CfA: Biasing Mechanisms in Scientific Research
Leibniz University Hannover
May 31st – June 1st, 2024
In the philosophy of science, recent work has led to an emerging consensus that science is not value-free, and that values, including social and political values, play different roles in the research process. It has also become clear that, values can have both a positive and a negative impact on science. Sometimes, values can contribute to science’s epistemic and social goals, while other times, they can have a detrimental effect on science’s epistemic goals, i.e., biasing research results. With this framework in mind, the main goal of this workshop is to clarify the negative roles of values in scientific research, and in particular their sometimes-biasing effects. While it is well-known that biases impact scientific research results, we have a less clear understanding of the different types of biases, their mechanisms, and their scope. Current invited speakers include:
- Heather Douglas (Michigan State University)
- Jacob Stegenga (University of Cambridge)
- David Teira (Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia)
- Anke Büter (Aarhus University)
We welcome submissions that seek to advance our understanding of negative biases and their effects in scientific research. Questions that might be addressed include (but are not limited to):
- In which situations are biases most likely to occur?
- Which mechanisms enable biases to interfere with scientific practice? Are these mechanisms intrinsic to scientific practices or can we debias scientific procedures to mitigate or eliminate them altogether?
- What relationship(s) do biases have to values in science? Do negative biases have any special implications for the value-free ideal?
- What relationship(s) do biases have to diversity in science?
- How might we characterize ‘negative’ biases?
- Are there different types of biases or biasing mechanisms in science?
This workshop is supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG), as a part of the research project “A Philosophical Approach to Biasing Mechanisms in Scientific Research” and the SOCRATES Centre for Advanced Studies. Abstracts should be a maximum of 800 words, in English, and submitted by January 15th, 2024 at the latest. They can be submitted through the following Google form: https://forms.gle/zhHsp9XaUGwAzKCU9. We aim to give notifications of acceptance by mid to late February.
Any questions or inquiries can be sent to Jamie Shaw (email@example.com).
Jamie Shaw, Manuela Fernandez-Pinto, and Torsten Wilholt (Organizing Committee)