PSA2016: The 25th Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association

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Values, Desires, and Evidence in Climate Science

If non-epistemic values enter into evidentiary assessments, there is concern that they will override or supplant evidence about the way the world actually is. I argue that this so-called problem of wishful thinking arises because of an overly simplistic conception of both epistemic and non-epistemic values. Using the case of climate change research, I argue that epistemic values and aims of research are themselves partly dependent on social, ethical, and pragmatic aims of research such that it is problematic to view them as sharply distinct. A positive account is provided of how values can operate as evidentiary considerations without bias.

Author Information:

Kristen Intemann    
Department of HIstory and Philosophy
Montana State University


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