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Sune Hannibal Holm

Sune Hannibal Holm

Lektor

Sune Holm is associate professor in philosophy. He teaches and supervises in practical and theoretical philosophy (metaphysics, philosophy of science, metaethics, moral theory, and applied ethics).

Sune's current research focuses on questions concerning the ontology and functions of artifacts and organisms, the analogy between engineered machines and naturally evolved organisms, and the way these questions inform the ethical agenda of synthetic biology. He is also working on ethics, risk, and uncertainty in relation to emerging biotechnology. In addition he has a long-standing interest in personal identity theories, the topic of his ph.d. dissertation at the University of St. Andrews, and he has recently become interested in topics in the philosophy of medicine, in particular functional accounts of the notions of disease and pathology.

In August 2014 Sune finished an individual research project entitled The Teleological Nature of Designed Synthetic Life funded by the Danish Research Council for Culture and Communication (FKK). From August 2015 Sune will be PI on a 3-year group project funded by FKK entitled Living Machines? The Prospects and Limitations of the Machine Concept of the Organism. Here is a summary of the project:

Are organisms machines? The analogy between biological systems and complex designed human artifacts abound in contemporary life science. To mention a few examples: “genomes are blueprints,” “brains are computers” and “cells are biochemical factories.” The problem guiding this project is this: how should we understand thinking about organisms as engineered systems? What is the theoretical and practical significance of the machine model of the organism? The project will analyze the engineering approach to living systems in the context of synthetic biology, systems biology, and evolutionary theory. More specifically the project will investigate a cluster of interconnected yet distinct philosophical questions about (i) the fundamental nature of living beings, (ii) our understanding and explanation of biological systems, (iii) the methods and metaphors used in the life sciences and biotechnology.

Primære forskningsområder

Moral theory

  • Work discussing the morality of risk-imposing actions from the perspective of consequentialist, rights-based, and contractualist moral theories

  • Work discussing the moral basis of the precautionary principle, the moral significance of risk thresholds, and the role of public deliberation in decisions about risky biotechnology.

  • Interdisciplinary work on ethics and patent law of CRISPR/Cas 9 technology

  • Doctoral research on personal identity and questions about inter- and intrapersonal distribution of welfare.

Environmental, bio-and medical ethics

  • Work on the moral status of living beings and the relation between moral status and the ontology of organisms.

  • Author of some of the first papers discussing the moral status and interests of organisms in light of developments in synthetic biology.

  • Published work assessing biocentric accounts of the moral value of life appealing to natural selection-based accounts of the biological function.

  • Published work analysing function-based concepts of health and disease in the context of synthetic biology.

  • Published work on ethical aspects of synthetic biology, e.g. on the need for an analytic approach.

Applied Philosophy and Philosophy of Technology

  • Work discussing the nature of artifacts and normative and evolutionary accounts of artifact functions.

  • Work on artifacts focusing on morally relevant differences and similarities between organisms and machines.

    Philosophy of Science

  • Work in philosophy of biology focusing on theories of biological function.

  • Work discussing Cartesian mechanical approaches to living systems.

  • Research on causation in biological systems, the ontological and epistemologica role of models in synthetic and systems biology, and on the machine analogy and engineering approaches to biology

Udvalgte publikationer

  1. Udgivet

    Breaking & Entering

    Horst, M., Dalsgård, B., Davies, S. R., Glerup, C., Sandvik, K., Knudsen, J., Juul, A., Heinz, N. & Holm, S. H. 22 jun. 2014

    Publikation: Formidling2D/3D (Fysisk produkt)

  2. Udgivet

    Is Synthetic Biology Mechanical Biology?

    Holm, S. H. 2015 I : History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences. 37, 4, s. 413-429 17 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  3. Udgivet

    Bridging Bioethics and Biology

    Holm, S. H. 2016 I : Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences. 55, s. 133-136 4 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtAnmeldelse

  4. Udgivet

    A Right Against Risk Imposition and the Problem of Paralysis

    Holm, S. H. 2016 I : Ethical Theory and Moral Practice. 19, 4, s. 917-930 14 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  5. Accepteret/In press

    Philosophical Foundations of the Precautionary Principle: Ethics, Policy, and Environment special issue

    Holm, S. H. (red.) & Steel, D. (red.) 2017 Taylor and Francis Group.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtAntologi

  6. Udgivet

    Organism and Artifact?: Proper Functions in Paley Organisms

    Holm, S. H. 2013 I : Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences. 44, 4, s. 706-713 8 s., Part B

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  7. Udgivet

    Disease, Dysfunction, and Synthetic Biology

    Holm, S. H. 2014 I : Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. 39, 4, s. 329-345 17 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  8. Udgivet

    Health as a property of engineered living systems

    Holm, S. H. 2013 I : Bioethics. 27, 8, s. 419-425 7 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  9. Udgivet

    The Capacities, Interests, and Organisation of Artifactual Organisms

    Holm, S. H. 2013 Designer Biology: The Ethics of Intensively Engineering Biological and Ecological Systems. Sandler, R. L. & Basl, J. (red.). Lexington Books, s. 233-252 20 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtBidrag til bog/antologi

  10. Udgivet

    Biological Interests, Normative Functions, and Synthetic Biology

    Holm, S. H. 2012 I : Philosophy & Technology. 25, 4, s. 525-541 17 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

  11. Udgivet

    The Scientific Aspirations of Synthetic Biology and the Need for Analytic Ethics

    Holm, S. H. 2012 I : Ethics, Policy & Environment. 15, 1, s. 25-28 4 s.

    Publikation: Forskning - fagfællebedømtTidsskriftartikel

Udvalgte aktiviteter

  1. 4th Conference for the European Philosophy of Science Association

    Holm, S. H. (Taler)
    29 aug. 2013

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedDeltagelse i workshop, seminar og kursus

  2. Meeting of the International Society for History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Biology

    Holm, S. H. (Taler)
    7 jul. 2013

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedDeltagelse i workshop, seminar og kursus

  3. Society for Philosophy of Science in Practice (SPSP) Fourth Biennial Conference

    Holm, S. H. (Taler)
    26 jun. 201329 jun. 2013

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedDeltagelse i workshop, seminar og kursus

  4. Teleological Organisation

    Holm, S. H. (Arrangør)
    23 aug. 201224 aug. 2012

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedOrganisation af og deltagelse i konference

  5. Engineering Life Philosophical and Societal Perspectives on Synthetic Biology

    Holm, S. H. (Arrangør)
    2 sep. 2011

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedOrganisation af og deltagelse i konference

  6. Organism and Machine: The Conceptual and Normative Challenges of Synthetic Biology

    Holm, S. H. (Arrangør)
    2011

    Aktivitet: Deltagelse i eller arrangering af en begivenhedOrganisation af og deltagelse i konference

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