Authors
Uwe Peters
Universität Bonn
Abstract
In the philosophy of science, it is a common proposal that values are illegitimate in science and should be counteracted whenever they drive inquiry to the confirmation of predetermined conclusions. Drawing on recent cognitive scientific research on human reasoning and confirmation bias, I argue that this view should be rejected. Advocates of it have overlooked that values that drive inquiry to the confirmation of predetermined conclusions can contribute to the reliability of scientific inquiry at the group level even when they negatively affect an individual’s cognition. This casts doubt on the proposal that such values should always be illegitimate in science. It also suggests that advocates of that proposal assume a narrow, individualistic account of science that threatens to undermine their own project of ensuring reliable belief formation in science.
Keywords confirmation bias  values in science  Mandevillian cognition
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DOI 10.1093/bjps/axy079
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References found in this work BETA

Thinking, Fast and Slow.Daniel Kahneman - 2011 - New York: New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Science, Policy, and the Value-Free Ideal.Heather Douglas - 2009 - University of Pittsburgh Press.
The Enigma of Reason.Dan Sperber & Hugo Mercier (eds.) - 2017 - Cambridge, MA, USA: Harvard University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

What Is the Function of Confirmation Bias?Uwe Peters - 2022 - Erkenntnis 87 (3):1351-1376.

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