Assist. Prof. Frank Zenker

Ph.D., University of Hamburg, DE

+90 (212) 359 7384 / JF521

Research Interests: 

Philosophy of Science, Social Epistemology, Cognitive Science.

Research Projects: 

Completed TUBITAK projects:

Years: 2019 - 2022
Project title: Models, Theories, Research Programs

Completed BAP projects:

Years: 2021 - 2022
Project title: Theory construction in the behavioral sciences


Courses taught (selected):

Logic I, Philosophy of Science, Meta Analysis, Scientific Theories


Updated on July 28, 2022.



  1. Witte, E. H., & Zenker, F. (2021, December 14). The t-test, resource pooling, and psi: why the minimum sample size counts towards theoretical progress in behavioral science. Pre-print,
  2. Witte, E. H., & Zenker, F. (2021, December 12). Three aspects of an empirical effect: statistical, theoretical, and practical aspect. Pre-print,
  3. Zenker, F., & Witte, E. H. (2021, December 8). The case for default point-H1-hypotheses in behavioral science: a theory-construction perspective. Pre-print,
  4. Witte, E. H., & Zenker, F. (2021, October 22). Interpreting published effect sizes in behavioral science: a thought-experiment. Pre-print,
  5. Witte, E. H., Stanciu, A., & Zenker, F. (2020, October 28). A simple measure for the empirical adequacy of a theoretical construct. Pre-print,



Authored Books

  1. Zenker, F. (2009). Ceteris Paribus in Conservative Belief Revision. On the Role of Minimal Change in Rational Theory Development (Ph.D. Thesis, University of Hamburg). Berlin: Peter Lang (ISBN 978-3-631-57283-2).
  2. Zenker, F. (2002). The Etymological Argument: Fallacy or Sound Move? (MA Thesis, University of Amsterdam). Munich: GRIN Publishing GmbH (ISBN 978-3-638-14401-8).


Edited Books

  1. Kaipainen, M.; Zenker, F.; Hautamäki, A.; and Gärdenfors, P. (eds.) (2019). Conceptual Spaces: Elaborations and Applications (Synthese Library, Vol. 405). Dordrecht: Springer (ISBN 978-3-030-12799-2).
  2. Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (eds.) (2015). Applications of Conceptual Spaces: The Case for Geometric Knowledge Representation (Synthese Library, Vol. 359). Dordrecht: Springer (ISBN 978-3-319-15020-8).
  3. Zenker, F. (ed.) (2013). Bayesian Argumentation: The Practical Side of Probability (Synthese Library, Vol. 362). Dordrecht: Springer (ISBN 978-94-007-5356-3).


Edited Proceedings

  1. Zenker, F. (ed.) (2012). Argumentation: Cognition and Community (Proceedings of the 9th International Conference of the Ontario Society for the Study of Argumentation, May 2011). University of Windsor, ON, Canada (ISBN 978-0-920233-66-5).


Edited Journal Issues

  1. Laar, J.A. van, & Zenker, F. (2022). Norms of Public Argumentation. Special Issue of Argumentation (ISBN 1425-3305) (in preparation).
  2. Zenker, F. (2018). Reasoning, Argumentation, and Critical Thinking Instruction. Special Issue of Topoi, 37 (1) (ISSN 0167-7411).
  3. Zenker, F., & Proietti, C. (2014). Social Dynamics and Collective Rationality. Special Issue of Synthese, 191 (ISSN 0039-7857).
  4. Andreas, H., & Zenker, F. (2014). Perspectives on Structuralism. Special Issue of Erkenntnis, 79 (8) (ISSN 0156-0106).
  5. Zenker, F. (2011). Selected Papers: 13th Biannual Argumentation Conference, March 2010, Wake Forest University, N.C., USA. Cogency 3(1) (ISSN 0718-8285).


Journal Articles (* indicates peer review)

  1. Yu, S., & Zenker, F. (2022). Identifying linked and convergent argument structures: a problem unsolved. Informal Logic (ISSN 0824-2577) (forthcoming).* (Q1)
  2. Zenker, F. & Yu, S. (2022). Authority argument schemes, authority types, and critical questions. Argumentation (ISBN 1425-3305) (forthcoming).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  3. Li, Z., & Zenker, F. (2021). Newcomb’s problem isn’t a choice dilemma. Synthese 199, 5125–5143 (ISSN 0039-7857).* (Q1 AHCI SSCI)
  4. Wang, B., & Zenker, F. (2020). Slippery slope arguments in legal context: towards argumentative patterns. Argumentation, 35(4), 581-601 (ISBN 1425-3305).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  5. Yu, S., and Zenker, F. (2020). Schemes, critical questions, and complete argument evaluation. Argumentation, 34(4), 469-498 (ISBN 1425-3305).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  6. Zenker, F.; Dahlman, C.; Sikström, S.; Wahlberg, L.; and Sarvar, F. (2020). Generalization in Legal Argumentation. Journal of Forensic Psychology: Research and Practice, 20(1), 80-99 (ISSN: 2473-2850).* (SSCI)
  7. Zenker, F. (2019). From stories—via arguments, scenarios, and cases—to probabilities (Commentary). Topics in Cognitive Science, 12(4),1219-1223 (ISSN: 1756-8765).* (Q1 SSCI)
  8. Yu, S., and Zenker, F. (2019). A dialectical view on conduction: Reasons, warrants, and normal suasory inclinations. Informal Logic, 39(1), 32-69 (ISSN 0824-2577).* (Q1)
  9. Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2018). Data replication matters, replicated hypothesis-corroboration counts. (Commentary on “Making Replication Mainstream” by Rolf A. Zwaan, Alexander Etz, Richard E., Lucas, and M. Brent Donnellan). Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 41, e120 (ISSN: 0140-525X).* (SSCI)
  10. Krefeld-Schwalb, A; Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2018). Hypothesis-testing demands trustworthy data—a simulation approach to statistical inference advocating the research program strategy. Frontiers in Psychology, 9, 460 (ISSN 1664-1078).* (Q1 SSCI)
  11. Zenker, F. (2018). Reasoning, argumentation, and critical thinking instruction (Editor’s introduction). Topoi, 37(1), 91–92 (ISSN 0167-7411). (Q1 AHCI)
  12. Zenker, F.; Dahlman, C.; Bååth, R., and Sarwar, F. (2018). Reasons pro et contra as a debiasing technique in legal contexts. Psychological Reports, 121(3), 511–526 (ISSN 0033-2941).* (Q2)
  13. Godden, D., and Zenker, F. (2018). A probabilistic analysis of argument cogency. Synthese, 195(4), 1715–1740 (ISSN 0039-7857).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  14. Zenker, F. (2018). Logic, Reasoning, Argumentation: Insights from the Wild. Logic and Logical Philosophy, 27, 421–451 (ISBN 1425-3305).* (Q1)
  15. Yu, S., and Zenker, F. (2017). Peirce knew why abduction isn’t IBE—A scheme and critical questions for abductive argument. Argumentation (ISSN 0920-427X, online first).*
  16. Xiong, M., and Zenker, F. (2017). Legal facts in argumentation-based litigation games. Argumentation (ISSN 0920-427X, online first).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  17. Masterton, G., Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (2017). Using conceptual spaces to exhibit continuity through scientific theory change. European Journal for Philosophy of Science, 7(1), 127–150 (ISSN 1879-4912).* (Q1 AHCI)
  18. Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2017b). From discovery to justification. Outline of an ideal research program in empirical psychology. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 1847 (ISSN 1664-1078).* (Q1 SSCI)
  19. Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2017a). Extending a multilab preregistered replication of the ego-depletion effect to a research program. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 39(1), 7480 (ISSN 0197-3533).* (Q2)
  20. Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (2016). Continuity of theory structure: a conceptual spaces approach. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, 30(4), 343–360 (ISSN 0269-8595).* (Q2 AHCI)
  21. Dahlman, C., Zenker, F., and Sarvar, F. (2016). Miss rate neglect in legal evidence. Law, Probability & Risk, 15(4), 239–250 (ISSN 1470-8396).* (Q2)
  22. Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2016b). Beyond schools—reply to Marsman, Ly & Wagenmakers. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 38(6), 313317 (ISSN 0197-3533).* (Q2)
  23. Witte, E.H., and Zenker, F. (2016a). Reconstructing recent work on macro-social stress as a research program. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 38(6), 301–307 (ISSN 0197-3533).* (Q2)
  24. Jacot, J., Genot, E., and Zenker, F. (2016). From reasonable preferences, via argumentation, to logic. Journal of Applied Logic, 18, 105–128 (ISSN 1570-8683).*
  25. Zenker, F. (2016). Having knowledge from multiple testimonies: Reply to Aviezer Tucker’s “The generation of knowledge from multiple testimonies.” Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective, 5 (1), 52–55 (open access,
  26. Smid, G., and Zenker, F. (2015). Three logicians walk into a bar. The Reasoner, 9(3), 21-22 (ISSN 1757-0522).*
  27. Godden, D., and Zenker, F. (2015). Denying antecedents and affirming consequents: The state of the art. Informal Logic, 35 (1), 88–134 (ISSN 0824-2577).* (Q1)
  28. Petersen, G., and Zenker, F. (2014). From Euler to Navier-Stokes: A spatial analysis of conceptual changes in 19th-century fluid dynamics. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, 28(3), 235–253 (ISSN 0269-8595).* (Q2 AHCI)
  29. Zenker, F., and Proietti, C. (2014). Social dynamics and collective rationality (Editors’ introduction). Synthese, 191, 2353–2358 (ISSN 0039-7857). (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  30. Andreas H., and Zenker, F. (2014). Basic concepts of structuralism. Erkenntnis, 79(8), 1367–1372 (ISSN 0165-0106).
  31. Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (2014). Modeling diachronic changes in structuralism and in conceptual spaces. Erkenntnis, 79(8), 1547–1561 (ISSN 0165-0106).* (Q1 AHCI)
  32. Zenker, F. (2014). Pro-et-contra Argumentation—Gründe, Werte, Kompromisse (Reasons, Values, Compromises). Wissenswert, 03/2013, 20–29. *
  33. Zenker, F. (2013). What do normative approaches to argumentation stand to gain from rhetorical insights? Philosophy & Rhetoric, 46(4), 415–436 (ISSN 0031-8213).* (Q2 AHCI)
  34. Gärdenfors, P. and Zenker, F. (2013). Theory change as dimensional change: conceptual spaces applied to the dynamics of empirical theories. Synthese 190(6), 1039–1058 (ISSN 0039-7857).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  35. Zenker, F. (2011b). Editor’s introduction. Cogency 3(1), 7–12 (ISSN 0718-8285).
  36. Zenker, F. (2011a). Experts and Bias: When is the interest-based objection to an authority argument sound? Argumentation, 25, 355–370 (ISSN 0920-427X).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)
  37. Zenker, F. (2010). Analyzing social policy argumentation: a case study of the 2007 majority opinion of the German National Ethics Council regarding an amendment of the Stem Cell Law. Informal Logic, 30, 62–91 (ISSN 0824-2577).* (Q1)
  38. Zenker, F. (2006b). Lakatos’ challenge? Auxiliary hypotheses and non-monotonous inference. Journal for General Philosophy of Science, 37, 405–415 (ISSN 0925-4560).* (Q1 AHCI)
  39. Zenker, F. (2006a). Monotonicity and reasoning with exceptions. Argumentation, 20, 227–236 (ISSN 0920-427X).* (Q1 AHCI, SSCI)


Book Chapters (* indicates peer review)

  1. Zenker, F. (2021). De-biasing legal fact-finders. In: Dahlmann, C., & Tuzet, G. (eds.). Philosophical Foundations of Evidence Law (pp. 395-409). Oxford: Oxford University Press (ISBN 9780198859307).*
  2. Hahn, U., Bluhm, R., and Zenker, F. (2017). Causal Argument. In: Waldmann, M. (ed.). Oxford Handbook of Causal Reasoning (chapter 25). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press (DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199399550.013.26; ISBN: 9780199399550).*
  3. Zenker, F., and Dahlman, C. (2016). Debiasing and Rule of Law. In: Feteris, E., Kloosterhuis, H., Plug, J., and Smith, C. (eds.). Legal Argumentation and the Rule of Law (pp. 217–229). The Hague: Eleven Int. (ISBN 978-94-6236-702-9).*
  4. Zenker, F. (2016). Similarity as distance: Three models for scientific conceptual knowledge. In: Lukowski, P., Gemel, A., and Zukowski, B. (eds.). Cognition, Meaning and Action (Lodz-Lund Studies in Cognitive Science, Vol. X) (pp. 63-86). Lodz: Lodz University Press (ISBN 978-83-7969-759-5).
  5. Zenker, F., and Dahlman, C. (2016). Reliable Debiasing Techniques in Legal Contexts? Weak Signals from a darker Corner of the Social Science Universe. In: Paglieri, F., Bonelli, L., & Felletti, S. (Eds.). The psychology of argument: Cognitive approaches to argumentation and persuasion (pp. 173-196). London: College Publications (ISBN 978-1-84890-195-7).*
  6. Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (2015). Communication, Rationality, and Conceptual Changes in Scientific Theories. In: Zenker, F. & Gärdenfors, P. (eds.). Applications of Conceptual Spaces: The Case for Geometric Knowledge Representation (pp. 259–277). Dordrecht: Springer (978-3-319-15020-8).*
  7. Gärdenfors, P., and Zenker, F. (2015). Conceptual spaces at work (Editors’ introduction). In: Zenker, F., and Gärdenfors, P. (eds.). Applications of Conceptual Spaces: The Case for Geometric Knowledge Representation (pp. 3–13). Dordrecht: Springer (ISBN 978-3-319-15020-8).*
  8. Zenker, F. (2014). From Features via Frames to Spaces. Modeling Scientific Conceptual Change without Incommensurability or Aprioricity. In: Gamerschlag, T., D. Gerland, R. Osswald, and W. Petersen (eds.). Concept Types and Frames. Applications in Language and Philosophy (Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy Series, Vol. 94) (pp. 69–89). Dordrecht: Springer (ISBN 978-3-319-01540-8).*
  9. Zenker, F. (2013b). In Support of the Weak Rhetoric as Epistemic Thesis. On the Generality and Reliability of Persuasion Knowledge. In: Belle, H., van, Gillaerts, P., Gorp, B. van, Mieroop, D. van de, and Rutten, K. (eds.). Verbal and Visual Rhetoric in a Media World (Proceedings of Rhetoric in Society III, January 2011, Antwerp, Belgium) (pp. 61–75). Amsterdam: Leiden University Press (ISBN 978-90-8728-190-8).*
  10. Zenker, F. (2013a). Bayesian Argumentation. The Practical Side of Probability (Editor’s introduction). In: Zenker, F. (ed.). Bayesian Argumentation (Synthese Library Vol. 362). Dordrecht: Springer, 1–11 (ISBN 978-94-007-5356-3).
  11. Gärdenfors, P. & Zenker, F. (2012). Theory Change and Dimensional Change. In: Churnside, R. (ed.). Emerging Colors in Science—Transdisciplinary Essays (pp. 147–175). San José: University of Costa Rica Press (ISBN 978-9968-46-330-0).
  12. Zenker, F., Gottschall, C., Newen, A, Riel, R. van, & Vosgerau, G. (2011c). Designing an Introductory Course in Elementary Symbolic Logic within the Blackboard e-Learning Environment. In: Blackburn, P., Dithmarsch, H. van, Manzano, M., and Soler, F. (eds.). Tools for Teaching Logic (Proceedings of the Third International Congress Salamanca, Spain, June 2011, TICTTL) (pp. 249–255). (Springer Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence, Vol. 6680). Heidelberg: Springer (ISBN 978-3-642-21349-6).*
  13. Zenker, F. (2011b). Deduction, Induction, Conduction. An Attempt at Unifying Natural Language Argument Structures. In: Blair, J.A., and Johnson, R.H. (eds.). Conductive Argument: An Overlooked Type of Defeasible Reasoning (pp. 74–85). London: College Publications (ISBN 978-1-84890-005-9).*
  14. Gärdenfors, P., and Zenker, F. (2011a). Using Conceptual Spaces to Model the Dynamics of Empirical Theories. In: Olsson, E.J., and Enqvist, S. (eds.). Philosophy of Science Meets Belief Revision Theory (Logic, Epistemology, and the Unity of Science Vol. 21) (pp. 137–153). Berlin: Springer (ISBN 978-90-481-9608-1).


Book Reviews

  1. Yu, S., & Zenker, F. (2021). An eco-cognitive model of abductive reasoning—Review of Magnani, L. (2017). The Abductive Structure of Science Creativity: An Essay on the Ecology of Cognition. Cham: Springer. Science & Education, 30, 779-782 (ISSN 0926-7220).
  2. Zenker, F. (2014). Review of Spohn, W. (2012). The Laws of Belief. Oxford: OUP. The Philosophical Quaterly, 65(259), 310–313 (ISSN 0031-8094).
  3. Zenker, F. (2012). Amos and I. Review of Kahneman, D. (2011). Thinking fast and slow. New York: Farrar, Strauss and Giroux. Inquiry: Critical Thinking Across the Disciplines, 27(2), 54–57 (ISSN 1093-1082).
  4. Zenker, F. (2011). Parmenides as Secret Hero. Review of Betz, G. (2010). Theorie dialektischer Strukturen (Theory of Dialectical Structures). Frankfurt a. M.: Vittorio Klostermann. Argumentation, 25(4), 513–525 (ISSN 0920-427X).
  5. Zenker, F. (2010). Review of Eemeren, F.H. van, Garssen, B, and Meuffels, B. (2009). Fallacies and Judgments of Reasonableness. Amsterdam: Springer. Cogency 2(1), 149–165 (ISSN 0718-8285).
  6. Zenker, F. (2009b). Review of Eemeren, F.H. van, and Garssen, B. (eds.) (2008). Controversy and Confrontation. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Informal Logic, 29, 447475 (ISSN 0824-2577).
  7. Zenker, F. (2009a). Treating Kuhn’s Gap with Critical Contextualism. Review of William Rehg (2009). Cogent Science in Context. The Science Wars, Argumentation Theory and Habermas. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. Cogency 1 (1), 149–182 (ISSN 0718-8285).


Lexicon Entries

  1. Zenker, F. (2017). Falsification. In: Turner, B. (ed.). The Wiley Encyclopedia of Social Theory (pp. 1–3). Chichester: Wiley Blackwell (ISBN: 978-1-118-43086-6).
  2. Zenker, F. (2010). Entries: AGM; Deduction; Dilemma. In: Russo, F., and Williamson, J. (eds.). Key Terms in Logic. London: Continuum Books (ISBN 978-18-4706-114-0). Deduction preprinted in: The Reasoner 4 (2010), 64–65 (ISSN 1757-0522).