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Conference in French: Could plasticity become a main concept of theoretical and mathematical biology?

The conference will be presented by Dominique Lambert, professor at the Facultés Universitaires Notre Dame de Namur, Belgium (

7 September 2015 - 7 September 2015

Title: Is it possible to give some meaning to a theoretical or mathematical biology?
Date: September 7, 2015
Time: 17:00
Where: Maison de l'AX, rue Descartes 5, 75005 Paris, France

Is it possible to give some meaning to a theoretical or mathematical biology? This question asks for a deep epistemological study. And the latter is connected with important debates concerning the existence of general (fundamental) laws in biology and the difference between physics and biology. If a theoretical (or mathematical) biology has rigorous foundations, it remains to find its fundamental concepts. After having tackled the problem of the epistemological status of theoretical or mathematical life sciences we will study the status of a concept of plasticity and the place it could occupy in the framework of these sciences.

Some references :
D. LAMBERT, “Plasticité: essai de definition et enjeux philosophiques d’un concept biologique”, Cahier Philosophique d’Afrique, n°5, 2007, pp. 49-72.
D. LAMBERT, “Quelques réflexions sur la mathématisation de la biologie”, Revue des Questions Scientifiques, 178 (2007) 33-66 (numéro special, J. Vandenhaute, D. Lambert, M. Vidal, Ch. De Duve, “Qu’est-ce que la vie”).
D. LAMBERT, “Readings of Biological Plasticity” in Nauka-Wiara. Rola Filozofii (Marek Slomka, redaktor tomu), Lublin, Wydawnictwo KUL, 2009, Filozofia Przyrody I Nauk Przyrodniczych 1, pp. 27-43.
D. LAMBERT, “Plasticité: lectures blondéliennes d’un concept biologique”, Angelicum 86 (2009) 115-135.
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D. LAMBERT, “The biological and anthropological meaning of plasticity” in Human Fragility: an interdisciplinary question (edited by A. Bagood), Dudweiler, Pirrot-Verlag (Petrus Borne Zentrum, Tholey), pp. 8-17.
D. LAMBERT, “Some epistemological questions concerning the application of Mathematics in Evolution Theory” in Proceedings of international conference “Biological Evolution. Facts and Theories. A critical appraisal 150 years after “The Origin of Species”, Roma, 3/7-03-09 (G. Auletta, M. Leclerc, R.A. Martinez, eds), Roma, Gregorian and Biblical Press, 2011, Analecta Gregoriana 312, pp. 347-357.

D. LAMBERT, R. REZSÖHAZY, Comment les pattes viennent au serpent? Essai sur l’étonnante plasticité du vivant, Flammarion, 2005, Nouvelle Bibliothèque Scientifique (new edition: Flammarion, 2007, Collection “Champs”, n°750).


biology, mathematical structure