My goal is to write a research project to obtain a VENI grant. The next deadline will probably be in early January 2012.

When writing the application for my current research project, I tried to build on what I had already done in my PhD and expand my scope chronologically and thematically from there. So I expanded it from Husserl to the entire School of Brentano (Franz Brentano, Carl Stumpf, Alexius Meinong, Kazimierz Twardowski, Konrad Zindler, Alois Höfler, Anton Marty, Christian von Ehrenfels, etc.) and chronologically from just the last decade of the 19th century to the second half of the 19th century and the beginnings of the 20th. Now the plan is again to do something similar: encompass more topics and authors, in a widening circle, building on what I know.

The general idea would be to broaden the scope chronologically, ranging from post-idealism to the early analytics, and thematically, adding philosophy of science and epistemology to philosophy of logic and mathematics. As the central topic, I’d like to examine the genesis of the idea of philosophy as a science, the idea of a founding science and the role of the formal sciences therein, and see in how far all this might be connected to the aristotelian renaissance in the 19th century. This would connect very well to topics in Husserl (e.g. his “Philosophy as a Rigorous Science”, 1911) and in Brentano (“Vera philosophiae methodus nulla alia nisi scientiae naturalis est“: “The true method of philosophy is none other than that of the natural sciences”)

What this project needs right now, however, is more focus. It is too general and too ambitious. The actual research question must be more concrete and answerable in 3-4 years. I need to refine and reformulate the basic idea in such a way that it can be adequately presented in approximately 300 ww: more or less the length of this blog post.