Accidental Group

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What is accidental group? How should it be defined?

This term has to denote all those groups that are somehow accidental (e.g. left handed Armenian smokers). The task is to understand what makes these groups accidental.

In the scientonomic context, this question was first formulated by Nicholas Overgaard in 2016. The question is currently accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by Scientonomy community. Accidental Group (Overgaard-2017) is currently accepted by Scientonomy community as the best available definition of the term. Accidental Group (Overgaard-2017) states "A group that does not have a collective intentionality."


Acceptance Record

Here is the complete acceptance record of this question (it includes all the instances when the question was accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by a community):
CommunityAccepted FromAcceptance IndicatorsStill AcceptedAccepted UntilRejection Indicators
Scientonomy19 May 2017The question became accepted with the publication of Overgaard's A Taxonomy for Social Agents of Scientific Change.Overgaard (2017)Yes

All Theories

The following theories have attempted to answer this question:
TheoryFormulationFormulated In
Accidental Group (Overgaard-2017)A group that does not have a collective intentionality.2017
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Accepted Theories

The following theories have been accepted as answers to this question:
CommunityTheoryAccepted FromAccepted Until
ScientonomyAccidental Group (Overgaard-2017)2 February 2018

Suggested Modifications

Here is a list of modifications concerning this topic:
ModificationCommunityDate SuggestedSummaryVerdictVerdict RationaleDate Assessed
Sciento-2017-0012Scientonomy19 May 2017Accept a new taxonomy for group and its two sub-types - accidental group, and community.AcceptedA consensus has emerged after a long discussion that the distinction and the respective definitions should be accepted. It was noted that "these formulations tend to be the starting point for so many of our discussions"c1 and that "despite all disagreements that this taxonomy causes, it is actually accepted by the community".c2 Yet, it was also indicated that whereas the definition of group as "two or more people that share a characteristic" is the best we have at the moment, it may be potentially necessary to pursue the idea of redefining it as "one or more people..." to allow for one-scientist communities.c3 Finally, while a question was raised whether there is any "value in defining accidental groups as something separate from groups",c4 it was eventually agreed that it is important to draw "a clear distinction between the two kinds of groups as accidental groups and communities".c52 February 2018

Current View

In Scientonomy community, the accepted definition of the term is Accidental Group (Overgaard-2017). It is defined as: "A group that does not have a collective intentionality."

Accidental Group (Overgaard-2017).png

This definition aims to discern between accidental groups, i.e. the ones that don't have a collective intentionality, and actual communities, i.e. groups that do have collective intentionality. Read More

Related Topics

This topic is also related to the following topic(s):