Alexander Reutlinger
Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München
Solving the “new demarcation problem” requires a distinction between epistemically legitimate and illegitimate roles for non-epistemic values in science. This paper addresses one ‘half’ (i.e. a sub-problem) of the new demarcation problem articulated by the Gretchenfrage: What makes the role of a non-epistemic value in science epistemically illegitimate? I will argue for the Explaining Epistemic Errors (EEE) account, according to which the epistemically illegitimate role of a non-epistemic value is defined via an explanatory claim: the fact that an epistemic agent is motivated by a non-epistemic value explains why the epistemic agent commits a particular epistemic error. The EEE account is inspired by Douglas’ and Steel’s “functionalist” or “epistemic constraint” accounts of epistemic illegitimacy. I will suggest that the EEE account is able to meet two challenges that these two accounts face, while preserving the key intuition underlying both accounts. If my arguments succeed, then the EEE account provides a solution to one half of the new demarcation problem (by providing a definition of what makes the role of a non-epistemic value epistemically illegitimate) and it opens up new ways for addressing the other half (i.e. characterizing an epistemically legitimate role for non-epistemic values).
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DOI 10.1016/j.shpsa.2022.01.018
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References found in this work BETA

Inductive Risk and Values in Science.Heather Douglas - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (4):559-579.
Bias and Values in Scientific Research.Torsten Wilholt - 2009 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 40 (1):92-101.
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The Value of Cognitive Values.Heather Douglas - 2013 - Philosophy of Science 80 (5):796-806.

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