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Numbers and Truth

Numbers and truth - the philosophy and mathematics of arithmetic and truth
Gothenburg, Sweden, October 19-21, 2012

We are pleased to announce that the conference ‘Numbers and truth - the philosophy and mathematics of arithmetic and truth’ ( will be held at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, on October 19-21, 2012. Its main objective is to permit an exchange of ideas between truth theorists, philosophers and mathematicians interested in the foundations of mathematics. It will give the researchers an opportunity both to present technical results and to diagnose their philosophical significance.

General description

Natural numbers belong to the most commonly known mathematical entities and are studied and discussed from various angles. Philosophers, mathematicians, cognitive scientists, computer scientists among others conduct research having for its aim a deeper understanding of these objects. The present conference “Numbers and truth” will contribute to these efforts and bring together researchers and traditions from all these areas to construct common ground for new research.
Within recent philosophy of mathematics a couple of competitive philosophical schools came to the foreground; importantly, structuralism and neo-Fregeanism. Both of them espouse realism about mathematical objects: these objects exist independently of our minds. In addition, both espouse realism about truth: arithmetical sentences have objective truth values. In this context a natural question arises whether theories of arithmetical truth provide us a better understanding of what is true of natural numbers, and in consequence, of what natural numbers are. What is the relation between a choice of a particular conception of arithmetical truth and one’s overall standpoint in the philosophy of mathematics, or maybe even one’s preferred way of doing mathematics? On a general level, the aim of the conference is to address issues of this sort. This will be achieved by bringing together both the acknowledged experts and outstanding younger researchers, in order to facilitate discussion between philosophers of mathematics, truth theorists and mathematicians.

The conference will contain 10 invited and 4 contributed talks.

The invited speakers who have confirmed their participation are (in alphabetic order):
Martin Fischer (Munich)
Volker Halbach (Oxford)
Leon Horsten (Bristol)
Richard Kaye (Birmingham)
Juliette Kennedy (Helsinki)
Roman Kossak (New York)
Rafal Urbaniak (Gdansk/Ghent)
Albert Visser (Utrecht)
Sean Walsh (London/Irvine)
Konrad Zdanowski (Warsaw)

Submissions Details

We invite submissions presenting novel contributions to the area of philosophy of mathematics, arithmetic together with its meta-mathematics and model theory, and formal theory of truth. Both philosophical and technical submissions are welcome; especially ones contributing to the discussion of how truth in mathematics should be properly explained.

Extended abstracts of 3-4 pages should be emailed as attached pdf files to the address Abstracts for submission should be prepared for double-blind reviewing, please remove names and affiliations, and any other identifying material. Contact details should be given separately. Presentations should not exceed 45 minutes, including discussion time. The deadline for submitting extended abstracts is August 1, 2012.

The organizers will cover the cost of accommodation and dinners for all contributed speakers.

Important Dates:

Submission deadline: August 1, 2012
Notification of acceptance: August 31, 2012
Conference: October 19-21, 2012

Conference Website:

Organizers: Fredrik Engström (Gothenburg), Cezary Cieśliński (Warsaw), and Paula Quinon (Lund)

Sponsors: Wenner-Gren Foundations and the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science, University of Gothenburg.

 Photo of Mount Akka / Àhkka massif seen from the high plateau Maukojaureh north-east of it by Tobias Radeskog / CC BY 3.0.