Visiting Professors



Matteo Valleriani (October 2017) is senior research scholar at Dept. 1 of the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science. In his research, he investigates the process of the emergence of scientific knowledge in relation to its practical, social, and institutional dimensions. In this frame, and in reference to the early modern period, his major projects have been dedicated to Galileo’s science (Galileo Engineer, Springer, 2010) and to Nicolò Tartaglia’s ballistics (Metallurgy, Ballistics and Epistemic Instruments: The “Nova Scientia” of Nicolò Tartaglia. A New Edition, Edition Open Access, 2013). Affliated to the Excellence Cluster Topoi, he investigated the emergence of hydromechanics in classical antiquity (Hydrostatics and Pneumatics in Antiquity, in G. L. Irby (ed.), A Companion to Science, Technology, and Medicine in Ancient Greece and Rome, Wiley-Blackwell, 2016). Matteo Valleriani worked on the processes of the appropriation of ancient science during the early modern period. He edited an issue of Nuncius (Appropriation and Transformation of Ancient Science, Nuncius, 29, 2014), which contains his final contribution to the study of the appropriation of ancient pneumatics through early modern garden technology (Ancient Pneumatics Transformed During the Early Modern Period, Nuncius, 29, 2014, 127–174: also: His current major project is concerned with the evolution of the scientific knowledge system in Europe from the thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries that revolved around cosmological knowledge. In the frame of digital humanities, Matteo Valleriani implements methods of network analysis in history writing.

At the IRH-ICUB Matteo Valleriani will run a project that focuses on images of science of epistemic vehicles and specifically on cosmology astrology, medicine, pharmacology, alchemy and anatomy between the fourteenths and the sixteenth century. Together with other members of the IRH-ICUB, Matteo Valleriani will also organize and execute a masterclass dedicated to Galileo’s science and method as well as on their impact.



Gabriel Sandu (September – October 2016) born in Bukarest, 1954, arrived in Helsinki in the late 70s after taking a degree in economics at the Academy of Economic Studies of Bucharest. He studied philosophy at the University of Helsinki where he also took his doctoral degree with Jaakko Hintikka. He became professor of theoretical philosophy at the same university in 1998. During 2004-2008 he was Directeur de recherches at CNRS  (IHPST/Paris 1/Ecole Normale Supérieure) and in 2008 he was appointed Professeur des Universités, at Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne. At present he is the head of theoretical philosophy of the Department of Philosophy, History, Culture and Art Studies of the University of Helsinki. Gabriel Sandu worked with Jaakko Hintikka on applications of game-theory to natural language phenomena. Starting with late 80s they developed a system of logic (IF logic), which expresses certain relations of dependence and independence between quantifiers and connectives that cannot be expressed by ordinary first-order logic. Apart from their greater expressive power, IF languages also allow for an interesting combination between truth-conditional and probabilistic interpretations.

foto giosan

Liviu Giosan (October 2016 – September 2017) is a geoscientist with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (USA) and teaches in the Massachussets Institute of Technology/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in Oceanography/ Applied Ocean Science and Engineering. His current research addresses the interactions between climate, landscapes and humans. His work published in leading science journals and reported in the international media includes contributions on drowning river deltas under human-induced climate changes; the Black Sea deluge hypothesis, or the so-called “Noah’s Flood”; the long term impact of deforestation on the Black Sea ecosystem; and the collapse of the ancient urban Indus Valley Civilization on the Indian Subcontinent. At ICUB, Liviu Giosan will run a project dedicated to ‘Understanding the Anthropocene in Romania’ that seeks to explore the long history of Nature-Humans interactions on the Romanian territory and neighboring regions through interdisciplinary collaborations involving physical sciences and humanities.


Massimo Leone (January – February 2017) is Professor of Semiotics, Cultural Semiotics, and Visual Semiotics at the Department of Philosophy, University of Turin, Italy. He graduated in Communication Studies from the University of Siena, and holds a DEA in History and Semiotics of Texts and Documents from Paris VII, an MPhil in Word and Image Studies from Trinity College Dublin, a PhD in Religious Studies from the Sorbonne, and a PhD in Art History from the University of Fribourg (CH). His work focuses on the role of religion in modern and contemporary cultures. Massimo Leone has single-authored seven books, edited thirty collective volumes, and published more than three hundred articles in semiotics and religious studies. He has lectured in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America. He is the chief editor of Lexia, the Semiotic Journal of the Center for Interdisciplinary Research on Communication, University of Turin, Italy, and editor of the book series “I Saggi di Lexia” (Rome: Aracne) and “Semiotics of Religion” (Berlin and Boston: Walter de Gruyter). He directs the MA Program in Communication Studies at the University of Turin, Italy.


Martin Maiden (January – February 2017) is Professor of the Romance Languages at Oxford, a Fellow of Trinity College, Oxford (since 1996), and Director of the Oxford Research Centre for Romance Linguistics (since 2007). He has been a Fellow of the British Academy since 2003. He studied at Cambridge University (PhD. in Linguistics 1987). From 1982-1989 he taught Italian at Bath University, and from 1989-1996 Romance Philology at Cambridge University. He was Vice-President of the Società Linguistica Italiana (2003-2004). He holds an honorary doctorate from the University of Bucharest (2013). In 2014 he was appointed ‘Commander’ in the ‘National Order for “Faithful Service”’ of Romania. He is an editor of, and contributor to, The Cambridge History of the Romance Languages (2011/2013) and The Oxford Guide to the Romance Languages (2016). His particular research interests are in Italian and Romanian linguistics and dialectology, historical linguistics, and morphology. His lectures in Bucharest will be entitled Lecții de morfologie istorică romanică și românească.


Thomas J. Cousineau (May 2017) Professor of English (Emeritus) at Washington College and  former  Fulbright Scholar in American Studies at the University of Bucharest, is the author of After the Final No: Samuel Beckett’s Trilogy, Waiting for Godot: Form in Movement, Ritual Unbound: Reading Sacrifice in Modernist Fiction, Three-Part Inventions: The Novels of Thomas Bernhard, and editor of “Beckett in France,” a special issue of the Journal of Beckett Studies.  His most recent book,  An Unwritten Novel: Fernando Pessoa’s The Book of Disquiet, received an “Outstanding Title” citation from the American Library Association. A longtime member of the Colloquium on Violence and Religion, a group of scholars that explores and expands the cultural critic René Girard’s ideas on mimetic desire and the practice of scapegoating, he has recently become intrigued by the convergences between Girard’s work and that of Mircea Eliade (particularly the latter’s commentaries on the legend of Master Manole) and is currently writing a book to be titled The Séance of Reading Uncanny Designs in Modernist Writing that grows out of this interest.  The website for his project is available at


Dimitris Michalopoulos (May 2017) Was born in Athens in 1952. He obtained his Ph.D. in History (1978), at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris, France. From 1982 to 1994 he taught Diplomatic History and Balkan Issues at the Law School of the University of Salonica as an assistant professor. During the years 1989 – 1997 he taught Naval and European History at the Naval War College of Greece; and from  1990 to 2000 he was the Director of the Museum of the City of Athens.  Now he is an academic cooperator with the Institute of Hellenic Maritime History. His publications include: Vie politique en Grèce pendant les années 1862 – 1869 (Athens University Press, 1981 [in French]). Greece and Albania, 1923 – 1928 (Salonica: Parateretes, 1986 [in Greek]). Greece and Turkey, 1950 – 1959. The lost rapprochement (Athens: Roés, 1989 [in Greek]). The Greek National Schism (Athens: Trochalia, 1997 [in Greek]). Attitudes parallèles. Éleuthérios Vénisélos et Take Ionescu dans la Grande Guerre (Athens: “Eleutherios Veniselos” Historical Institute, 2004 [in French]; and second edition, in French too, in 2005). Arsaki. La vie d’un home d’État (Bucharest: Editura Academiei Române, 2008 [in French]). Les Argonautes (Paris: Dualpha, 2013). The Evolution of the Hellenic Mercantile Marine through the Ages (The Piraeus: Institute of Hellenic Maritime History, 2014 [in Greek and English]). La révolution grecque de 1862 et l’insurrection crétoise de 1866. Conséquences politiques et complications diplomatiques, Istanbul: Les éditions Isis, 2016. Homer’s Odyssey beyond the Myths (The Piraeus: Institute of Hellenic Mercantile Marine, 2016).

2015 – 2016


Peter Anstey (March – July 2016) is ARC Future Fellow and Professor of Philosophy at the University of Sydney. In 2016 he will be Visiting Professor in Residence at the Institute for Research in the Humanities, University of Bucharest from March to July. He specializes in early modern philosophy with a special focus on John Locke. His current ARC-funded research project is on ‘The nature and status of principles in early modern philosophy’. He is author of John Locke and Natural Philosophy, Oxford, 2011 and editor of The Oxford Handbook of British Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century, Oxford, 2013.

2014 – 2015

Cristina Ionescu (May – June 2015) is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Catholic University of America, Washington, USA. Her area of specialization is the ancient philosophy. She published Plato’s Meno: An Interpretation (Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007), and a number of articles, such as: “Recollection and the Method of Collection and Division in the Phaedrus.” Journal of Philosophical Research (forthcoming); “Dialectical Method and the Structure of Reality in the Timaeus.” Ancient Philosophy 30 (2010): 299–318; “Hybrid Varieties of Pleasure and the Complex Case of the Pleasures of Learning in Plato’s Philebus.” Dialogue47 (2008): 1–23. “The Unity of the Philebus: Metaphysical Assumptions of the Good Human Life.”Ancient Philosophy 27 (2007): 55–75; “The Transition from the Lower to the Higher Mysteries of Love in Plato’s Symposium.” Dialogue 46 (2007): 27–42. Her current research focuses mainly on metaphysical themes in Plato’s late dialogues. In Bucharest, Cristina Ionescu will give lectures on Plato’s Statesman at the Masterclass “Plato and Platonism” (May-June 2015).

Edward Slowik (May 2015) is Professor ined2 Philosophy at Winona State University, Winona, MN, USA. His area of specialization is the history and philosophy of science, with emphasis on the philosophy of space and time and physics in the Early Modern period. He has published Cartesian Spacetime (Kluwer, 2002), and many articles. He is currently working on a manuscript that explores alternative conceptions of the ontology of space that lie outside the traditional substantivalist and relationist categories. In Bucharest, Edward Slowik will participate at the Masterclass “The Mathematization of natural philosophy in the Early Modern period” and at the Workshop “Natural history, mathematics, and metaphysics in the seventeenth century”(May 2015).