History of ABFHiB's establishment

During the Third Meeting of Philosophy and History of Science of the Southern Cone, promoted by AFHIC (Association of Philosophy and History of Science of the Southern Cone) at Águas de Lindóia, SP, in 2002, the establishment of Thematic Work Groups was proposed. Several participants of the referred congress who had been dedicating their work to the research of history and philosophy of life sciences started organizing at that moment. During a conversation between professors Waldir Stefano (Mackenzie Presbyterian University) and Gustavo Caponi (Federal University of Santa Catarina), the idea of creating a specific event of Philosophy and History of Biology arose.

Professors Waldir Stefano and Arlete Stucchi (Mackenzie Presbyterian University) got enthusiastic with the idea and, with support from Professor Luiz Carlos Salomão (deceased in 2006) and from the Rectory of Mackenzie Presbyterian University, effectively organized the I Meeting of Philosophy and History of Biology, which happened from August 22 to 23, 2003, at the referred University. Since this first event, the initiative ocurred with financial support from Mackenzie Research Fund (Mack Research).

The objective of that Meeting was fostering debate around epistemological questions of Biology throughout its development as a science. This way, having in mind the absence of discussion forums at the Brazilian scenario, in this field, the meeting aimed to stimulate interdisciplinary debates among researchers, teachers and students.

The initiative had its continuity over the following years with other events, all of them taking place at the Mackenzie Presbyterian University:

  • II Meeting of Philosophy and History of Biology, on the 20th and 21st of August, 2004
  • III Meeting of Philosophy and History of Biology, on the 19th and 20th of August, 2005
  • IV Meeting of Philosophy and History of Biology, from 17th to 19th of August, 2006

Since the first of these congresses, meetings have ocurred with participation of researchers from several Brazilian States. Since the second meeting, participation of international guests has taken place:

  • Pablo Lorenzano, from University of Quilmes, Argentina
  • Marc J. Ratcliff, from University of Genève, Switzerland
  • Gisela Lamas, from National University of La Plata, Argentina
  • Vicente Dressino, from National University of La Plata, Argentina
  • Palmira Fontes da Costa, from New University of Lisbon, Portugal

The Meetings have counted with increasing participation of researchers and students from various institutions, what has shown the existence of a strong interest for the field and the importance of a place for talks and presentations. All the events counted with strong support from Mack Research and the 4th one also had the support from FAPESP (São Paulo Research Foundation).

While these Meetings have consolidated, amplified and stimulated an always-stronger interaction among researchers in the field, a proposition of creating an association able to congregate philosophy and history of biology researchers took place.

During the planning for the IV Meeting, the organizer commission largely publicized the establishment of this new association, sending messages to a big number of Brazilian researchers of philosophy and history of biology (regardless their participation in previous Meetings). The same commission developed a draft of bylaws, which circulated among the interested persons and, after going through an analysis carried by Solicitor Edgard Jeronimo Dempsey, chosen for advising the association, has been submitted to the persons present at the occasion and approved by the assembly of establishment of ABFHiB, on August 17th, 2006. Shortly next, the first Governing Board and the first Association’s Council Members were elected.

First Governing Board of ABFHiB (from August, 2006, to August, 2009):

  • President: Lilian Al-Chueyr Pereira Martins (Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo)
  • Vice-President: Gustavo Andrés Caponi (Federal University of Santa Catarina)
  • Secretary: Waldir Stefano (Mackenzie Presbyterian University)
  • Treasurer: Maria Elice Brzezinski Prestes (University of São Paulo)

Council (from August, 2006, to August, 2009):


  • Aldo Mellender de Araújo (Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul)
  • Anna Carolina Krebs Pereira Regner (University of the Sinos Valley)
  • Charbel Niño El-Hani (Federal University of Bahia)
  • Nelio M. V. Bizzo (University of São Paulo)