Michael Stoeltzner

Michael Stoeltzner

What brought you to work or get interested in the Congress’ fields?

During all my years at colege and university I was fascinated by both the humanities, philosophy and history, and the sciences, physics and mathematics. I first studied philosophy without doing much philosophy of science, then went  into physics with a ­specialization in theory. At the end of my study I came across the Vienna Circle, and worked myself into philosophy of science from a more historical perspective. In recent years I have ­returned to systematic and more ‘technical’ problems, among them the ­epistemology of the new particle accelerator at CERN and the interactions between mathematics and physics.

What has your participation to the Congress brought you?

As every large international congress it provided me with the ­opportunity to talk to colleagues from all over the world. For this it was very good to be in a beautiful city rather than an anonymous hotel. What is special about this Congress series is that you meet a lot of people from countries that are not so well represented in the mainstream discussions and where our scientific discipline is not yet fully developed.

What is your opinion about your portrait?

Technically, it’s really great and I like it to a certain extent. It is however way more austere and stern than I think I am. And many of my friends do not like it for this reason. Perhaps it strongly ­reveals the differences in what the French and the American ­picture of a philosopher is, or between philosophers in the ­classical sense and the special breed of philosophers of science who would hardly ever choose such a portrait for their webpage.


Michael Stoeltzner - Universität Bielefeld