“Progress in Medicine”

Bristol, 13-15 April 2010

An interdisciplinary conference on the nature of progress in medicine, combining perspectives from philosophy, history, medical science, and clinical practice.

Conference homepage:


Principal Speakers:

• Derek Bolton (KCL) – “Defining illness in psychiatry and in general medicine”

• Matthew Broome (Warwick) – “Medicine as applied physiology, psychiatry as applied neuroscience”

• Raffaella Campaner and Maria Carla Galavotti (Bologna) – “Evidence and the assessment of causal relations in the health sciences”

• K. Codell Carter (Brigham Young University) – “What progress are we now to expect in medicine?”

• Nancy Cartwright (LSE and UC San Diego) – “The long road from ‘it works somewhere’ to ‘it will work for us’”

• Sir Iain Chalmers (UK Cochrane Centre) and Ulrich Tröhler (Bern) – “Medical historical textbooks and review articles fail to take account of progress in historical research”

• Andrew Cunningham (Cambridge) – “The origins of the concept of progress in medicine, ca. 16th and 17th centuries”

• Bill Fulford (Warwick) – “Neuroscience and values: from theory to practice in mental health”

• Sander Greenland (UC Los Angeles) – “How much progress in medicine is illusory?”

• Ilana Löwy (Inserm, CNRS, Paris-Sud 11) – Prenatal diagnosis: Does the improvement of diagnostic techniques constitute progress?”

• Mark Parascandola (U.S. National Institutes of Health) – “Epistemic risk: Empirical science and the fear of being wrong”

• John Pickstone (Manchester) – tba

• David Wootton (York) – “Progress in science and medicine—Real or illusory?”

• Michael Worboys (Manchester) – “Chlamydia: A disease without a history”

• John Worrall (LSE) – “Evidence in medicine: getting back to the Hill top”

Full list of speakers and papers:


Registration now open:


Email: <[email protected]>