Workshop: Teleosemantics and the Nature of Functions

Abteilung Philosophie
Universität Bielefeld > Fakultät > Philosophie > Personen > Fabian Hundertmark > Workshop: Teleosemantics and the Nature of Functions

Teleosemantics and the Nature of Functions


A Research Workshop
Bielefeld University, September 7th-8th 2017

organized by the research project Advancing Teleosemantics (SCHU 2860/2-1, NI 1320/2-1), funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).


  • Marc Artiga Universitat de València web
  • Justin Garson Hunter College New York web
  • Fabian Hundertmark Universität Bielefeld web
  • Ulrich Krohs Universität Münster web
  • Brian Leahy Universität Konstanz web
  • Javier González de Prado Salas Universidad Autónoma de Madrid web
  • Ema Sullivan-Bissett University of Birmingham web

What the Workshop Will be About   One of the central theoretical elements in teleosemantics is the notion of function, which is usually understood in an etiological way. This reference to etiological functions seems to account for the advantages of teleosemantic theories, but it is also responsible for some of their apparent drawbacks.

The goal of this workshop is to investigate the question of whether there is a viable alternative to the etiological approach and whether such an alternative is needed in the first place. The following questions may be pursued among others: Can the explanatory role of contents adequately be captured by the etiological theory? And if so, what version of it suits this purpose best? Does the swampman thought experiment show that teleosemantics should use a non-historical theory of functions? Can misrepresentations also be explained with the help of organizational or system-theoretic functions?

Venue    Bielefeld University, building X, room A2-103

Schedule and information   The schedule can be found here: Link

Registration   Attendance is free. To register please email Fabian Hundertmark ( with the subject line “Workshop registration”.