Judea Pearl is a professor of computer science and the director of the Cognitive Systems Laboratory at UCLA. He is known internationally for his contributions to artificial intelligence, human reasoning and philosophy of science. He is the author of over three hundred scientific papers and three landmark books in his fields of interest: Heuristics (1984), Probabilistic Reasoning (1988), and Causality (2000). His current interests are artificial intelligence and knowledge representation, probabilistic and causal reasoning, nonstandard logics and learning strategies. Pearl is the father of slain Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation, which he co-founded with his family in February 2002, "to continue Daniel’s life-work of dialogue and understanding and to address the root causes of his tragedy."
Tagged with “free will” (3)
Neuroscientist, writer and ‘possibilian’ David Eagleman popped into the podcast studio to tell Charlotte Stoddart about his new book on the secret, subconscious, lives of the brain. Find out how much of what you think and perceive is subconscious (more than you might expect!) and how neuroscience could change the way we think about criminal behaviour and punishment.
Tom Clark is director of the non-profit Center for Naturalism and author of Encountering Naturalism: A Worldview and Its Uses. He writes on science, free will, consciousness, addiction and other topics, and maintains Naturalism.org, an extensive resource on worldview naturalism. He is also moderator for the monthly philosophy cafÃ at Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, MA.
In this interview with D.J. Grothe, Tom Clark discusses the implications of a thorough-going scientific naturalism for the concepts of the self and of free will. He contrasts "contra-causal free will" with kinds of political or social freedom, and argues that the former is a vestige of outmoded religious or dualistic thinking. He talks about compatibilism, and how he can be a skeptic of free will while also prizing personal freedom, how determinism can be compatible with certain kinds of free will. He explores what these implications of scientific naturalism might actually mean for criminal justice, and how rejecting concepts of free-will may empower society to be more humanistic and to solve social ills more effectively. And he talks about the growth of skepticism about free will, both in the academic scientific communities and in the skeptic and freethought world.