Submit to Biosemiotics?

Tuesday, 30 June 2020

Half writing day - 36.000 words written first half of 2020

Today I have had half an article writing day, with some 500 words written on the revised version of my article "Anticipating the societal transformation required to solve the environmental crisis in the 21st century". Altogether I have had 7,5 article writing days in June, with some 7.455 words written, the most so far in one month this year (vs. 7.414 words written in January) and 35.915 words written altogether in the first half of 2020.

Total number of writing days in 2020 is up to 46,5.

IF for Biosemiotics in 2019

The impact factor for Biosemiotics in 2019 has just been announced: 1,021 (-0.149 since 2018; ranking is #18/63 for History and Philosophy of Science Journals according to Clarivate Web of Science.

Conceptual draft for Cognitive lab drafted

Today I have made a draft of a conceptual description of the Cognitive lab that is being established at University of Stavanger. The draft is awaiting feedback.

Monday, 29 June 2020

On campus - 3 meetings (all digital)

Today I have attended three meetings - a meeting in relation to the ph.d. programme in social sciences, a meeting related to the UIS cognitive lab that is being established, and a meeting on secure storage of research data.

Sunday, 28 June 2020

Phenomenology chapter finished

Today I have had an article writing day devoted to finishing my phenomenology chapter for the book Semiotic agency: Science beyond mechanism which I am co-writing with Alexei Sharov, with some 900 words written (the chapter is close to 11.000 words altogether).

Total number of writing days this Spring is up to 46.

Friday, 26 June 2020

Article with Haaland revised

Today I had another half article writing day, bringing the Spring´s total up to 45. The work was devoted to the article co-written with Joakim Jiri Haaland, now titled "Guidance towards experiencing joyful leisure: The friluftsliv experiences of children in residential care" and under consideration by Child & Youth Services, with some 100 words written.

Half writing day

Yesterday I had half an article writing day devoted to revision of the article I co-author with Joakim Jiri Haaland. Some -200 words written, net - with some of my initial text now removed. total number of writing days in 2020 is up to 44,5.

A meeting

Today I have attended a Zoom meeting planning for Dyreetikkonferansen 2020.

Thursday, 25 June 2020

Three meetings and an IEA webinar

Today I have attended three meetings: two appointment committee meetings related to positions at our faculty as head of department, and the second meeting of the work group for establishing a cognitive lab at UIS. All digital - though I was on campus. I also attended an IEA webinar on CCS.

Google Scholar: 476 citations

On Google Scholar my work now has 476 citations (+12 since June 4), including 33 from 2020 (+8 since June 4). i10-index remains 17, and h-index 12.

Extensively cited in Jaroš & Pudil 2020

The article "Cognitive Systems of Human and Non-human Animals: At the Crossroads of Phenomenology, Ethology and Biosemiotics" by Filip Jaroš & Matěj Pudil (published in Biosemiotics) cites my work quite extensively.

Footnote 2:
Our contribution should not be understood as adhering to an Uexküllian puritanism. Influenced by an evolutionary-ontogenetic approach, we fully acknowledge the usefulness of the concept of umwelt transition (Tønnessen 2011) and recognize that a one-sided endorsment of umwelt theory can obscure many phenomena of interspecies communication (cf. Lestel 2011b).
P. 4:
In an editorial in this journal, Tønnessen et al. (2018) examine the relationship between phenomenology and biosemiotics and conclude that phenomenological investigation, which is traditionally focused on the experience of the human individual, can be enriched by biosemiotically oriented research on the experience of animals – only against this background will the specificity of human experience emerge.
P. 5:
But not only interspecific differences are worthy of attention. The human individuals also undergo transformations during their own ontogenesis, as reflected in the biosemiotic literature (Tønnessen 2014) and also in Merleau-Ponty´s own work (Merleau-Ponty 2002).
Footnote 4:
For a resolution between signs and signals and its connection with the phenomenality of animal umwelten see Tønnessen et al. (2018: 4).
P. 7:
Accordingly, Tønnessen (2014: 302) notes that language acquisition is connected with a certain loss of those non-verbal aspects of human experience and so “the mature human being’s umwelt consists for the most part only of those objects that can be named”. Once human language is acquired to this extent, it becomes a superior realm of meanings that often pushes out other, e.g. pictorial, representations of the world (cf. Portmann 1990: 113).
P. 7:
Language changes us, it gives us a fully subjective dimension by which we relate to the world because it penetrates our perception, changes it, but also stays flexible. In this sense, language becomes the way by which we live.6 Tønnessen (2014: 288) in this sense distinguishes three aspects of umwelt: the core umwelt, based on automated acts of perception and automated mental acts; mediated umwelt, based on wilful acts of perception and wilful mental acts; and conceptual umwelt, characteristic for higher animals, as an aspect of umwelt distinctive by its habitual acts of perception and habitual mental acts defined as “the learned matching of something with something else”. In the case of humans, this last aspect of umwelt is specifically connected with language use.
Footnote 6:
See Tønnessen (2014: 291): “In terms of umwelt, i.e. subjective experience, we gradually individuate and become first animal, then human, then eventually persons.”
P. 11:
Within the biosemiotic tradition, subjectivity is attributed to every creature that has an umwelt (Tønnessen 2014; Tønnessen et al. 2016).
P. 13:
According to a canonical understanding of umwelt (Tønnessen et al. 2016: definitions 3–5), the form of these meanings is predetermined by belonging to the particular species and is bound to its physiological properties and limitations.
Tønnessen, M. (2011). Umwelt transition and Uexküllian phenomenology: An ecosemiotic analysis of Norwegian wolf management. Doctoral thesis, Department of Semiotics, University of Tartu, Estonia.
Tønnessen,M. (2014). The ontogeny of the embryonic, foetal and infant human umwelt. Sign Systems Studies, 42(2), 281–307.
Tønnessen, M. (2015). Uexküllian phenomenology. Chinese Semiotic Studies, 11(3), 347–369.
Tønnessen, M., et al. (2018). Phenomenology and biosemiotics. Biosemiotics, 11(3), 323–330. https://doi. org/10.1007/s12304-018-9345-8.
Tønnessen, M., Magnus, R., & Brentari, C. (2016). The Biosemiotic Glossary Project: Umwelt. Biosemiotics 9(1): 129–149.

Tuesday, 23 June 2020

Two meetings; two days off

Today I have had two meetings. I attended a meeting related to Centre for gender studies, for which I am chair of the board, and charied the last meeting this Spring of the ph.d. committee.

Yesterday I had a day off, tomorrow too.

Saturday, 20 June 2020

Half day

Today I have had half an article writing day devoted to my phenomenology chapter for Semiotic agency, with some 1.300 words written. Number of writing days this Spring is up to 44.

Friday, 19 June 2020

Today: Two meetings and some grading

Today I have co-graded a bachelor thesis in social work, attended a planning meeting in relation to the 2020 Norwegian Animal Ethics Conference held by Council for animal ethics, and attended a BOA project meeting at UIS (related to external funding).

Yesterday: Work lunch, faculty board meeting, end of term dinner

Yesterday I had a work lunch with fellow members of the program area for research Philosophy and subjectivity at Ostehuset in town, informed about plans for the UIS cognitive lab at the meeting of the board of Faculty of social sciences, and attended an end of term dinner with the faculty leadership group at Villa Skeiane.

Wednesday, 17 June 2020

Half writing day

Today I have had half an article writing day, with some 800 words written on my phenomenology chapter for Semiotic agency. Total number of writing days in 2020 is up to 43,5.

To give guest lecture on environmental ethics at IKS

On November 12th at 12.15-14 I will give a guest lecture on environmental ethics at Department of cultural studies and languages (IKS), Faculty of arts and education, in a Master course within teacher education.

Appointments committee meeting

Today I have attended this Spring´s last regular appointments committee meeting at Faculty of social sciences - virtually.

Energiforskningskonferansen 2020 partially attended

Today I have attended the first couple of hours of Energiforskningskonferansen 2020 (the energy research conference 2020), held by Research Council of Norway - this year in virtual edition. Some 300 people attended.

Member of ISQOLS

To present at virtual version of International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies 18th Annual Conference

Luckily, I have been notified by conference organizers that International Society for Quality-of- Life Studies 18th Annual Conference, which was to be held in physical format in Rotterdam, the Neterlands 25-28th, will be held in various virtual formats. I have communicated to the organizers that I would like to present my accepted paper "Wasted and wasteful growth in the USA" at a live joint-session webinar August 25-28th.

Tuesday, 16 June 2020

Three meetings and a work lunch - on campus

Today I have attended the first all-physical faculty leadership group meeting for three months; had a work lunch / supervision session; watched a digital staff meeting on UIS strategi; and attended a digital meeting in the research administration.

Monday, 15 June 2020

43rd writing day

Today I have had an article writing day - the 43rd this year - with some 1.500 words written on my phenomenology chapter for Semiotic agency. One of the four most productive writing days so far in 2020 by this measure.

Friday, 12 June 2020

1.500 reads for introductory chapter on animal representations

Our chapter "Introduction: The semiotics of animal representations" (co-written by me and Kadri Tüür) has reached 1.500 reads on ResearchGate.

Writing day - 1.400 words written

Today I have had an article writing day with some 5 hours devoted to work on my phenomenology chapter for our book Semiotic agency, with some 1.400 words written, on anti-psychologism and other issues. This is the third highest word count this year for a writing day. Total number of writing days is up to 42 (with more than 30.000 words written altogether).

Thursday, 11 June 2020

A ph.d. defence chaired - and a meeting attended

Today I have chaired a ph.d. defence for the third time. The candidate was Steinar Vee Henriksen, who defended his thesis "Norwegian police training for and use of force". He also gave the trial lecture "Theories and approaches to simulation-based training of critical decision-making at the sharp end". At the end of the day he was a doctor. The committee consisted of Kerstin Eriksson, Mikkel Bøhm and Morten Sommer. Some 35 people attended the digital ph.d. defence.

Later in the day I attended a meeting in the faculty administration related to presentation of research activities on new webpages which are to launch in October.

Wednesday, 10 June 2020

Writing - plans vs. reality

I did not get to have a writing day today - as sometimes happens, due to an overwhelming workload. However, I have reassessed my writing plans for the time leading up to and following directly after my summer holidays. Unfortunately my pet article "Wasted growth" will have to wait some more, until over the summer, for completion. Before the summer holidays I have to prioritise writing projects with agreed deadlines (of which there are three or four depending on how you count, including one chapter with deadline shortly after the summer holidays).

Two meetings, a pick-up and a corona test

Yesterday I attended the faculty leadership group meeting, picked up the outfit of the Dean in preparation of Thursday´s Ph.d. defence which I will chair, took a corona test, and attended the kick-off meeting of a work group established to plan for a cognitive lab at University of Stavanger.

Two meetings

Today I have attended two meetings. First, a planning meeting for this year´s Norwegian animal ethics conference (Dyreetikkonferansen digital edition) - now tentatively titled "Velferd i isolasjonens tid (Welfare in the time of isolation). Then, a test meeting in preparation of tomorrow´s Ph.d. defence, which I will chair.

Tuesday, 9 June 2020

Revision decision for Haaland & Tønnessen article

Our article "“Learning to fly again” – What children in care`s friluftsliv experiences tell us about the guidance they need to experience joyful leisure" has received a revision decision from Child & Youth Services. My ph.d. student Joakim Jiri Haaland is first author, I am second author for the article.

Monday, 8 June 2020

Writing - phenomenology chapter

Today I have had an article writing day with some 800 words written on my phenomenology chapter for our book Semiotic agency (specifically, today I wrote about naturalism, transcendental phenomenology and Husserl´s different conceptions of nature). Number of article writing days in 2020 is up to 41.

Sunday, 7 June 2020

Biosemiotics and business: Transcending anthropocentric notions of economic performance - quote

In his introduction to the anthology Innovation and the arts: The value of humanities studies for business (eds. Piero Formica and John Edmondson, Emerald Publishing 2020), Brian Donnellan in effect cites my chapter in the book, "The true value of "doing well" economically" (p. xiv):
Indeed, the need for us to go beyond current impoverished modes of engagement is identified throughout this collection of papers as a sine qua non if we are to transcend our anthropocentric notions of economic performance. A degree of integration between economics, philosophy and biology is required, with the application of Umwelt theory and biosemiotics indicating a potential way forward.

Friday, 5 June 2020

CRIStin registrations

I have registered a few posts from Spring 2020 at my profile in the Current Research Information System in Norway (6 posts registered by now).

Participation at ministries input meeting on revision of wildlife law on behalf of Council for animal ethics

Today I have represented Norway´s Council for animal ethics in an online input meeting (innspillsmøte) held by Ministry of Agriculture and Food and Ministry of Climate and Environment in relation to the ministries´ planned revision on hunting and capture of wildlife (Viltloven - the wildlife law). I had 5 minutes to present my input on behalf on the council. I will also prepare written feedback to the ministries (to be discussed in Council for animal ethics before it is sent).

Some 50 people attended the input meeting.

Thursday, 4 June 2020

Google scholar: 464 citations

According to my Google Scholar profile I have now been cited 464 times (+18 since April 9th). This includes 25 citations in 2020 (+5 since April 9th). My i10-index is 17 (same as April 9th) and my h-index 12 (same as April 9th).

At campus for first time in 2,5 months; two meetings

Today I went to the University of Stavanger´s Ullandhaug campus for the first time in 2,5 months. By now up to 50% of employees are allowed to be present at any time, but far fewer are normally present, with extensive use of home office still.

I attended a faculty leadership meeting at campus. Later in the day, being back home at my home office, I attended an online inter-faculty meeting related to allocation of recruitment positions.

Half writing day

Today I have had half an article writing day, in part devoted to revision of my article "Anticipating the societal transformation required to solve the environmental crisis in the 21s century", with some 100 words written.

Total number of article days in 2020 is up to 40.

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Appointments committee meeting; Cognitive lab

Today I have participated at two meetings - the appointments committe meeting at Faculty of social sciences, and a meeting in relation to establishment of a Cognitive lab at University of Stavanger.

Peer review

I have this Spring done a peer-review for Visual studies.

Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Half writing day

Today I have had half an article writing day, with some 300 words written on the revised version of my article "Anticipating the societal transformation required to solve the environmental crisis in the 21st century".

Two meetings

Today I have attended two meetings - a meeting with vice rector for education Astrid Eggen and others related to the revised quality system of University of Stavanger, and a meeting in the faculty leadership finalizing wording on the faculty´s strategic focus areas for the next few years.

Monday, 1 June 2020

Abstract for Steffens conference: "Steffens´ ideas about organic meteorology: From the Totalorganismus to planetary health?"

I have today composed the abstract below for my invited lecture at a conference about Henrik Steffens which is (hopefully) to be held at University of Copenhagen October 1-2nd, "“…just as alluring as instructive…” – Henrik Steffens’ Concept of Nature in Science, Humanities and Arts around 1800".
Steffens´ ideas about organic meteorology: From the Totalorganismus to planetary health?  

Morten Tønnessen Professor of philosophy, Department of social studies, University of Stavanger  

As Linda Richter (2019) has recently investigated, in a report to the Prussian state in 1811, Henrik Steffens made the argument that the atmosphere is a living being, and that adopting this perspective could lead to advances in medicine and our understanding of diseases in humans and animals. The context of the commissioned report was the idea – which was widely held at the time – that many diseases were caused or affected by the climate or weather. In another recent article based on her Ph.D., Richter (2020) distinguishes between Semiotics, Physics, and Organics of the weather as three distinct forms of meteorological knowledge in the period 1750–1850 in German-speaking countries, and presents Steffens as a prominent representative of the Organics perspective.  

I will approach Richter´s two articles and Steffens 1811 report from four different angles. First, I will look into in what ways Steffens´ proposal for an organic perspective on meteorology highlights key aspects of his nature view more broadly. This will include reflecting on possible interpretations of his notion of a “grand organism” (Totalorganismus) in the context of ecology. Second, I will discuss how Steffens´ perspective on organic meteorology fares in comparison with the Gaia theory of James Lovelock. Third, I will discuss whether Steffens´ idea that human and animal health and the weather mirror each other has any resemblance with how we think about human ecology and anthropogenic climate change today. Lastly, I will discuss how Steffens´ perspective connects with contemporary (w)holistic notions such as `One health´, `One Welfare´, and `Planetary health´.