Paul Churchland Biography

Paul Churchland (born October 21, 1942) is a philosopher noted for his studies in neurophilosophy and the philosophy of mind. He is Professor Emeritus at the University of California, San Diego, where he held the Valtz Chair of Philosophy and a joint appointment with the Cognitive Science Faculty and the Institute for Neural Computation. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in 1969 under the direction of Wilfrid Sellars. Churchland is the husband of philosopher Patricia Churchland. He is also the father of two children, Mark and Anne Churchland, both of whom are neuroscientists.

Churchland began his professional career as an instructor at the University of Pittsburgh in 1969; he also lectured at the University of Toronto from 1967-69. In 1969, Churchland took a position at the University of Manitoba, where he would teach for fifteen years: as an assistant professor (1969-74) and associate professor (1974-79), and then as a full professor from 1979-1984. Professor Churchland joined the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton in 1982, staying as a member until 1983. He joined the faculty at the University of California, San Diego in 1983, serving as Department Chair from 1986-1990.

Churchland has supervised a number of PhD students, including Matthew J. Brown (now at UT Dallas), P.D. Magnus (now at the University at Albany), Philip Brey (now at the University of Twente).