Jan Baedke is a Junior Professor at the Department of Philosophy I, Ruhr University Bochum. His research interests include the history and philosophy of the life sciences (especially biology), and philosophical anthropology. Currently he is PI of the German Research Foundation (DFG) funded research group The Return of the Organism in the Biosciences: Theoretical, Historical, and Social Dimensions. It investigates the conceptual, methodological and anthropological challenges going along with the current comeback of the concept of organism in the bio- and biomedical sciences. The group combines philosophical, historical and sociological approaches to study biological individuality, agency, organism-environment boundaries, and the concept of environment. Other research interests concern theoretical change in evolutionary biology (especially related to the ‘Extended Evolutionary Synthesis’), anthropological issues in the biosciences and the role of the visual in the sciences. Besides that he is working on scientific explanation and current trends towards commodification in the sciences (for example, as a member of the Global Young Faculty, Foundation Mercator, 2015-17). Since 2017 he is the book review editor of the ‘Journal for General Philosophy of Science.’
His recent book Above the Gene, Beyond Biology: Toward a Philosophy of Epigenetics (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018) explores how biologists in the field of epigenetics investigate and explain living systems. It offers discussions of epigenetic concepts, explanations, and methodologies to better understand the current ‘epigenetic turn’ in the biosciences.