Imbalance and the state of research : emergent challenges to scientific independence & objectivity

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Hopf, David: Imbalance and the state of Research : emergent challenges to scientific independence and objectivity. Hannover : Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universität, Diss., 2020, 248 S. DOI:

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Sum total of downloads: 198

In this dissertation, I provide a conceptual framework for the analysis of impediments to the independence and objectivity of the overall state of research. I argue that we need a new approach beyond existing conceptions of scientific objectivity. This is because—when concerned with states of research—not only do we have to account for problems with individual findings but also with imbalance, that is the neglect or overabundance of specific types of research relative to others. In the first of the three parts of the dissertation, I define the concept “state of research”, and introduce the idea of its imbalance. The latter concept is based on a discussion of various examples from the literature. In the second part, I analyze three major concepts that can help explain why these cases can and should be considered problems for the independence and objectivity of science: epistemic trustworthiness, productiveness, and justice. These three normative criteria and their interrelations form the general structure of the conceptual framework. In the third part, I operationalize the criteria to show that and how they can be applied to the cases introduced in the first part, and present the results. I conclude with a discussion of the implications for higher-order concepts such as bias, the independence of science, and objectivity. I argue that when we look at the application of these concepts to the state of research, in addition to purely epistemic considerations, we also have to emphasize the social responsibility of science.
License of this version: CC BY 3.0 DE
Document Type: doctoralThesis
Publishing status: publishedVersion
Issue Date: 2020
Appears in Collections:Philosophische Fakultät

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pos. country downloads
total perc.
1 image of flag of Germany Germany 119 60.10%
2 image of flag of Austria Austria 16 8.08%
3 image of flag of Switzerland Switzerland 14 7.07%
4 image of flag of United States United States 7 3.54%
5 image of flag of Turkey Turkey 7 3.54%
6 image of flag of Italy Italy 6 3.03%
7 image of flag of United Kingdom United Kingdom 5 2.53%
8 image of flag of Russian Federation Russian Federation 4 2.02%
9 image of flag of Poland Poland 3 1.52%
10 image of flag of Canada Canada 3 1.52%
    other countries 14 7.07%

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