Peter Takacs

Peter Takacs

Peter Takacs is a member of the Charles Perkins Centre and the Department of Philosophy at the University of Sydney. His current research in the Theory and Method in Biosciences group is in philosophy of biology and the philosophy of evolutionary biomedicine, with special emphasis on the conceptual challenges that arise when attempting to determine the ontology of individuals and identify biological (mal)function given “DEEP” (Developmental, Evolutionary, Ecological, and Physiological) feedbacks. His past research focused on the metaphysical, epistemological (i.e., empirical as well as formal approaches), and normative issues that arise when examining the notion of fitness, explanations of major evolutionary transitions such as cooperation, how sophisticated evolutionary reasoning changes prevailing assumptions about health, and whether the life sciences currently require a so-called “New Synthesis.” His research is funded by the Australian Research Council project ‘A Philosophy of Medicine for the 21st Century’ (#FL170100160) and a subaward grant for ‘Evolutionary Transitions in Individuality: From Ecology to Teleonomy’ under the John Templeton Foundation’s “Agency, Directionality and Function: Foundations for a Science of Purpose” initiative (#62220).






Takacs, P., & Bourrat, P. (2022). The arithmetic mean of what? A Cautionary Tale about the Use of the Geometric Mean as a Measure of Fitness. Biology & Philosophy, 37(2), 12. Download


Takacs, P., & Bourrat, P. (2021). Fitness: static or dynamic? European Journal for Philosophy of Science, 11(4), 112. Download
Christie, J. R., Brusse, C., Bourrat, P., Takacs, P., & Griffiths, P. E. (2021). Target Article: Do Proper Functions Explain the Existence of Traits? Australasian Philosophical Review. Download
Doulcier, G., Takacs, P., & Bourrat, P. (2021). Taming fitness: Organism-environment interdependencies preclude long-term fitness forecasting. BioEssays, 43(1), 2000157.