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An Ontology of Animal Minds

Evidence of Animal Minds

An Interdisciplinary Symposium

This event took place in Durham on 18-20 April 2016. It was sponsored by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour, the European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association, Durham University’s Seedcorn Research Fund and Durham University’s Institute of Advanced Study.

As contribution to Durham IAS's 2015-16 exploration of the theme of Evidence, this three-day symposium examined the problem of evidence in accounting for the phenomenon of ‘animal minds’ – the existence and character of (broadly conceived) mental phenomena in non-human animals. This controversial question offers a rich case for exploring the meanings of ‘evidence’ from a range of disciplinary perspectives.

The meeting assembled philosophers of mind and of knowledge, neuroscientists, experimental psychologists and ethologists, evolutionary biologists and biological anthropologists, social anthropologists and historians of science, as well as humanities scholars with expertise in visual culture. There were around 100 registered participants, including speakers. For more detail see the project's objectives, framework and programme.

Organisers: Dr Andy Byford (MLAC), Dr Rachel Kendal (Anthropology), Dr Anthony McGregor (Psychology).

Advisory committee: Professor Robert Barton (Anthropology), Professor Janet Stewart (MLAC), Professor David Herman (English), Dr Matthew Eddy (Philosophy), Professor Madeline Eacott (Psychology), Dr Benedict Douglas (Law), Professor Garry Marvin (Social Anthropology), Professor Bennett Zon (Music).

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