Fellow: Awarded 2008
Field of Study: Philosophy
Competition: US & Canada
Paolo Mancosu is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Chair of the Group in Logic and the Methodology of Science there. He was educated at the Catholic University of Milan (Laurea, 1984), writing his undergraduate thesis on mathematical logic, and attended Stanford University (Ph.D., 1989) as a Fulbright Fellow, studying philosophy. He then spent a year studying the history and philosophy of mathematics and science as a Stipendary Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford, before accepting an appointment as an associate professor of philosophy at Yale University in 1992.
During his three years at Yale, he had two fellowships: he was Alexander von Humboldt Fellow in Berlin in 1993-94, where he completed his first book, Philosophy and Mathematics and Mathematical Practice in the Seventeenth Century (Oxford UP, 1996), and began research for his second, From Brouwer to Hilbert (Oxford UP, 1998), which dealt with the history of the foundations of mathematics in the 1920s; and he completed his time at Yale as a Fellow at its Whitney Humanities Center. He joined the philosophy faculty at UC Berkeley in 1995.
Since moving to Berkeley, Mr. Mancosu has continued to receive many prominent fellowships and grants, in addition to a three-year NSF National Scholar Award (1999-2001) to fund his project “Mathematical Explanation.” During this time he also served as “Directeur de recherché invite au CNRS” (2004-05), where he worked with two CNRS groups: IHPST, which named him “member associé,” and REHSEIS. That same year Visualization, Explanation and Reasoning Styles in Mathematics, which he edited, was published by Springer. His latest monograph, The Philosophy of Mathematical Practice, was published by Oxford in 2008. He is also the author of more than forty articles in major international journals.
The high interest in his researches has led to his giving over one hundred invited lectures in more than twenty countries, and invitations to visit the Steklov Institute in Moscow, the Technische Universität in Berlin, ETH in Zurich, and CUNY and Johns Hopkins University, among others. He has also been an organizer of many professional conferences. Mr. Mancosu is on the editorial boards of a number of major journals in his field, among them Synthese, History and Philosophy of Logic, and Review of Symbolic Logic, and he is a referee for several major journals and institutions.