Epistemic norms on evidence-gathering

Philosophical Studies 180 (9):2547-2571 (2023)
  Copy   BIBTEX


In this paper, we argue that there are epistemic norms on evidence-gathering and consider consequences for how to understand epistemic normativity. Though the view that there are such norms seems intuitive, it has found surprisingly little defense. Rather, many philosophers have argued that norms on evidence-gathering can only be practical or moral. On a prominent evidentialist version of this position, epistemic norms only apply to responding to the evidence one already has. Here we challenge the orthodoxy. First, we argue that there is no significant normative difference between responding to evidence you have and gathering more evidence. Second, we argue that our practices of epistemically criticizing agents for their poor evidence-gathering indicate the existence of epistemic norms on evidence-gathering. Finally, we show that our thesis has important implications for recent debates about the relationship between epistemic norms and inquiry.

Similar books and articles

Theorizing about the epistemic.Stewart Cohen - 2016 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 59 (7-8):839-857.
Teleological epistemology.Jane Friedman - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (3):673-691.
Inquiring Further: Essays on Epistemic Normativity.Elise Woodard - 2022 - Dissertation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
The Epistemic and the Zetetic.Jane Friedman - 2020 - Philosophical Review 129 (4):501-536.
Inquiry and the epistemic.David Thorstad - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (9):2913-2928.
Epistemic instrumentalism, permissibility, and reasons for belief.Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen - 2018 - In Conor McHugh, Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting (eds.), Normativity: Epistemic and Practical. Oxford University Press. pp. 260-280.
Evidence and Epistemic Normativity.Daniel Buckley - 2022 - Dissertation, Indiana University, Bloomington
No Epistemic Norm for Action.SImion Mona - 2018 - American Philosophical Quarterly 55 (3):231-238.
Epistemic Norms as Social Norms.David Henderson & Peter Graham - 2019 - In Miranda Fricker, Peter Graham, David Henderson & Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Social Epistemology. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 425-436.


Added to PP

1,216 (#8,577)

6 months
419 (#3,120)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Carolina Flores
University of California, Santa Cruz
Elise Woodard
King's College London

References found in this work

Echo chambers and epistemic bubbles.C. Th Nguyen - 2020 - Episteme 17 (2):141-161.
Knowledge in an uncertain world.Jeremy Fantl & Matthew McGrath - 2009 - New York: Oxford University Press. Edited by Matthew McGrath.
Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Philosophy 76 (297):460-464.
Knowledge and Action.John Hawthorne & Jason Stanley - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (10):571-590.

View all 53 references / Add more references