Knowledge, Understanding, and Wisdom
In collaboration with our global research teams, the Geography of Philosophy Project brings this blog to you.
The GPP studies diversity in people’s conceptions of understanding, wisdom, and knowledge around the world, and seeks to promote cross-cultural research in cognitive science, funded by the John Templeton Foundation. By providing frequent content pertaining to the project, Go Philosophy aims to connect broader, academic audiences to the the interdisciplinary, transcultural themes our project explores.
The best way to become familiarized with the PIs of the Geography of Philosophy Project is by way of their own introductions featured on this blog. The previews provided below connect the experience of the PIs to the empirical nature of GPP’s philosophical inquiry.
Distinguished Professor of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh
“I have been very involved in the development of experimental philosophy. … Independently of the philosophical upshots of the cross-cultural research on philosophical concepts, this interdisciplinary research is intrinsically fascinating. Identifying universal aspects of concepts such as the concepts of knowledge or wisdom tells us something about human nature, about the way human beings structure their experience. Variation tells us something about the diversity of ways in which human beings can navigate their social world. Finally, doing interdisciplinary work is essential to philosophy: It ties philosophy to important and substantial matters and prevents it from losing itself in empty theorizing.”
Board of Governors Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Cognitive Science at Rutgers University
“I am the oldest PI of the Geography of Philosophy Project (GPP) – old enough to have young grandchildren. … Starting in 2000, my students and I were leaders in the creation of the new field of “experimental philosophy” which uses the methods of psychology and neuroscience to evaluate the claims of philosophical theories and assess the evidence offered for those claims. The experimental philosophy movement has now generated over 1000 papers, and has come in second in a poll of “currently hot topics” that “ought to fade away” according to readers of Brian Leiter’s Philosophy Blog. During the last fifteen years, a substantial part of my work has been focused on empirically informed moral psychology.”
Professor of Anthropology at UCLA, and a member of the UCLA Center for Behavior, Evolution, & Culture
“The three PIs of the Geography of Philosophy Project include two philosophers and an anthropologist; I’m the anthropologist. My work has long engaged with philosophical questions concerning the nature of human thinking and its evolutionary, cultural, developmental, and linguistic dimensions. … My empirical work has also engaged philosophical questions about the mind, including similarities and differences in concepts and their development across cultures, the nature of human social cognition, and recently, work in experimental philosophy including work on the role of intentions and other mental states in moral judgments across cultures.”
The Geography of Philosophy Project has research teams based in the the following eight regions: Eastern Europe, Ecuador, India, Japan, Morocco, Peru, South Africa, and South Korea. Our advisors and many collaborators also span regions of Australia, Canada, England, and beyond.
The project at large performs cross-cultural research on the philosophical concepts of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the project, researchers in areas of philosophy, anthropology, psychology, linguistics, and more touch on the various ways their work relates to the three central themes. Explore these intersections through the content of this blog: either “Search by topic” on the right-hand menu, peruse the top menus, or read selections of our recent work on the blog. Following us on social media channels, besides providing yet another way to get updates on new blog content, is a way to become engaged in the academic community surrounding the GPP.