Research Initiatives

Biology and Society is home to both traditional and more collaborative research projects that draw on the interdisciplinary strengths of programs in the history and philosophy of science, environmental sciences, and bioethics, policy and law.

Biology Education

Stay tuned for more information. Click here to learn more about current projects 

Computational History & Philosophy of Science

We use a variety of computational tools and techniques to aid historical and philosophical study of the life sciences.

The Data Mining and Analytics Team

The Data Mining and Analytics Team focuses on extracting the dynamics of knowledge from real-world data. We build unique and innovative data systems that capture in unprecedented detail the processes that lead to important scientific innovation.  Combining expertise in data wrangling, network science, and advanced statistical modeling, we push at the interdisciplinary boundaries of data science and digital humanities. Link to website coming soon!

Developmental Evolution

The Laubichler Developmental Evolution Laboratory develops and deploys computational approaches to reconstruct and interrogate the the social, material, and conceptual evolution of scientific fields. Our research focuses specifically on pivotal innovations in 20th-century biological and biomedical sciences. Learn more

Digital Innovation Group (DigInG)

The Digital Innovation Group (DigInG) brings together students from computer science and the history and philosophy of science to create new and innovative tools, infrastructure, and methods for computational HPS research and training. Learn more

Environmental History, Ecology, and Economics

Biology and Society researchers explore the historical, ethical, philosophical, ecological, and economic dimensions of human interactions with the environment.

EcoServices

The ecoSERVICES Group at ASU studies the causes and consequences of change in ecosystem services – the benefits that people derive from the biophysical environment. We analyse biodiversity change in terms of its impacts on the things that people care about, ranging from food production to disease regulation to the ethical impulse to protect other species. Learn more

Conservation Studies

What obligations do we have toward species and wildlands in a rapidly changing and increasingly human-shaped environment?  How can a better understanding of the American conservation tradition enhance our efforts to secure a biologically and culturally rich environmental future? Learn more

Fire and History, Worlds and Words

We are uniquely fire creatures on a uniquely fire planet.  Contrasting the usual approach to fire as solely a physical phenomenon, our research concentrates on fire as biologically and culturally constructed as well.  We consider all aspects of fire, including issues of industrial combustion and climate change, although attention to pyrotechnologies and urban fire is minor.  Learn more

History & Philosophy of Science

The interdisciplinary field of history and philosophy of science examines the conceptual foundations of science and the connections of science to society.

Carnap Project

The Carnap Project is an intitiative to produce a set of volumes that will contain all of the works of philosopher of science Rudolf Carnap in English, as well as the original language of publication, with introductions from distinguished scholars. Learn more

digital HPS (dHPS) Consortium

Biology and Society is a founding member of the dHPS Consortium—a network that brings together historians and philosophers of science, with informaticians, computer scientists, and reference librarians with the goal of thinking of new ways to integrate traditional scholarship with digital tools and resources. Learn more

Embryo Project

The Embryo Project engages and connects researchers who aim to capture and investigate the history, science, and contexts of embryos in new ways. Learn more

History of Biology Seminar at the MBL

The seminar covers a range of topics and brings together historians, philosophers, biologists, and social scientists in a week-long intensive discussion. Learn more

HPS Repository

The HPS Repository is an open-source, open-access digital repository that seeks to store in a sustainable way the materials that support the digital HPS projects at Biology and Society. The HPS Repository contains thousands of digitized items in formats ranging from video and audio files to photographs to the graph-products of the DigInG group. Materials in the HPS Repository are available to the public under creative commons license, and storage options will soon be open to HPS-related groups. Learn more

MBL History Project

The MBL History Project seeks to bring to public attention the rich history of the Marine Biological Laboratory, located in Woods Hole, MA. The MBL has been home to many award-winning scientists since it opened in 1888, and this project, run through Biology and Society at ASU, documents that history for the public by digitizing the MBL’s rich archives and creating digital exhibits that put the science of the institution into context for the public. Learn more

NeuroImmunoPhilosophy Project

To study the interface between Immunology, Neuroscience and Philosophy, including its history.  Projects include: (1) Immunoneuropsychology (INP) and the mind-body problem. Does INP have implications for better understanding consciousness and how neurophysiological processes and mind are related?  What are the conceptual/theoretical foundations of INP? (2) The Immunologic Self. Problems associated with self and personal identity.  Can immunologic perspectives help philosophers better understand the concept of self and, conversely, can philosophers help immunologists in their research.  (3) Immunoneuropsychology and socio-ethical issues (including Transhumanism).  The above research projects all require learning about immunology, neuroscience and philosophy (particularly philosophy of mind). For more information contact Steve Hoffman (stevehoffman@asu.edu)

Life Science Ethics

Biology and Society researchers combine bioethics, environmental ethics, research ethics, and science studies to bring multiple critical perspectives to bear on ethical issues in the life sciences.

Environmental Ethics

Investigation of the ethical context of decision-making in ecological research and biodiversity management, especially under conditions of rapid environmental change. Supported by the National Science Foundation. Learn more

Ethics Education

Ethical engagement is a vital part of the ongoing development of knowledge and practices in the life sciences.  Biology and Society researchers foster engagement through developing and assessing life science ethics education materials. Learn more

Ethics & Governance

Developments in the biosciences in the last half-century have posed new ethical challenges that have strained existing institutions of governance.  This research engages with these emergent ethical issues, attending in particular to changing relationships between science, politics and law in the governance of the life sciences and technologies in contemporary democracies. For more information, please contact Ben Hurlbut.

Evidenced-Based Education

A team of biology education researchers dedicated to improving undergraduate biology education. Learn More

Genome Editing

Genome editing, stem cell research, and bioengineering have attracted wide attention with the advent of new techniques for manipulating life such as CRISPR Cas9 and gene drives. At ASU, scientists, engineers, social scientists, and humanists come together to probe the many questions about how to recognize and reflect on such challenges in order to seek the best possible outcomes for society and science. Learn more

Neuroscience & Society

Neuroscience and society includes projects on the comparative study of the evolution and development of brains and behavior, emerging technologies for brain repair, psychiatric diagnosis and classification, and the relationship between psychiatry and neuroscience. Learn more

Research Collections

Biology and Society houses important holdings in the history and philosophy of science. For more information, please contact the Center for Biology and Society.

David L. Hull

 

David L. Hull
The David L. Hull Collection consists of books from the personal library of philosopher of science David L. Hull. Learn more

Richard C. Jeffrey

 

Richard C. Jeffrey
The Richard C. Jeffrey Collection consists of books and reprints from the personal library of philosopher Richard C. Jeffrey. Learn more

Philip J. Pauly

 

Philip J. Pauly
The Philip J. Pauly Collection consists of article reprints, books, research notes, manuscripts, and correspondence from historian of science Philip J. Pauly. Learn more

Alfred H. Sturtevant

 

Alfred H. Sturtevant
The Alfred H. Sturtevant Collection consists of reprints from the personal library of geneticist Alfred H. Sturtevant. Learn more

Publications, Video, & Audio

Biology and Society's faculty and researchers are active and prestigious scholars, publishing well reviewed books, as well as engaging in critical conversations about science and science in society within our ASU community and beyond in both audio and video formats. Click below to access their work.

 

Collaborating Centers & Institutions

Biology and Society collaborates with research centers and institutions around the world:

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A research unit of the
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
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