Rationale heuristik

Abstract

As a logical consequence of recent developments in the philosophy of science the concept of rationality has lost much of its impact. It seems that the rationality of methodological decisions in science can be defined no longer in an absolute sense but only in relation to a given context and in hindsight. This failure of methodology in assessing once and for all the rights and wrongs of scientific decisions is taken as a clue for reanalyzing the strategical intervention-points of methodological norms. It is shown that relativism and irrationalism are to be avoided by not cutting the process of scientific investigation into intrinsically different portions: context of justification and context of discovery. This dichotomy opens a logical and psychological gap between different stages of scientific evolution that the idea of comparing factual contents or degrees of justification is no longer able to bridge. In two case studies, the development of modern science in the 16th and 17th centuries and the development of special and general realtivity it is shown that the dichotomy is inherently implausibel. But if it is possible to analyze the context of justification and the context of discovery in same terms, the logical chain of reasoning is closed. This problem-shift defies both irrationalism and relativism and leads to a different view of scientific progress as an increase of information-processing capacity that can be measured by a certain set of indicators radically different from the received one

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2009-01-28

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Wissenschaft und Wissenschaftstheorie.Walter Herzog - 1987 - Zeitschrift Für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 18 (1-2):134-164.
Local and Normative Rationality of Science: The 'Content of Discovery' Rehabilitated. [REVIEW]Peter P. Kirschenmann - 1991 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 22 (1):61-72.

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