The problem of induction and metaphysical assumptions concerning the comprehensibility and knowability of the universe

PhilSci Archive (2007)
Nicholas Maxwell
University College London
Even though evidence underdetermines theory, often in science one theory only is regarded as acceptable in the light of the evidence. This suggests there are additional unacknowledged assumptions which constrain what theories are to be accepted. In the case of physics, these additional assumptions are metaphysical theses concerning the comprehensibility and knowability of the universe. Rigour demands that these implicit assumptions be made explicit within science, so that they can be critically assessed and, we may hope improved. This leads to a new conception of science, one which we need to adopt in order to solve the problem of induction.
Keywords Metaphysical assumptions of science  Standard empiricism  Aim-Oriented Empiricism
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