March 22, 2012
AMHERST, Mass.—Alan Hájek, a philosophy professor at Australian National University (ANU), will discuss “Blaise and Bayes” in a talk at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 29, in Pruyne Lecture Hall of Amherst College’s Fayerweather Hall. The lecture, which is free and open to the public, is the final event in the 2011–2012 Forry and Micken Lecture Series.
Hájek’s research interests include the philosophical foundations of probability and decision theory, epistemology, the philosophy of science, metaphysics and the philosophy of religion. His paper “What Conditional Probability Could Not Be” won the 2004 American Philosophical Association’s Article Prize for “the best article published in the previous two years” by a “younger scholar.” The Philosopher’s Annual selected his “Waging War on Pascal’s Wager” as one of the 10 best articles in philosophy in 2003.
Hájek first studied statistics and mathematics at The University of Melbourne, where he won Dwight’s Prize in Statistics. He earned an M.A. in philosophy at the University of Western Ontario and a Ph.D. in philosophy at Princeton University, winning the Porter Ogden Jacobus Fellowship. He has taught at The University of Melbourne and the California Institute of Technology; at the latter, he was recognized with the Associated Students of California Institute of Technology Teaching Award. He has also spent time as a visiting professor at MIT, Auckland University and Singapore Management University. Hájek joined the School of Philosophy at ANU as professor of philosophy in February 2005.
Hájek is a Fellow of The Australian Academy of the Humanities. He was the keynote speaker at the 2007 Chinese Analytic Philosophy Association conference in Wuhan and president of the Australasian Association of Philosophy in 2009–2010.
Hájek’s talk is organized by the Amherst College Department of Philosophy and is made possible by the Forry and Micken Fund in Philosophy and Science, established in 1983 by John I. Forry ’66 and Carol Micken to promote the study of philosophical issues arising out of new developments in the sciences, including mathematics, and issues in the philosophy and history of science.