Ehud Lamm

Ehud Lamm

The Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science; Tel Aviv University

Ehud Lamm is a philosopher and historian of biology. He studies foundational issues in biology using a combination of theoretical biology, modeling and philosophical analysis.  His current research interests are the evolution of the genome, evolution of language and norms, scientific modeling, and evolutionary narratives. 

Profile continued

Ehud Lamm is a philosopher and historian of biology. He studies foundational issues in biology using a combination of theoretical biology, modelling and philosophical analysis. He has a BA in Computer Science, has been a programmer and software development team leader, and has taught Software Engineering and Programming Language Theory. He received his PhD in History and Philosophy of Biology from Tel Aviv University in 2010 where he is now a faculty member at The Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas. His current research interests are: (1) the role of genome organization in evolution (Lamm, 2008, 2011, 2013, 20014; Lamm & Jablonka, 2008; Jablonka & Lamm, 2011); (2) evolution of language and norms (Lamm, 2014b); (3) scientific modelling (Lamm, 2013); (4) evolutionary narratives. With his co-workers he has recently been working on the notions of evolutionary drift, coevolution and development (Lamm & Kammar, 2014), as applied to the evolution of genome and of human mind and culture.

Lamm's research is aimed at analyzing the conceptual toolkits and frameworks used in biological research and design new conceptual tools to understand new biological knowledge. He is interested in understanding the evolution of life, in particular the evolution of genomes and the evolution of higher cognitive functions in humans. His work is based on the premise that overcoming the major stumbling blocks in understanding the evolution of life and the evolution of cognition requires re-engineering foundational conceptual tools of biological science, focusing on evolutionary biology, heredity, and cognition.

Lamm's group employs existing and new methods, stemming from a variety of disciplines, primarily traditional biology (genetics and evolutionary theory) and philosophy of biology and theoretical biology and is in close contact with scientists doing empirical work. Their methods include conceptual analysis, computational and modeling techniques, computational phylogenetics and phylogenomics, and historical research.

Lamm's major current project is concerned with the role of genome organization in evolution and with developing a developmental and mechanistic understanding of genome ontogenetic and phylogenetic dynamics. The project includes a retelling of the history of 20th century genetics centred on attempts to conceptualize the organization of the genome rather than on the discovery of the gene. 

Quote

 

"The systemic, reactive properties of genomes suggest that “neo-Darwinian genes” that are manifested in some, though not necessarily all, circumstances, and hereditary variation more generally, have to be explained by appealing to the reactive nature of the system and the propensities that result from its organization. Neo-Darwinian genetic elements, in this picture, are an outcome of the behavior of a reactive organized system. Mutation-inducing events should not be considered as random on the basis of a priori reasoning, since the type of randomness experienced by a system can be judged only with respect to its organization."

(Lamm, 2011)

Books

Publications

Websites