Friday, 19 April 2013
3:30 pm, 817R Cathedral of Learning
Abstract: Much traditional philosophy of science focuses on the methodological standards properly applied by a lone individual investigator. Science is, however, a collective business, one that exploits the diversity of beliefs and value judgments. I try to show some of the ways in which diversity is valuable, how valuable diversity can be maintained, and how it can pose obstacles to achieving needed consensus. The existing norms of collective inquiry are best seen as having emerged haphazardly from a state in which scientific research played a very different role in human life. The philosophical scrutiny of those norms is an urgent and neglected task, and, I suggest, a natural extension of the traditional projects of logical empiricism.