Stephan received a PhD in Biochemistry from the ETH Zürich in 2006 and an MSc in Philosophy of Science from the LSE in October 2010. In March 2011, he joined the (now closed) BIOS centre at LSE as a visiting research fellow. Since January 2012, Stephan is a visiting research fellow at the CPNSS.
Dates of visit: tba
From promise to production: the role of functional modules in synthetic biology
Synthetic biology is an emerging discipline that aims to make biology ‘easier to engineer’: the goal is to create new biological systems with specific characteristics by forward-engineering using defined genetic ‘parts’.
During the next two years, Stephan will study how biological parts are defined and constructed through experimental practices in synthetic biology laboratories. This work will be performed in close collaboration with synthetic biologists and social scientists at the Centre for Synthetic Biology and Innovation (CSynBI) at Imperial and King’s College, London. The aim is to analyse how scientists are trying to make a reductionist approach to biology work and to further our understanding of how knowledge is generated in the modern life sciences.
Besides his work on synthetic biology, Stephan is also interested in the philosophy of experimentation. He is particularly interested in the epistemic significance of the different forms of experimental practices used within the life sciences.