Peter P Tan - Philosophy Homepage

Hello! I am a Visiting Assistant Professor at Middlebury College.

I work at the intersections of the general philosophy of science with contemporary metaphysics and epistemology. Right now, I'm working on two separate topics.

First, I'm investigating how the components of a scientific metaphysics -- laws of nature, natural kinds, scientific explanation -- should be characterized in cases of causal heterogeneity across the sciences. Second, I'm working on the epistemology of computational methods in science, especially unsupervised deep-learning neural networks that often act as "black boxes". Is the sort of evidence we gain from these "black box" computational methods empirically admissible, and even if so, could human scientists ever be warranted in being scientific realists about what the black boxes tell us about?

I have diverse teaching interests that extend beyond philosophy of science, metaphysics, and epistemology. I'm especially interested in teaching the classical Chinese philosophers, as well as developing creative new ways to teach non-symbolic logic courses for a general student audience.

If you'd like to contact me, please write to