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This Encyclopedia of Scientonomy pursues three major goals:

  1. Outline with encyclopedic rigor the current state of our knowledge concerning the mechanism of scientific change, including changes in both theories and methods of their evaluation.
  2. Trace and document all changes in the field of scientonomy, as they are proposed and accepted by the scientonomic community.
  3. List and outline the open questions concerning the process of scientific change and thus assist with future research in the field.

The encyclopedia was established in 2016 by scientonomic community. Its current editors in-chief are Hakob Barseghyan, Nicholas Overgaard and Paul Patton.

Semantic Approach

This encyclopedia uses the semantic approach implemented via Semantic MediaWiki framework: the author's don't write their articles in a purely textual fashion (as is the case in most encyclopedias), but are asked to enter the relevant data in a structured, semantically meaningful way. Thus, once entered in specially designed forms, the data is stored in the database of this encyclopedia and is then automatically retrieved on any other relevant page.

For instance, a theory's page allows the authors to enter the dates when the theory was accepted by different communities. Once this acceptance record is entered, it is stored in the database and is then shown automatically on the respective topic's page. Consider, for instance, the history section of the topic Mechanism of Method Employment; this section is generated automatically based on the individual acceptance records of the respective theories that attempt to answer the question of method employment, such as The Third Law (Barseghyan-2015) or The Third Law (Sebastien-2016). This makes it possible to trace the acceptance history of any theory or topic, keep track of the suggested modifications, etc.

This approach applies to all the categories of this encyclopedia:

  • Community: This category lists all the communities recorded in this encyclopedia.
  • Topic: These are all the questions that a community can accept as legitimate topics for research. The topics can be definitional, descriptive, or normative.
  • Theory: This category includes all the individual propositions that attempt to define, describe, or prescribe something. Theories are attempts to answer a certain question (topic); thus, theories also come in three types: definitions, descriptive theories, and normative theories.
  • Modification: Suggested modifications are attempts to convince a community to change its views on a certain topic, i.e. to accept and/or reject a theory.

Semantic Map

Here is the basic semantic map of this encyclopedia. Click on a category, to go to the respective page:

CommunityTopicTheoryModificationWiki Semantic Map.png

The encyclopedia also stores data on related bibliographic records and authors:

AuthorBibliographic RecordWiki Semantic Map Author Bibliographic Record.png

How to Write Articles?

The first question you need to ask as an author: what kind of information are you going to enter? If you wish to create a completely new page, then what category does it belong to?

  • Is it a topic page? I.e., is it a page on a certain question that different theories are attempting to answer? Here are some typical topic pages: Theory, Mechanism of Theory Acceptance, Scope of Scientonomy. If your page is a topic page, then check here if such a page already exists and, if it does not, create a new topic page.
  • Is it a theory page? I.e. is it a page on an individual attempt to answer a certain question? Here are some typical theory pages: The Second Law (Barseghyan-2015), The Second Law (Patton-2016), Epistemic Community (Overgaard-2016). If so, go to this page to add a new theory.
  • Is it a suggested modification page? These pages are usually added by the editors of this encyclopedia who trace all the scientific journals which make use of the scientonomic model of modifications and document those modifications in this encyclopedia. If you are an editor, then go to your community page first and add the modification from there. All communities are listed here.
  • Is it a community page? First, try to locate the community in this list. If the community is not in the system, go ahead and add it.
  • Is it a bibliographic record, such as a book, an article, or a collection? Then go to this page to add a new record.
  • is it an author? Authors of all bibliographic resources registered in this encyclopedia are to be entered separately here.

If you wish to change something on an already existing page, locate that page and click on the Edit tab. A respective form appear and, if you have the necessary credentials to modify pages of that category, you will be able to alter the data in respective boxes.

How to Become an Author?

If you wish to become an author and contribute to the encyclopedia, please email the co-editors in chief Hakob Barseghyan, Nicholas Overgaard or Paul Patton.


Guidelines for Authors

Guidelines for Readers

Open Questions

List of Open Questions


  1. ^  Shaw, Jamie and Barseghyan, Hakob. (2019) Problems and Prospects with the Scientonomic Workflow. Scientonomy 3, 1-14. Retrieved from