John Beatty teaches history and philosophy of science, and social and political philosophy, in the Department of Philosophy at the University of British Columbia.
His research focuses on the theoretical foundations, methodology, and socio-political dimensions of genetics and evolutionary biology (he is one of many UBC faculty specializing in history and philosophy of science, and science and technology studies).
His current research projects concern, more specifically, 1) the distinction between “history” and “science,” and the respects in which evolutionary biology is as much like former as it is like the latter, 2) the relationships between biology and “the state,” from the Manhattan Project to the Human Genome Project, and 3) the theological dimensions of the Darwinian revolution (e.g., as reflected in the wonderful evolutionary parable, Water Babies).
He is a coauthor of The Empire of Chance: How Probability Changed Science and Everyday Life (Cambridge University Press). He co-directs the annual MBL Seminar in the History of Biology. He is also a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and recently chaired the AAAS Section on History and Philosophy of Science.