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The epistemic value of expert autonomy

Dellsén, Finnur (2018) The epistemic value of expert autonomy. [Preprint]

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Abstract

According to an influential Enlightenment ideal, one shouldn't rely epistemically on other people's say-so, at least not if one is in a position to evaluate the relevant evidence for oneself. However, in much recent work in social epistemology, we are urged to dispense with this ideal, which is seen as stemming from a misguided focus on isolated individuals to the exclusion of groups and communities. In this paper, I argue that that an emphasis on the social nature of inquiry should not lead us to entirely abandon the Enlightenment ideal of epistemically autonomous agents. Specifically, I suggest that it is an appropriate ideal for those who serve as experts in a given epistemic community, and develop a notion of expert acceptance to make sense of this. I go on to show that, all other things being equal, this kind of epistemic autonomy among experts makes their joint testimony more reliable, which in turn brings epistemic benefits both to laypeople and to experts in other fields.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Dellsén, Finnurfinnurd@gmail.com0000-0003-4989-4204
Additional Information: Forthcoming in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
Subjects: General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
Depositing User: Dr. Finnur Dellsén
Date Deposited: 02 Jan 2019 00:14
Last Modified: 02 Jan 2019 00:14
Item ID: 15530
Official URL: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/p...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1111/phpr.12550
Subjects: General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
Date: 2018
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15530

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