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Dear friends of the KLI,

Welcome to the last KLife Newsletter of 2021. We would like to share with you ideas and experiences we've been working on at the KLI and invite you to engage in the upcoming activities. In this issue, we are especially excited to share with you a new call for writing-up fellows on "Cognition and knowledge: Between Evolution and Sustainability" and offer you snapshots of our diverse fellows, collaborations, events, and publications.

Sending thoughts of reason and health in these troubled times,
Guido Caniglia for The KLI Team
We are thrilled to announce 5 Writing-Up Fellowships for late-stage PhD students working on topics related to “Cognition and Knowledge: Between Evolution and Sustainability.” Details of the call can be found here. We look forward to receiving applications especially in the following research areas: Evolution of cognition and knowledge in multiple taxa, cognition and knowledge for more sustainable human-environment interactions, cognition and knowledge in science. The first deadline is February 28, 2022. Get in touch!

Our diversity cohort

The current cohort of dissertation writing-up fellows were selected from last year's fellowship call: “Dealing with diversity in the life and sustainability sciences" for their unique projects on "diversity." We asked Marina Knickel, Rongkun Liu, Ely Mermans, Afika Njwaxu, and Vitor Renck to talk about what "diversity" means to them and how they approach it in their work.

When evo-devo meets music, philosophy, and the cognitive sciences

KLI fellow Alejandro Villanueva Hernández weaves together a rich tapestry of projects and talents. Read more to see how the theory and performance of music, especially local, indigenous music, can be beautifully combined with the philosophy of the biological and cognitive sciences under an evo-devo framework.

2022 Winter KLI Colloquia

Our winter colloquium series continues after the holiday season. We will restart on Jan 13th with a special colloquium: Seeing Clearly Through COVID-19 with the editors and authors of two topical collections at HPLS. Save the date for Caitlin McDonough-Goldstein's talk on the 20th on Possibilities of Queer and Feminist Reproductive Biology and Sandra Mitchell's talk on the 26th: Through the Fractured Looking Glass.

Our colloquium series will be announced by email. If you haven't already, please subscribe to our mailing list to receive updates and notifications.

Special Symposium

Mendel turns 200 in 2022!

On the occasion of Gregor Mendel's 200th birthday, our alumni Barbara Fischer, Lynn Chiu, and Philipp Mitteröcker at University of Vienna will organize a special symposium in October, 2022 on Mendel's legacy in science and society. This event is part of their larger program (including the Natural History Museum of Vienna) under the INTERREG grant "G. J. Mendel's Legacy for Science, Culture, and Humanity." #Mendel200
Vienna Series

Levels of Organization in the Biological Sciences: an interview with the editors

Daniel Brooks, James DiFrisco, and William (Bill) Wimsatt published a new volume in the Vienna Series in Theoretical Biology of the MIT Press: Levels of Organization in the Biological Sciences. Dan and James explain how they put together the workshop and the book in a behind-the-scenes interview.

Biological Theory

December issue is now out

The December issue includes a section commemorating Richard Lewontin (1929-2021) and a tribute to Karen Neander (1954-2020). In a new entry in our “Classics in Biological Theory” series, Nyhart and Lidgard look at the political context and still-relevant debates surrounding G.G. Simpson’s 1941 paper “The Role of the Individual in Evolution.” Click this link to access the free epdfs of this issue.


KLI visiting fellows

We were lucky that some visitors were able to visit the KLI despite the ongoing pandemic and a 4th lockdown in December. Historian of economic thought Antoine Missemer visited the KLI to work on a new book with Marco Vianna Franco. Evolutionary anthropologist Nicole Torres Tamayo came to work with Nicole Grunstra on adaptive covariation between pelvic and thoracic morphology in humans. Evolutionary biologist Daniel Brooks's visited to collaborate with Orsolya Bajer-Molnár on conceptualizing evolutionary prevention within the global public health infrastructure. And finally, visitor Emily Bock worked on her project: theoretical genealogies of adaptation.

New position

Evolvability of inner and middle ears in birds and mammals

Moving on from the KLI but staying close... postdoc fellow Nicole Grunstra will leave the KLI after nearly 2.5 years to take up an exciting new postdoctoral research position at the University of Vienna. Read about her role in the FWF-funded project “Evolvability of inner and middle ears in birds and mammals.”

New book

The Making and Breaking of Minds: How social interactions shape the human mind

Our very own Isabella Sarto-Jackson published a new book on "the cross-talk between biological and cultural factors that become manifested in the individual brain development, neural wiring, neurochemical homeostasis, and behavior." Stay tuned for a more detailed exploration of the book in the next KLife Newsletter!

New book

Global Epistemologies and Philosophies of Science

Organized by Luana Poliseli, we hosted a Meet the Editors & Authors event on her new co-edited book: Global Epistemologies and Philosophies of Science. Luana also helped translate entries in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on Philosophy of Science to Portuguese, published in 'Série Investigações Filosóficas.'

New book

Do you work on social insects? Participate in a survey!

Participate in Alice Laciny's Social insect research and neurodiversity survey to "assess the global community of social insect researchers regarding the focus of their research approaches and interests, as well as their views on neurodiversity." This is part of her ÖAW L’ORÉAL fellowship with KLI alumna Sidney Carls-Diamante and Giorgia Silani (Vienna) on neurodiversity and anthropomorphism in social insect research.

If you missed the October issue of KLife, you can read it here.

Get in touch!

The KLI is an independent center of advanced studies in the life and sustainability sciences. The mission of the institute is to enable scientific reasoning that can contribute to understanding and sustaining life on Earth in its biological, cognitive, social, and cultural diversity.

The KLI supports research focusing on evolutionary theory, especially in its relation to development, cognition, and sustainability science, as well as on the history, philosophy, and social studies of science.

You can find further information about KLI on our Homepage, Twitter, and YouTube.
This newsletter was designed and created with love by Communications Manager Lynn Chiu. Please send comments and questions to
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