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Evidence: Wanted, alive or dead

Psillos, Stathis (2015) Evidence: Wanted, alive or dead. In: UNSPECIFIED.

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Abstract

This paper is meant to link the philosophical debate concerning the underdetermination of theories by evidence with a rather significant socio-political issue that has been taking place in Canada over the past few years: the so-called ‘death of evidence’ controversy. It places this debate within a broader philosophical framework by discussing the connection between evidence and theory; by bringing out the role of epistemic values in the so-called scientific method; and by examining the role of social values in science. While it should be admitted that social values play an important role in science, the key question for anyone who advocates this view is: what and whose values? The way it is answered makes an important epistemic difference to how the relation between evidence and theory is appraised. I first review various arguments for the claim that evidence underdetermines theory and shows their presuppositions and limitations, using conceptual analysis and historical examples. After broaching the relation between evidence and method in science by highlighting the need to incorporate epistemic values into the scientific method, my discussion focuses on recent arguments for the role of social values in science. Finally, I address the implications of the approach outlined for the current ‘death of evidence’ debate in Canada.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Psillos, Stathispsillos@phs.upa.gr
Additional Information: Penultimate draft of a paper forthcoming in the Canadian Journal of Philosophy. My paper originates in a lecture given at the University of Toronto in April 2014, as part of the Lives of Evidence National Lectures Series, under the auspices of the Situating Science research project.
Keywords: underdetermination, evidence, epistemic values, social values, standpoint epistemologies
Subjects: General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
General Issues > Feminist Approaches
General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Theory Change
General Issues > Values In Science
Depositing User: Stathis Psillos
Date Deposited: 01 Aug 2015 20:38
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2015 20:38
Item ID: 11598
Subjects: General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
General Issues > Feminist Approaches
General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Theory Change
General Issues > Values In Science
Date: 31 July 2015
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/11598

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