# Symposium on Conceptual Spaces

Location: Prof.-Huber-Pl. 2 (W) LEHRTURM-W401

09.06.2023

Matías Osta-Vélez (Heinrich-Heine-Universität): “From logical form to the form of concepts”

Abstract: Traditionally, analytic philosophy has focused on studying inference by examining only syntactic properties, such as logical form. In this talk, I will present an alternative perspective that emphasizes the role of semantic content in rational inference. Drawing on Sellars' notion of material inference and incorporating ideas from cognitive linguistics, I will demonstrate how semantic relations between extra-logical terms account for a significant portion of the inferential structure of natural language. Furthermore, I will outline a strategy for modeling these types of inferences using conceptual spaces.

Javier Belastegui (MCMP, LMU): ”Consistency, similarity and the construction of concepts in conceptual spaces"

Abstract: Douven and Gärdenfors (Mind and Language 2020) propose a number of criteria for which concepts can be considered to be natural. Starting from these criteria, I will discuss how they can be grounded in economic or information-theoretic principles of cognition and communication. My focus will be on the thesis that concepts are convex regions in conceptual spaces. In particular, I analyze the consequences of constraints on memory and learnability for how natural concepts should look like. I also show that a requirement of a ‘meeting of minds’ for communicative success leads to similar consequences.

Peter Gärdenfors (Lund University): “Naturalness of concepts and the economics of cognition and communication”

The aim of the talk is to provide an explication of the process of conceptual categorization in the framework of conceptual spaces. It uses the polar spaces, introduced by Rumffitt and Mormann to deal with the problem of vagueness. The explication is based on an analogy between similarity (between objects) and consistency (between formulas). Using the properties of the relation of classical logical consistency, a calculus for the construction of concepts is introduced. The rules of the calculus can be used to construct step-by-step all the finite natural concepts in polar spaces, starting from a primitive categorical similarity relation between objects.