Normative Theory

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What is normative theory? How should it be defined?

While some propositions attempt to describe and explain the world, others prescribe how things ought to be, what is right and what is wrong, what is acceptable and what is not. It is important to provide this class of propositions with a proper scientonomic definition.

In the scientonomic context, this question was first formulated by Zoe Sebastien in 2016. The question is currently accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by Scientonomy community. Normative Theory (Sebastien-2016) is currently accepted by Scientonomy community as the best available definition of the term. Normative Theory (Sebastien-2016) states "A set of propositions that attempts to prescribe something."

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
Scientonomy3 September 2016The question became accepted as legitimate with the publication of Sebastien (2016).Yes

All Theories

The following theories have attempted to answer this question:
TheoryFormulationFormulated In
Normative Theory (Sebastien-2016)A set of propositions that attempts to prescribe something.2016
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Accepted Theories

The following theories have been accepted as answers to this question:
CommunityTheoryAccepted FromAccepted Until
ScientonomyNormative Theory (Sebastien-2016)15 February 2017

Suggested Modifications

Here is a list of modifications concerning this topic:
ModificationCommunityDate SuggestedSummaryVerdictVerdict RationaleDate Assessed
Sciento-2016-0002Scientonomy3 September 2016Accept a new taxonomy for theory, normative theory, descriptive theory to reintroduce normative propositions (such as those of ethics or methodology) to the scientific mosaic.Not AcceptedSince this modification consisted of two interrelated but essentially distinct suggestions - one definitional and one ontological - it was decided by the community to divide it into two modifications so that the gist of the proposed suggestions is properly articulated. In particular, it was agreed that there are two modifications in "the heart of this single modification - one ontological, the other definitional".c1 It was also agreed that the current formulation "is exclusively definitional, and does not give the community an opportunity to appreciate (and, well, accept) the ontological changes that come along with it".c2 Consequently, it was decided to divide this modification into two modifications - one definitional and one ontological.c323 January 2017
Sciento-2017-0001Scientonomy23 January 2017Accept new definitions for theory, normative theory, and descriptive theory. Also, modify the definition of methodology to reflect these changes.AcceptedThe community agreed that this is "an important addition to theoretical scientonomy".c1 It was agreed that since "the paradox of normative propositions has been solved, a revised set of definitions was needed".c2 It was emphasized that if we're going to have any sort of conversation on the status of normative propositions in the mosaic, "then we need to start from a definition".c315 February 2017

Current View

In Scientonomy community, the accepted definition of the term is Normative Theory (Sebastien-2016). It is defined as: "A set of propositions that attempts to prescribe something."

Normative Theory (Sebastien-2016).png

While not explicitly stated, the definition assumes that normative propositions involve evaluation, i.e. they "say how something ought to be, what's good or bad, what's right or wrong".1p. 12 In contrast with descriptive propositions, normative propositions do not aim to tell how things are, were, or will be, but rather what is good or bad, desirable or undesirable, permissible or impermissible. Read More

Related Topics

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

References

  1. ^  Barseghyan, Hakob. (2015) The Laws of Scientific Change. Springer.

Contributors

Jacqueline Sereda (17.0%), Hakob Barseghyan (83.0%)