Kuhn, Popper, and the Superconducting Supercollider

Abstract
The demise of the Superconducting Supercollider is often explained in terms of the strain that it placed on the federal budget of the United States, and change in national security interests with the end of the Cold War. Recent work by Steve Fuller provides a framework to re-examine this episode in epistemological terms using the work of Kuhn and Popper. Using this framework, it is tempting to explain the demise as resulting from the overly Kuhnian character of its proponents, who supposedly argued for its construction by appealing to the importance of testing the predictions of a specific paradigm . On this reading, the SSC case appears as an example of how Kuhn’s paradigm-driven view of science was invoked to keep science closed and autonomous from society. I argue that the SSC episode should not be viewed as giving support to the displacement of Kuhn’s view of science for Popper’s, and that such a displacement is detrimental to the project of integrating discussion on science into the public sphere. Drawing upon Rouse and Wimsatt, I argue that understanding paradigms as practices blunts some criticisms against Kuhn’s model, and that his model should play an important epistemological role in the aforementioned project.Keywords: Thomas S. Kuhn; Karl Popper; Steve Fuller; Big Science; Superconducting Supercollider
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 13,358
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Barry Barnes (2003). Thomas Kuhn and the Problem of Social Order in Science. In Thomas Nickles (ed.), Thomas Kuhn. Cambridge University Press. 122.

View all 22 references

Citations of this work BETA
Similar books and articles
Steve Fuller (2005). Kuhnenstein: Or, the Importance of Being Read. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 35 (4):480-498.
Richard Henry Schmitt (2006). Darwin, Kuhn, and Polanyi. Tradition and Discovery 33 (2):49-55.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-09-02

Total downloads

19 ( #102,742 of 1,679,366 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #183,761 of 1,679,366 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.