UH-Hilo emeritus professor named AAAS fellow

  • Dr. Ron Amundson

Dr. Ron Amundson, emeritus professor of philosophy at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The award was formally announced in the Nov. 24 issue of the journal Science.


Each year, the AAAS Council elects members for their distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Amundson was honored for his contributions to the philosophy of science and bioethics, particularly the study of evolution and social studies of disability.

Amundson’s book, “The Changing Role of the Embryo in Evolutionary Thought” (2005), is a respected analysis of the changes in evolutionary biology that are taking place under the influence of molecular genetics. Several of his articles about disability have argued that the concept of “normality” was not inferred from biology, but was socially invented.

Amundson came to UH-Hilo in 1978. He taught philosophy courses in theory of knowledge, as well as several courses in the philosophical understandings of various scientific disciplines (anthropology, psychology, linguistics and astronomy). Amundson served as chairman of the Philosophy Department and was a member of the Chancellor’s Committee on Disability Access.


At the UH System level, he served on the UH Research Council and the Systemwide Disability Access Committee. Amundson retired from teaching in 2012.

AAAS is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science (www.sciencemag.org) and other scientific journals. AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes nearly 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million people.