Science, values and the human dimensions

The presented paper substantiates the principle that values are an immanent component of science and any rational cognitive activity. This principle belongs to the European cultural tradition starting from the book of Genesis of the Old Testament, the values of certainty in the antique Greek philosophy and Francis Bacon's coincidence of knowledge and power. Values in science form complicated structures inconnection with different types of knowledge including “the knowledge that”, empirical evidence, various types of generalizations or rules, methods, directions, algorithms, “the knowledge how”, “the knowledge why” or other types of knowledge. Since the assignments of different types of values are the products of a decision-making, it is useful to distinguish many types of decision-making, especially semantic decision-making, information decision-making and decision-making with distinctly pragmatic dimensions. The values assignable to scientific activities and their results also include their social recognition, respect and prestige granted to knowledge and bearers of knowledge by society and social groups or communities. Knowledge generation and the rational and justified application of the achieved and acceptable impacts are also connected with decision-making procedures, values and criteria of social acceptance.
Keywords types of knowledge  certainty  decision-making inscience  types of values connected with science andcognitive activities  types of decision-making in science  social dimensions of knowledge
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DOI 10.1023/A:1013199402635
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