Applying Peirce

The Second International Conference on Peirce's Thought and Its Applications

Helsinki, Finland & Tallinn, Estonia
21-23 April 2014


Research in Charles Sanders Peirce’s thought has grown rapidly both within and outside the arena of philosophy on the global level. Peirce’s pioneering contributions to philosophy, pragmatism, logic, the theory of signs, philosophy of science and to numerous other fields are currently being explored not only in philosophy but also in other sciences and in art studies.

The second installment of the Applying Peirce conference, first held in Helsinki in June 2007, brings together Peirce scholars and researchers to explore and discuss Peirce’s thought and applications in diverse fields.

The year 2014 marks the centenary of Peirce’s death in Milford, Pennsylvania, in 19 April 1914. The meeting takes place in the twin cities of Helsinki and Tallinn, connected by a two-hour ferry ride. The programme consists of workshops and a small selection of contributed papers.


The conference takes place at Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia (21 April) and the University of Helsinki, Finland (22-23 April).

The program begins on 21 April 2014 at 10 am in Tallinn. The conference is organized at Tallinn University of Technology (TUT), address: Akadeemia street 3; building no. X, 3rd floor, lecture room X-311. To get to Tallinn University of Technology from the city center, take trolley no 3 opposite Kaubamaja (Tallinn Department Store) or express bus no 11 (Kunstiakadeemia stop) to Keemia stop. We will organise an informal gathering in the city center on 21 morning to go together to the University.

In Helsinki, the conference takes place at the Topelia building of the University of Helsinki, address Unionionkatu 38, class C120. On 22 April, the programme in Helsinki begins at 11:30 am. The location is a 5 minute walk away from the conference hotel.

All participants arriving from Tallinn on the morning of 22 April are recommended to take the Viking Line day cruise departing from Tallinn at 8:00 and arriving in Helsinki at 10:40 am. Note that you should be boarding at least half an hour before the departure of the ferry.

The conference organizers:

  • Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen (Chair)
  • Mats Bergman (Co-chair)
  • Henrik Rydenfelt (Secretary)
  • Jean-Marie Chevalier
  • Juuso-Ville Gustafsson
  • Jelena Issayeva
  • Erkki Kilpinen
  • Marko Marila
  • Amirouche Moktefi
  • Jukka Nikulainen
  • Sami Paavola

The conference has been sponsored by the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies and the Ragnar Nurkse School of Innovation and Governance.

Call for Papers

The organizers invite submissions on any topic in accordance to the theme of the conference. We encourage proposals that explore the applicability of Peirce’s thought to current questions and problems in various disciplines across the sciences and the arts that identify the leading edge on Peirce studies. (For a separate call on Peirce and his students see separate call below.) Suitable topics include, but are not limited to, Peirce in connection to

  • history of science
  • mathematics, logic, diagrams
  • abductive reasoning
  • communication and rhetoric
  • cognitive and computing sciences
  • linguistics, semiotics
  • fine arts and design
  • physics, biology, geology
  • psychology, economics, sociology
  • anthropology, archaeology

Please send an abstract of 300-500 words to by 1 February 2014 (in pdf, rtf or doc format). Notifications of acceptance will be sent by 8 February 2014. A time slot of about 30-35 minutes (including discussion) will be allotted for each paper.

Call for Papers: Peirce and His Students

Tallinn, Estonia, 21 April 2014

It has sometimes been claimed that, unlike many other classical philosophers, Charles Peirce had few or even no intellectual heirs at all. This event intends to establish the extent of relationships between Peirce and his pupils, students, collaborators, successors and inheritors – and to what extent these notions themselves also call for historical and philosophical clarification when it comes to the legacy of a great thinker.

Although having held no permanent academic position, Peirce led the Metaphysical Club and instructed a famous circle of logic and philosophy students at Johns Hopkins University. Moreover, he lectured often, developed correspondence courses, collaborated with a number of scientists, and contributed with his student Joseph Jastrow to what became the field of experimental psychology. His correspondence reveals that many were eager to learn from him, and he designed courses with attention to logic teaching and pedagogy. Thanks to the efforts of Ladd-Franklin and many others, a Peircean school of logic may have been in the making already in his lifetime. These and many other issues invite a closer investigation of Peirce’s legacy as viewed through his students.

Possible topics include:

  • Peirce’s students at the Johns Hopkins University: John Dewey, Allan Marquand, Christine Ladd-Franklin, Oscar Howard Mitchell, Benjamin Ives Gilman, Joseph Jastrow, Ellery W. Davies, Thorstein Veblen, Josiah Royce, Henry Taber. How do Peirce’s teachings show up in their own careers?
  • Peirce’s influence on his colleagues and collaborators; his place in academia; his own research groups
  • The impact of the Metaphysical Club to the development of science and philosophy
  • Students in Peirce’s correspondence; Peirce’s correspondence courses
  • Schröder, Ladd-Franklin and other logicians and philosophers pursuing Peirce’s logics; the nature of the Peircean lineage in logic
  • Peirce's influence on Ramsey and the Cambridge community
  • Welby’s significs in comparison to Peirce’s
  • The reception of pragmaticism in his lifetime

Submissions (max. one page abstract) should be sent to by 28 February 2014. Notifications by 8 March 2014.

Organisers: Jean-Marie Chevalier (Collège de France) & Amirouche Moktefi (Tallinn University of Technology).


Tallinn, Monday, 21 April

10.00-13.00 Peirce and His Students

Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen (University of Helsinki / Tallinn University of Technology)
The Second Metaphysical Club and Its General Significance to the Development of American Science

Kana Shindo (Meiji University, Japan)
Inheritance from Peirce to Dewey: Growth as Experimental Inquiry and Creative Intelligence

Neil W. Williams (University of Sheffield, UK)
James’s Application of Peirce

Jean-Marie Chevalier (Collège de France)
Was Benjamin Ives Gilman a Peircean till His Last Days?

Amirouche Moktefi (Tallinn University of Technology)
The Rivalry between Peirce and his Logic Students

14.00-16.00 Gaetano Albergo (University of Catania)
Pretence, a Case of Iconism without Symbolism

Tyler James Bennett (Tartu University)
Peirce and the Empirical Study of Signs

Tommi Vehkavaara (University of Tampere)
Applicability of Peirce’s Logical Concept of Sign

Sharon Morris (University College London)
Peirce and the Contemporary Work of Art

16.30-18.30 Claudia Cristalli (University of Pisa)
Peirce on Perception

Marc Champagne (University of York)
A Peircean Semiotic Interpretation of the Sperling Results

Simone Morcagni (EHESS) and Jean-Marie Chevalier (Collège de France)
Perceptive Facts in a World of Values

Shannon Dea (University of Waterloo)
Towards A Peircean Metaphysics of Sex

Helsinki, Tuesday, 22 April

11.00-11.30 Registration and arrival from Tallinn

11.30-13.30 Frederik Stjernfelt (University of Copenhagen
Types of Theorematical Reasoning

Francesco Belluci (Tallinn University of Technology)
Peirce on Deduction

Alexander Gerner (University of Lisbon)
Enhancing Attention by the Technique of Perspective-taking in Theoric/Theorematic Body-Diagram Transformations

Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen (University of Helsinki)

13.30-14.30 Lunch

14.30-17.00 Chiara Ambrosio (University College London)
Reasoning In Action: Charles S. Peirce’s History of Science

Chris Campbell (University College London)
Dmitri Mendeleev and Charles Sanders Peirce: A Case of Relations

Break (15 minutes)

Pierre-Luc Dostie Proulx (UC Louvain)
Putting Peirce’s Anti-Scepticism Into Use: Considerations for Moral Epistemology

Agnieszka Hensoldt (University of Opole)
Peirce and the Pragmatic Theory of Information

Chair and comments: Henrik Rydenfelt (University of Helsinki)

17.00-17.30 Break

17.30-19.15 17:30-18:15
Helmut Pape (University of Bamberg)
Compulsions, Forces and Assertions. Peirce on the Semiotics of Rhetorics

Jaakko Hintikka (Boston University / University of Helsinki)
The Place of Peirce in the History of Logic

19.15-20.00 Wine & Cheese

Wednesday, 23 April

10.00-12.30 Sami Paavola (University of Helsinki)
Abduction Embedded in Social Interaction

Donald Stanley (Maine Medical Center), with Daniel Campos (Brooklyn College)
Experience in Medical Practice: Generating and Selecting Diagnoses

Ilkka Niiniluoto (University of Helsinki)
Abduction and Inverse Problems

Break (15 minutes)

Discussion panel

Mats Bergman (University of Helsinki)
The Launch of the New Version of Commens

12.30-13.30 Lunch break

13.30-18.00 Margareta Bertilsson (University of Copenhagen)
On Why's, How's, and What's - And Why What's Also Matter

Erkki Kilpinen (University of Helsinki)
Peirce’s Revolutionary Concept of Habit

Merja Bauters (Aalto University)
Worth of Experience in Informal Learning

Štěpán Pudlák (Charles University, Prague)
Peirce's Semiotics in the Study of Schizophrenia

15.30-16.00 Break

16.00-18.00 Benoit Gaultier (University of Helsinki)
The Ethos of Science and the Way of Inquiry

Marko Marila (University of Helsinki)
Abduction and Archaeology’s "New Epistemology"

Zoe Crossland (Columbia University)
Semeiotic Agency and the Corpse that Speaks

Pentti Määttänen (University of Helsinki)
Peirce and the Problem of Internal Representations