Breakthrough Prize: Deadline extended to 10 April

The deadline for nominations for the 2021 Breakthrough Prizes has been extended to 10 April 2020. The Breakthrough Prize honours outstanding, primarily recent, achievements in the categories of Fundamental Physics, Life Sciences and Mathematics. The Prize includes special categories to honour junior researchers (New Horizons) and lifetime achievements.

Visit https://breakthroughprize.org to view prize rules, register to nominate or login to renominate past candidates.

ALLEA General Assembly meetings in London cancelled

Due to the ongoing restrictions on public gatherings as a result of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, ALLEA and the hosting academies have made the decision to cancel all physical meetings in the context of this year’s ALLEA General Assembly.  

We are therefore announcing that the public symposium Research Collaboration in Changing Times on 4 June at the Royal Society will regrettably not take place.  

The business meeting for ALLEA delegates, originally scheduled for 3 June at the British Academy, will be reorganised to take place by correspondence. Member Academies and their delegates will be informed about the procedures in due course. 

This is a difficult decision for ALLEA and the hosting academies in Ireland and the UK, but the health and safety of participants and staff remain our top priority. 

We are asking for your understanding and we are hoping to be able to welcome you on another occasion. 

PEriTiA Call for Papers: Social Indicators of Trust in Experts

ALLEA is pleased to share a PEriTiA Call for Papers for the upcoming international workshop “Social Indicators of Trust in Experts” to be held in Paris on 1-2 October 2020. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 15 April. The aim of this event is to help understand what informal social indicators people use in order to evaluate the trustworthiness of experts.

PEriTiA International Workshop: Social Indicators of Trust in Experts

Date: October 1-2 2020

Organizer(s): Gloria Origgi and Ty Branch, PEriTiA

Location: Paris, Institut Jean Nicod, Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS)

Keynote speakers: Dan Sperber, Mark Alfano, Cristina Bicchieri

Call for Papers

When we are not competent enough ourselves, we rely on experts to advise us and to act in our best interest, with the vulnerability involved in such a dependence on the competence and goodwill of others. How do we evaluate the trustworthiness of experts? Since we appeal to experts when we lack relevant epistemic competence, we cannot judge their trustworthiness on direct epistemic grounds. Reliance on experts and appeal to their domains of expertise extends well beyond traditional measures of impact, authority, and ranking. Formal indicators are complemented by informal social indicators (quality, credibility and trustworthiness), which work as cues of reputation that are distributed in a social environment.

The aim of this conference, as part of the EU funded project PEriTiA – Policy, Expertise, and Trust in Action, is to help understand what informal social indicators people use in order to evaluate the trustworthiness of experts. Among the informal social indicators there are emotions, gossip, authority, social status and the biases that underscore them. For example, when lay persons rapidly estimate the credibility of a doctor, they rely on informal social indicators like recommendations from trusted individuals (word-of-mouth), perceived social prestige (social status), and emotional response to the doctor. Such examples show how social indicators can combine and conflict in expected and unexpected ways, the consequences of this socially shaped reliance on expertise, and their overall social impact.

On the subject of informal social indicators, we welcome theoretical and empirical contributions (including case studies) addressing epistemic, normative and practical aspects of trust in experts. Questions/topics for consideration include, but are not limited to:

  1. How do people use reputation in order to establish the epistemic credibility of experts?
  2. What is epistemic authority and when is it reasonable to attribute it to experts?
  3. How status relations influence the credibility of experts?
  4. To what extent can gossip be a reliable way of extracting information from an epistemic social environment?
  5. What are the social biases that participate into the formation of credibility deficits of a group?
  6. What are the emotional aspects that influence the attribution of epistemic authority and status to experts?

Papers will be presented in sessions of 40 minutes and a selection of papers will be published in a journal.

Abstract submission details

We invite abstracts of 500-1000 words by April 15th, 2020.

Abstracts should be sent to SocialIndicatorsParis2020@gmail.com.

Information regarding acceptance should be available by mid-May.

‘Trust in a Changing World’ – PEriTiA kicks off with international symposium in Dublin

PEriTiA – Policy, Expertise and Trust in Action – has been launched today with the inaugural symposium ‘Trust in a Changing World’ hosted by University College Dublin (UCD). Funded for three years by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme, the project addresses the rise of an anti-elitist discourse questioning the trustworthiness of scientific expertise. Researchers will explore the conditions under which people trust expert opinion that shapes public policy.

Keynote speakers of today’s multi-disciplinary symposium include David Farrell (UCD/Royal Irish Academy), José van Dijck (Utrecht University/KNAW), Bobby Duffy (King’s College London), Susan Owens (University of Cambridge/British Academy), and Judith Simon (University of Hamburg).

The discussion will help illuminate the main topics to be further investigated by PEriTiA in the next 3 years. You can follow the discussions on Twitter and Facebook under the hashtag #TrustInAction. The lectures will be made available on PEriTiA’s website.

Learn more about PEritiA

Follow the project on Twitter and Facebook