdisciplinary research teams integrated into global academic networks; these teams replace traditional disciplinary departments and ensure intensive communication among faculty members within and across disciplines.

Research teams are formed through an innovative faculty search procedure thereby finalists get together in Tyumen for a project design session where they self-organize into interdisciplinary teams and propose research projects. Core members of the best project teams receive full-time faculty positions at SAS.

Faculty Candidates

sociology
political science
international affairs
political science
art history
anthropology, GIS
political science
philosophy, art
comparative literature
comparative literature
political science & political economy
comparative literature

Faculty Search. Interdisciplinary Research Project Design Session. 28 faculty candidates, 21 universities, 9 countries. 3,4,5 March. Video, Selected Episodes.

In September 2017, teaching and research at SAS will commence with our first faculty starting their tenure. After reviewing over 300 applications and conducting many dozens of preliminary interviews, we invited shortlisted candidates to Tyumen to take part in an intensive 3-day project design session.

During the session, which took place on March 3-5, our candidates self-organized into interdisciplinary teams and proposed collective research projects to be realized at SAS. All the candidates, along with invited external experts, SAS staff and other stakeholders discussed the proposed projects thoroughly in order to find and help outline those most promising for the formation of SAS research agenda.

Conferences

27.06.2021

About forum

On June 27, SAS will hold the Dare to Experiment in Higher Education forum, which will act as a discussion platform on the topic of the transformation of contemporary universities. Tradition lies at the core of higher education. Yet, universities must keep changing to stay afloat intellectually and institutionally. Experimentation allows us to walk the line between stability and innovation. Unlike parachuting foreign models, it is a way to borrow ideas while also ensuring that the solutions we develop fit the context.  Experiments are necessary for Russian universities to formulate their own answer to the key questions facing higher education. Who should control the educational design? Where does the educational vision come from? What should the role of a student really be? Does technology make a real difference? What determines universities’ transformation? 
  • Leading experts in the field of higher education transformation
  • Four moderated discussions
  • Experience in implementing the Experimental Higher Education MA program 
We invite university leaders and experts in the field of higher education transformation, as well as potential applicants of the Experimental Higher Education master’s degree program, who might see participation in the forum as an opportunity to enroll and study for free.  Registration, program, and all the details about the forum are available on the website. Those who did not have time to register for participation in the Forum can join the discussion via an online broadcast on the SAS YouTube channel. Venue: UTMN, School of Advanced Studies (SAS). Forum languages: Russian, English (with simultaneous translation).
03.06.2021
While concepts such as free will, consciousness, and cognition (FWCC) were initially studied by philosophers – including by almost all ‘big names’ –, nowadays these topics are actively investigated in several disciplines. Many contemporary researchers find inspiration in other disciplines than their home field to enrich their research.  This conference brings together experts on free will, consciousness, and cognition from various disciplinary origins, notably philosophy, AI, neuroscience, and physics.  Key topics at the workshop (this is not an exhaustive list): 
  • Contemporary scholarship on free will, consciousness, cognition in the mentioned disciplines, with special interest for cross-disciplinary research 
  • Artificial FWCC in AI-research and (quantum) physics 
  •  Artificial consciousness and ethics in AI and robotics. How far are we from artificial consciousness and superintelligence in AI? How to get there? 
  • Free will and (in)determinism: insights from various disciplines  
17–18.05.2019

About symposium

Love is revolting. It both inspires revulsion and has revolutionary potential. From its sticky, intimate moments of boundary-crossing and home-making to its revolutionary potential in the arguments of Charles Fourier, Alexandra Kollontai, Martin Luther King Jr., and the ecosexuals, love strikes us as an ambivalent concept of pivotal importance to humans. In recent years, a growing number of thinkers have suggested that love be critically reinvigorated in both social and political thought and action. And yet, it continues to revolt (us), and this reinvigorating has yet to be done robustly and systematically.

Love is Revolting is a two-day interdisciplinary symposium at the School of Advanced Studies (SAS), University of Tyumen that invites scholars across the disciplines to engage in discussions about love. Among other topics, we encourage discussion about love and its connection to matter and bodies; its revolutionary potential for imagining new futures and modes of belonging; its ambivalence, slipperiness and grotesqueness as both a practice and concept; its relationship to power and subject-formation; and the emergence of new forms of loving in our techno-ecological age.

16–17.06.2018

About forum

The forum will bring together scholars, teachers and administrators from leading colleges and universities in different countries to discuss the following issues:
  • How does the notion of critical thinking evolve historically, what is its (changing) relationship with the notions of critique, critical thought and disinterested scientific enquiry?
  • Can critical thinking thrive in the era of political polarization?
  • What does critical thinking involve beyond a set of analytic techniques, such as logic and argument analysis?
  • Is developing critical thinking still the major goal of multidisciplinary education and, if so, how can it be taught effectively to contemporary students? Does AI and digital technologies challenge us to change the way we conceptualize critical thinking?
  • Which lessons from psychology and cognitive science could give us some insights for teaching critical thinking?
30.09–01.10.2017

About forum

The second annual Disciplinary Landscape forum will be devoted to the notion of truth in its historical and disciplinary dimensions. We will discuss the philosophical foundations of the notion of truth, including the opposition of modernist truth and “post-truth”, the various functions of the concept of truth in different political, social and cultural frameworks, and the permutations of the idea of truth effected by the Russian Revolution. On the second day of the forum we will group paper presenters and SAS faculty into disciplinary teams and invite them to reflect on the different notions of truth used in the contemporary disciplines of philosophy, history, cultural studies, and sociology.