Objectivity in Science

8th Munich-Sydney-Tilburg (MuST) Conference in Philosophy of Science
10-12 June 2015
Tilburg University, The Netherlands

The authority of science is closely tied its objectivity. Objectivity is widely perceived as an antidote to harmful bias in scientific research, and to an undesirable blending of scientific and political values. But what makes a scientific claim or a scientific inference objective? Can the ideal of objectivity be attained it all? Should we even strive for it? After all, several recent philosophical analyses have challenged and criticized the ideals of objectivity and value-freedom in science.
This conference encourages philosophers and scientists to present their research on objectivity in science. We aim at a plurality of perspectives and invite work from general philosophy of science as well as contributions that focus on a specific science, the science and values debate, or the role of objectivity in scientific policy advice.
Please find below a non-exhaustive list of topics that we are interested in:

  • objectivity applied to central concepts of philosophy of science, such as causation or explanation
  • objectivity in a logic of inductive/statistical inference
  • objectivity and the value-free ideal in science
  • objectivity in evidence-based policy
  • objectivity in a special science (e.g., physics, economics or medicine)
  • philosophical theories of objectivity outside philosophy of science, and their potential for an analysis of scientific objectivity

Matteo Colombo, Tilburg
Mark Colyvan, Sydney
Raoul Gervais, Tilburg
Paul Griffiths, Sydney
Stephan Hartmann, Munich
Jan Sprenger, Tilburg

The conference is co-organized by the:


Sydney LMU


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