Philosophy of Neuroscience

I defend a contextualist approach to functional description and localization in the brain. On this view, parts of the brain are genuinely multifunctional. In previous work, I argued that contextualism is an empirically adequate view, which grounds limited generalizability and projectabiity.

In recent papers I have applied the contextualist framework to the problem of functionally decomposing brain networks, the issues of reductionism and mechanistic explanation, and the nature of neural representations

In ongoing work, I have begun thinking about what all of this means for the problem of cognitive ontology, i.e., how to individuate psychological kinds. I am enamored of a view on which psychological kinds are not themselves explanantia, but only guides towards what is genuinely explanatory -- the way in which brain networks are organized in real time to function in particular task contexts.

Relevant papers: