Alan Chalmers

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Alan Francis Chalmers (born 1939) is a British-Australian philosopher of science. He was born in Bristol, England in 1939, and attained a BSc in physics at the University of Bristol, and his MSc in physics from the University of Manchester. His PhD on the electromagnetic theory of J. C. Maxwell was granted by the University of London. Chalmers went to Australia in 1971 and worked for some years at the University of Sydney.

Chalmers was elected a fellow of the Academy of Humanities in 1997. His primary research interest is the philosophy of science and he is author of the best-selling textbook What Is This Thing Called Science? which has been translated into many languages.

He has been a visiting scholar at the Flinders University Philosophy Department since 1999. For the 2007 fall semester he was a visiting professor at the University of Pittsburgh.[1]

Chalmers is an associate professor at the History and Philosophy of Science department of the University of Sydney.[2]


  • Science and Its Fabrication, Open University Press and University of Minnesota Press, 1990, pp. 142+xii. (Translated into French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese and Chinese.)
  • What Is This Thing Called Science?, 3rd revised edition, University of Queensland Press, Hackett, 1999. (Originally published 1976; second edition: 1982.)
  • The Scientist's Atom and the Philosopher's Stone – How Science Succeeded and Philosophy Failed to Gain Knowledge of Atoms, Springer, 2009, pp. 288+xii.


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