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CSS colloquium: Line Andersen, CSS

Joint Commitment and Scientific Change

Info about event


Wednesday 8 March 2017,  at 14:15 - 15:45


Aud D2 (1531-119)

Line Edslev Andersen, lea@css.au.dk, PhD student at Aarhus University

The talk will be based on joint work with Hanne Andersen from the University of Copenhagen.

In recent years, several philosophers of science have drawn on Margaret Gilbert’s work on joint commitment in analyzing the social aspects of scientific knowledge. These studies have not explicitly examined how stable scientists’ joint commitments to beliefs are, while Gilbert herself has argued that such commitments can be very stable and act as a brake on scientific change. We argue that joint commitments to beliefs in science are not necessarily as stable as Gilbert indicates and that they are sometimes embedded in more stable, modifiable structures of joint commitments that do not in themselves work as a brake on scientific change. Such structures, rather than joint commitments to particular beliefs, seem to provide the ‘glue’ that hold research groups together as social atoms.

Line Edslev Andersen is a PhD student at the Centre for Science Studies at Aarhus University. Her research interests include the philosophy of mathematics and social epistemology of science.