Epistemic Stances Towards Theories

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What types of epistemic stances can be taken by epistemic agents towards theories?

Clarifying the list of possible epistemic stances that can be taken towards a theory is one of the tasks of scientonomic ontology. Importantly, an answer to this question should specify all the epistemic stances that can be taken towards theories of all types; if a stance can be taken only towards a specific subtype of theory, that stance shouldn't be included in the answer to this question. Similarly, this list of stances should not include the more general stances that can be taken towards epistemic elements of all types, but only those that can be taken towards theories.

In the scientonomic context, this question was first formulated by Hakob Barseghyan in 2015. The question is currently accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by Scientonomy community. Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Acceptance (Barseghyan-2015), Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Pursuit (Barseghyan-2015) and Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Use (Barseghyan-2015) are currently accepted by Scientonomy community as the best available answers to the question. They state: "The stances of theory acceptance, theory pursuit and theory use can be taken towards a theory."

Broader History

In the historical literature, many different words have been used to describe the attitudes a scientific community can take towards a theory, generally without any attempt to clarify their respective meanings. Thomas Kuhn, for instance, used a number of equally vague words, including universally received, embraced, acknowledged, and committed, to describe the status of a theory.1pp. 10-13 Larry Laudan and Stephen Wykstra were among the first who distinguished between the acceptance and the pursuit of a theory.2pp. 108-114 3p. 216 Hakob Barseghyan and Jamie Shaw have argued that a similar distinction was implicit in the work of Imre Lakatos, although Lakatos did not explicitly draw the distinction.4p. 33 5

Scientonomic History

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
Scientonomy1 January 2016This is when the community accepted its first answers to this question, Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Acceptance (Barseghyan-2015), Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Pursuit (Barseghyan-2015), and Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Use (Barseghyan-2015), which indicates that the question itself is legitimate.Yes

All Theories

The following theories have attempted to answer this question:
TheoryFormulationFormulated In
Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Acceptance (Barseghyan-2015)The stance of theory acceptance can be taken towards a theory.2015
Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Pursuit (Barseghyan-2015)The stance of theory pursuit can be taken towards a theory.2015
Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Use (Barseghyan-2015)The stance of theory use can be taken towards a theory.2015
Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Scientificity (Sarwar-Fraser-2018)The stance of scientificity can be taken towards a theory.2018

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Accepted Theories

Suggested Modifications

Here is a list of modifications concerning this topic:
ModificationCommunityDate SuggestedSummaryVerdictVerdict RationaleDate Assessed
Sciento-2018-0013Scientonomy28 December 2018Accept scientificity as a distinct epistemic stance that epistemic agents can take towards theories. Also accept several questions concerning the definition of scientificity and the applicability of scientificity to other epistemic elements, such as methods and questions, as legitimate topics of scientonomic inquiry.Open

Current View

In Scientonomy, the accepted answers to the question are Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Acceptance (Barseghyan-2015), Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Pursuit (Barseghyan-2015) and Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Use (Barseghyan-2015).

Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Acceptance (Barseghyan-2015) states: "The stance of theory acceptance can be taken towards a theory." According to Barseghyan, acceptance as an epistemic stance can be taken towards theories.4pp. 30-32

Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Pursuit (Barseghyan-2015) states: "The stance of theory pursuit can be taken towards a theory." According to Barseghyan, the epistemic stance of pursuit can be taken towards theories, i.e. an epistemic agent can find a theory pursuitworthy.4pp. 30-40

Epistemic Stances Towards Theories - Theory Use (Barseghyan-2015) states: "The stance of theory use can be taken towards a theory." According to Barseghyan, the epistemic stance of use can be taken towards theories, i.e. an epistemic agent can find a theory useful.4pp. 30-40

Related Topics

This question is a subquestion of Epistemic Stances Towards Epistemic Elements. It has the following sub-topic(s):

References

  1. ^  Kuhn, Thomas. (1970) The Structure of Scientific Revolutions: Second Edition, Enlarged. University of Chicago Press.
  2. ^  Laudan, Larry. (1977) Progress and Its Problems. University of California Press.
  3. ^  Wykstra, Stephen. (1980) Toward a Historical Meta-Method for Assessing Normative Methodologies: Rationability, Serendipity, and the Robinson Crusoe Fallacy. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association, 211-222.
  4. a b c d  Barseghyan, Hakob. (2015) The Laws of Scientific Change. Springer.
  5. ^  Barseghyan, Hakob and Shaw, Jamie. (2017) How Can a Taxonomy of Stances Help Clarify Classical Debates on Scientific Change? Philosophies 2 (4), 24. Retrieved from http://www.mdpi.com/2409-9287/2/4/24.