Non-Epistemic Values and the Multiple Goals of Science

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Elliott, Kevin; McKaughan, Daniel
preprint description
Recent efforts to argue that non-epistemic values have a legitimate role to play in assessing scientific models, theories, and hypotheses typically either reject the distinction between epistemic and non-epistemic values or incorporate non-epistemic values only as a secondary consideration for resolving epistemic uncertainty. Given that scientific representations can legitimately be evaluated not only based on their fit with the world but also with respect to their fit with the needs of their users, we show in two case studies that non-epistemic values can play a legitimate role as factors that override epistemic considerations in assessing scientific representations for practical purposes.