Information elaboration and epistemic effects of diversity

Synthese:1-21 (forthcoming)

Authors
Bianca Crewe
University of British Columbia
Sina Fazelpour
University of British Columbia
Abstract
We suggest that philosophical accounts of epistemic effects of diversity have given insufficient attention to the relationship between demographic diversity and information elaboration, the process whereby knowledge dispersed in a group is elicited and examined. We propose an analysis of IE that clarifies hypotheses proposed in the empirical literature and their relationship to philosophical accounts of diversity effects. Philosophical accounts have largely overlooked the possibility that demographic diversity may improve group performance by enhancing IE, and sometimes fail to explore the relationship between diversity and IE altogether. We claim these omissions are significant from both a practical and theoretical perspective. Moreover, we explain how the overlooked explanations suggest that epistemic benefits of diversity can depend on epistemically unjust social dynamics.
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DOI 10.1007/s11229-019-02108-w
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