Gillian Barker

  • Visiting Research Professor

Gillian Barker received her training at the University of Toronto and the University of California, San Diego, and has held positions at Indiana University and the Rotman Institute of Philosophy at Western University, Ontario. Her recent research has focused on complex adaptive systems at different levels of organization, and how science can best grapple with their distinctive features. She has investigated these issues in human immunology, ecological and psychological resilience, evolutionary dynamics, and what evolved human nature can teach us about the prospects for social change. Her current research applies similar ideas to the problems of understanding and managing the interconnected global-scale processes upon which human societies depend: what she calls "geo-functions." This research connects recent developments in climate science, ecology, agricultural science, and hydrology, and involves extensive collaboration across academic disciplines and with non-academic expert practitioners. She is also coauthor with Philip Kitcher of the textbook Philosophy of Science: A New Introduction