Finnur Dellsén receives the Nils Klim Prize 2019 | University of Iceland Skip to main content

Finnur Dellsén receives the Nils Klim Prize 2019

14/03/2019 - 11:27

Finnur Dellsén, associate professor in philosophy at the University of Iceland is this year’s recipient of the Nils Klim Prize. This was announced today, but the prize is awarded annually to Nordic scholars under the age of 35.

The prize is worth NOK 500,000 (approximately EUR 50 000), for outstanding contributions within the arts and humanities, social sciences, law or theology, either within one of the relevant fields alone or through work of an interdisciplinary nature. The Nils Klim Prize appertains to the Holberg Prize at the University in Bergen on behalf of the Norwegian Ministry for Education and Research. Finnur will accept prize at a festive ceremony at the University in Bergen on 5 June.

Complex questions become clear

Finnur Dellsén is an associate professor in philosophy at the University of Iceland. He, furthermore, holds a position of a professor II, part time, at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences. Finnur's research has mainly been focused on epistemology and the philosophy of science.
Tone Sverdrup, the Committee Chair for the Nils Klim Committee, says that Finnur Dellsén is an outstanding and original philosopher. "Despite his young age, he is at the cutting edge of his field, with an impressive list of publications in internationally renowned journals," she says. "Finnur Dellsén writes about highly complex philosophical matters in a clear and concise style. He thoroughly examines the arguments involved and fairly considers alternative accounts of the topic in question," Tone Sverdrup points out. "The committee is impressed by the originality, perceptiveness and precision of his philosophical work.

To live with uncertainty

In 2014, Finnur Dellsén completed his Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a dissertation entitled Epistemology of Science: Acceptance, Explanation, and Realism.  The selection committee states in their review that Finn's research has mainly been focused on epistemology and the philosophy of science. Dellsén pursues a cluster of questions in relation to the epistemic status of scientific realism: the problem of accounting for explanatory rivalry in the context of inferences to the best explanation; the distinction between accepting a scientific theory and believing it; and whether all scientific explanations are causal explanations. 

“Science is about finding the facts, but not all facts are equal,” Dellsén says, explaining his work. “Some facts reveal how things hang together – as an effect hangs together with its causes – and thus allow us to predict, explain, and truly understand the world around us.”  “In my research I have tried to show how and why these facts are special,“ the Laureate explains.  “I have also argued that in order to unveil facts of this kind, we must be prepared to live with the uncertainty that inevitably comes with grand theorizing.”

The Holberg Prize is awarded annually to a scholar who has made outstanding contributions to research in race studies

It was, furthermore, announced today that the Holberg Prize is awarded to British cultural historian Paul Gilroy for his contributions to critical race studies, post-colonialism and related fields. Paul Gilroy is Professor of American and English Literature at King’s College London, and he is one of the most well-known researchers and public intellectuals in the UK today. Professor Gilroy receives the Holberg Prize for his outstanding contributions to a number of academic fields, including cultural studies, critical race studies, sociology, history, anthropology and African-American studies. 

The Holberg Prize is an international research prize awarded annually to a scholar who has made outstanding contributions to research in the arts and humanities, social sciences, law or theology. The Prize is worth NOK 6,000,000 (approx. USD 700,000) and was established by the Norwegian Parliament in 2003. 

Further information can be found at www.holbergprisen.no.


 

Finnur Dellsén