Philosophical Quarterly 61 (244):496-517 (2011)

Authors
Stephen John
Cambridge University
Abstract
Using the controversy over the MMR vaccine, I consider the reasons why non-experts should defer to experts, and I sketch a model for understanding cases where they fail to defer. I first suggest that an intuitively plausible model of the expert/non-expert relationship is complicated by shifting epistemic standards. One possible moderate response to this challenge, based on a more complex notion of non-experts' relationship with experts, seems unappealing as an account of the MMR controversy. A more radical suggestion is that non-experts might have a political reason to defer to experts, when not doing so will involve ‘epistemological free-riding’. I investigate the implications
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DOI 10.1111/j.1467-9213.2010.687.x
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What Is Epistemic Public Trust in Science?Gürol Irzik & Faik Kurtulmus - 2019 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 70 (4):1145-1166.
Challenging the Moral Status of Blood Donation.Paul C. Snelling - 2014 - Health Care Analysis 22 (4):340-365.
Moral Testimony Under Oppression.Nicole Dular - 2017 - Journal of Social Philosophy 48 (2):212-236.

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