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Evidence: Wanted, Alive or Dead

Evidence: Wanted, Alive or Dead
75 Queens Park Cr. E, Emmanual College 001
Time: Apr 16th, 5:00 pm End: Apr 16th, 7:00 pm
Interest Categories: Science/Technology, Philosophy (UTSC), Philosophy (UTM), Philosophy (FAS), Law, Faculty of , History & Philosophy of Science & Technology (FAS), Critical Theory, 2000-
Lecture by Stathis Psillos, Rotman School of Philosophy, Univ. of Western Ontario

The JHI Working Group on "Situating Science: Scientific Evidence" and the Institute for the history and Philosophy of Science and Technology are pleased to present:

Stathis Psillos, Rotman Institute of Philosophy, University of Western Ontario

Evidence: Wanted, Alive or Dead

The role and value of evidence in science have gained prominence recently due to the ‘death of evidence’ controversy. The criticism of evidence can be from within science and from without. From within science, it is typically argued that evidence underdetermines theory, that it is impotent to justify belief in the truth (or the approximate truth) of scientific theories, or that it relies on various subjective values and considerations. From without science, it is argued that evidence is fabricated or is just the result of social negotiations and that relying on evidence to justify beliefs is just one among the many ‘styles of thinking’. In this talk I will discuss these two types of criticism of evidence and of evidence-based rationality and show their limitations. I will illustrate their problems using historical examples of how evidence bears on theory and will sketch a conception of scientific rationality as well as of democratic society which gives prominent role to scientific evidence.


  • Helena Likwornik, legal counsel, Ontario Court of Appeal; and Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Law, The University of Toronto
  • Maya Goldenberg, Department of Philosophy, University of Guelph
  • Brian Baigrie, The Institute for History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, University of Toronto

This event is free and open to the public. Registration is not required.  For further information, please contact the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at (416) 978-5397.


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