Supported by a strong educational background, Elisabeth A. Lloyd, PhD, has excelled as a professor for over 30 years. After securing a Bachelor of Arts in general studies, summa cum laude, from the University of Colorado in 1980, she earned a PhD from Princeton University in New Jersey in 1984. Following these accomplishments, Dr. Lloyd commenced her career as an assistant in instruction with the Philosophy Department at Princeton University during 1983, further progressing to a visiting scholar with the Department of Genetics for Harvard University in Massachusetts from 1983 to 1984.
Soon thereafter, Dr. Lloyd began working at the University of California San Diego, holding the posts of visiting lecturer and assistant professor from 1984 to 1988. Furthermore, she briefly served as an assistant professor for the Department of Philosophy with the University of California Berkeley between 1988 and 1990, before contributing as a visiting senior lecturer to the Philosophy Department for the University of Auckland in New Zealand in 1990. She was a full professor at UC Berkley from 1997 to 1999, the first woman in the department to be honored as such. Currently, Dr. Lloyd serves as a distinguished professor and as Tanis Chair of History and Philosophy of Science for the History and Philosophy of Science Department at Indiana University in Bloomington, a position she has held since 2019.
Dr. Lloyd became involved in her profession because she was inspired by a professor, Gary Stahl, when she was an undergraduate. She was taking a course on human nature and he asked her if she wanted to assist him in an independent study; she said yes and found out he was a philosophy professor. It turned out what she was studying was philosophy, but she just did not know it at the time, as she was a pre-med student. Dr. Lloyd thought she was going into medicine and once she discovered the philosophy of science history and the philosophy of science, she became hooked.
Civically, Dr. Lloyd has volunteered her skills as a campaign writer for the California and National Democratic Party in Sacramento, California, since 1984, and has been involved with the Nature Conservancy, Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, and the National Organization for Women. An expert in the field, her creative works include “Science, Evolution and Politics,” “Climate Modeling: Philosophical and Conceptual Issues” and the “The Structure and Confirmation of Evolutionary Theory,” among others. Dr. Lloyd is also a regular contributor of articles to professional journals.
The highlight of Dr. Lloyd’s career was the publication of her 2005 book “The Case of the Female Orgasm: Bias in the Science of Evolution” with the Harvard University Press. The New York Times had a big article on it in the science section and they talked about it on “The View,” as she was a guest of Barbara Walters. It was also featured on “Saturday Night Live,” but it never occurred to her that it would become part of a popular culture. Dr. Lloyd won two prizes for it – the Vern and Bonnie Bullough Prize from the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality in 2006, and a prize from the Women’s Caucus.
In order to keep abreast of developments in her field, Dr. Lloyd maintains a professional relationship with several organizations including the International Society for History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Biology, the Society for Social Studies of Science and the Philosophy of Science Association, among others. A testament to her success, she has been the recipient of a fellowship from the University of California Humanities Research Institute, as well as from the National Science Foundation. In her spare time, Dr. Lloyd enjoys gardening, aikido, knitting, swimming, and playing acoustic and electric guitar.