Using Democratic Values in Science: an Objection and (Partial) Response

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Schroeder, S. Andrew
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conference paper description
Many philosophers of science have argued that social and ethical values have a significant role to play in core parts of the scientific process. A question that naturally arises is: when such value choices need to be made, which or whose values should be used? A common answer to this question turns to political values — i.e. the values of the public or its representatives. In this paper, I argue that this imposes a morally significant burden on certain scientists, effectively requiring them to advocate for policy positions they strongly disagree with. I conclude by discussing under what conditions this burden might be justified.