Serendipity and Ignorance Studies

In Samantha Copeland, Wendy Ross & Martin Sand (eds.), Serendipity Science: An Emerging Field and its Methods. Springer Verlag. pp. 2147483647-2147483647 (2023)
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Abstract

Selene Arfini seeks to resolve a long-standing paradoxParadox and the seemingly exclusive dichotomy between knowledgeKnowledgeand ignoranceIgnorance (also Aching Ignorance) through the concept of serendipity. How can we find new knowledgeKnowledge when we do not know what are we looking for? This question is a brief version of Meno’s or the Learner’s ParadoxParadox, which still manages to be upsetting in contemporary philosophy, despite having been discussed since Plato’s times. Arfini believes that the paradoxParadox still upsets because we strongly connect the explicit act of searching to the event of finding, in the same way as we describe the ideas of knowledgeKnowledge and ignorance as opposite and unrelated. Arfini argues that these assumptions live on, thanks to a cluster of misconceptions that still envelop the ideas of discoveryDiscovery (also, Scientific Discovery), which could be overcome by utilizing insights from recent studies in serendipity, and by reframing ignoranceIgnorance (also Aching Ignorance)from a cognitiveCognition, Cognitive (-offloading) (-trajectory) (-probatonics) perspective.

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Selene Arfini
Universita' degli Studi di Pavia

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