Although prediction has been largely absent from discussions of explanation for the past 40 years, theories of explanation can gain much from a reintroduction. I review the history that divorced prediction from explanation, examine the proliferation of models of explanation that followed, and argue that accounts of explanation have been impoverished by the neglect of prediction. Instead of a revival of the symmetry thesis, I suggest that explanation should be understood as a cognitive tool that assists us in generating new (...) predictions. This view of explanation and prediction clarifies what makes an explanation scientific and why inference to the best explanation makes sense in science. *Received August 2009; revised September 2009. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, University of Tennessee, 801 McClung Tower, Knoxville, TN 37920‐0480; e‐mail: email@example.com. (shrink)
Fraud from the frontlines: the importance of being nice Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s11016-010-9492-2 Authors HeatherDouglas, Department of Philosophy, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, 815 McClung Tower, Knoxville, TN 37996-0480, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Douglas proposes a new ideal in which values serve an essential function throughout scientific inquiry, but where the role values play is constrained at key points, protecting the integrity and objectivity of science.
Weighing complex sets of evidence (i.e., from multiple disciplines and often divergent in implications) is increasingly central to properly informed decision-making. Determining “where the weight of evidence lies” is essential both for making maximal use of available evidence and figuring out what to make of such evidence. Weighing evidence in this sense requires an approach that can handle a wide range of evidential sources (completeness), that can combine the evidence with rigor, and that can do so in a way other (...) experts can assess and critique (transparency). But the democratic context in need of weight-of-evidence analysis also places additional constraints on the process, including communicability of the process to the general public, the need for an approach that can be used across a broad range of contexts (scope), and timeliness of process (practicality). I will compare qualitative and quantitative approaches with respect to both traditional epistemic criteria and criteria that arise from the democratic context, and argue that a qualitative explanatory approach can best meet the criteria and elucidate how to utilize the other approaches. This should not be surprising, as the approach I argue for is the one that most closely tracks general scientific reasoning. (shrink)
Johnstone, H. W., Jr. Rhetoric and communication in philosophy.--Smith, C. R. and Douglas, D. G. Philosophical principles in the traditional and emerging views of rhetoric.--Wallace, K. R. Bacon's conception of rhetoric.--Thonssen, L. W. Thomas Hobbes's philosophy of speech.--Walter, O. M., Jr. Descartes on reasoning.--Douglas, D. G. Spinoza and the methodology of reflective knowledge in persuasion.--Howell, W. S. John Locke and the new rhetoric.--Doering, J. F. David Hume on oratory.--Douglas, D. G. A neo-Kantian approach to the epistomology of (...) judgment in criticism.--Bevilacqua, V. M. Lord Kames's theory of rhetoric.--Brockriede, W. E. Bentham's philosophy of rhetoric.--Anderson, R. E. Kierkegaard's theory of communication.--Macksoud, S. J. Ludwig Wittgenstein, radical operationism and rhetorical stance.--Stewart, J. J. L. Austin's speech act analysis.--Torrence, D. L. A philosophy of rhetoric from Bertrand Russell.--Clark, A. Martin Buber, dialogue, and the philosophy of rhetoric.--Bennett, W. Kenneth Burke--a philosophy in defense of un-reason.--Dearin, R. D. The philosophical basis of Chaim Perelman's theory of rhetoric. (shrink)
The terms ``objectivity'''' and ``objective'''' are among the mostused yet ill-defined terms in the philosophy of science and epistemology. Common to all thevarious usages is the rhetorical force of ``I endorse this and you should too'''', orto put it more mildly, that one should trust the outcome of the objectivity-producing process.The persuasive endorsement and call to trust provide some conceptual coherenceto objectivity, but the reference to objectivity is hopefully not merely an attemptat persuasive endorsement. What, in addition to epistemological endorsement,does (...) objectivity carry with it? Drawing on recent historical and philosophical work,I articulate eight operationally accessible and distinct senses of objectivity.While there are links among these senses, providing cohesion to the concept, I argue thatnone of the eight senses is strictly reducible to the others, giving objectivity itsirreducible complexity. (shrink)
Although a strict dichotomy between facts and values is no longer accepted, less attention has been paid to the roles values should play in our acceptance of factual statements, or scientific descriptive claims. This paper argues that values, whether cognitive or ethical, should never preclude or direct belief on their own. Our wanting something to be true will not make it so. Instead, values should only be used to consider whether the available evidence provides sufficient warrant for a claim. This (...) argument is made for all relevant values, including cognitive, ethical, and social values. The rational integrity of science depends not on excluding some values and including others in the reasoning process, but of constraining all values to their proper role in belief acceptance. (shrink)
Although epistemic values have become widely accepted as part of scientific reasoning, non-epistemic values have been largely relegated to the "external" parts of science (the selection of hypotheses, restrictions on methodologies, and the use of scientific technologies). I argue that because of inductive risk, or the risk of error, non-epistemic values are required in science wherever non-epistemic consequences of error should be considered. I use examples from dioxin studies to illustrate how non-epistemic consequences of error can and should be considered (...) in the internal stages of science: choice of methodology, characterization of data, and interpretation of results. (shrink)
Risk management of nanotechnology is challenged by the enormous uncertainties about the risks, benefits, properties, and future direction of nanotechnology applications. Because of these uncertainties, traditional risk management principles such as acceptable risk, cost–benefit analysis, and feasibility are unworkable, as is the newest risk management principle, the precautionary principle. Yet, simply waiting for these uncertainties to be resolved before undertaking risk management efforts would not be prudent, in part because of the growing public concerns about nanotechnology driven by risk perception (...) heuristics such as affect and availability. A more reflexive, incremental, and cooperative risk management approach is required, which not only will help manage emerging risks from nanotechnology applications, but will also create a new risk management model for managing future emerging technologies. (shrink)
In the debate over the role of science in environmental policy, it is often assumed that science can and should be clearly demarcated from policy. In this paper, I will argue that neither is the case. The difficulty of actually differentiating the scientific arena from the policy arena becomes apparent the moment one attempts to actually locate the boundary. For example, it is unclear whether scientific summaries to be used by regulatory agencies are in the realm of science or policy. (...) If science, then should the authors consider the regulatory implications of uncertainties? If policy, then what is the relevance of a peer review of the document solely by scientists? This descriptive problem is only accentuated by a normative problem: should we try to keep the two realms distinct? The traditional answer has been yes, for the primary reason that the science should not be infected by the social and ethical values so prevalent in the policy realm. I will argue that, to the contrary, social and ethical values are desirable components of scientific reasoning. Indeed, on closer examination, the norms for valuesin reasoning are the same for science and policy. If I am correct, the pressure to delineate science from policy abates. (shrink)
Traditionally, the cognitive values have been thought to be a collective pool of considerations in science that frequently trade against each other. I argue here that a finer grained account of the value of cognitive values can help reduce such tensions. I separate the values into three groups, minimal epistemic criteria, pragmatic considerations, and genuine epistemic assurance, based in part on the distinction between values that describe theories per se and values that describe theory-evidence relationships. This allows us to clarify (...) why these values are central to science and what role they should play, while reducing the tensions among them. (shrink)
This study developed and tested a model of culture’s effect on budgeting systems, and hypothesized that system variables and reactions to them are influenced by culture-specific work-related and ethical values. Most organizational and behavioral views of budgeting fail to acknowledge the ethical components of the problem, and have largely ignored the role of culture in shaping organizational and individual values. Cross-cultural differences in reactions to system design variables, and in the behaviors motivated or mitigated by those variables, has implications for (...) the design and effectiveness of budgeting systems. The data largely support our research model, demonstrating the hypothesized national cultural differences in system design variables (e.g., participation, standards tightness, budget emphasis, etc. which we characterized as the opportunity and incentives to create budgetary slack), and the expected relationship between incentives (but not opportunity) to create slack and slack creation behavior. The data demonstrate hypothesized cultural differences in ethical ideology but show ethical ideology related to slack creation behavior only for U.S. managers. A discussion of the results and their implications is included. (shrink)
Philosophy of Science After Feminism is an important contribution to philosophy of science, in that it argues for the central relevance of advances from previous work in feminist philosophy of science and articulates a new vision for philosophy of science going in to the future. Kourany’s vision of philosophy of science’s future as “socially engaged and socially responsible” and addressing questions of the social responsibility of science itself has much to recommend it. I focus the book articulation of an ethical-epistemic (...) ideal for science, the Ideal of Socially Responsible Science, compare it to recent work in the same vein by HeatherDouglas, and argue for some advantages of Kourany’s approach. I then ask some critical question about the view, particularly with respect to the source of values that are to be integrated into science and the status of values that are to be so integrated. I argue that Kourany is too sanguine about where the values that inquirers will use come from and that these values seem to be accorded too fixed a status in her account. (shrink)