Shamik Dasgupta

Research Expertise and Interest

metaphysics, philosophy of science

Research Description

Shamik Dasgupta is an associate professor in the Department of Philosophy at UC Berkeley.  He works and teaches primarily in metaphysics and the philosophy of science. His research has focused on using symmetries in physics as a guide to metaphysics. There are three parts to this project:

  1. Some of his work (IndividualsAbsolutism vs ComparativismThe Bare NecessitiesQuality and StructureSubstantivalism vs Relationalism) addresses first-order metaphysical questions about the nature of individuals, quantities, and space-time respectively. In each case he uses symmetry considerations to motivate theses of a structuralist flavor.
  2. What is the content of metaphysical theses like these? Two papers (On the Plurality of GroundsThe Possibility of Physicalism) discuss a notion of ground that can be used to formulate a variety of metaphysical theses. And in Metaphysical Rationalism he relates this notion of ground to the Principle of Sufficient Reason.
  3. What justifies this use of symmetry as a guide to metaphysics? Two papers (Symmetry as an Epistemic Notion (Twice Over)Inexpressible Ignorance) develop the epistemology of this use of symmetry.


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