European Journal for Philosophy of Science

, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 1–13 | Cite as

The example of the IPCC does not vindicate the Value Free Ideal: a reply to Gregor Betz

ORIGINAL PAPER IN PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE

Abstract

In a recent paper, Gregor Betz has defended the value-free ideal: “the justification of scientific findings should not be based on non-epistemic (e.g. moral or political) values”against the methodological critique, by reference to the work of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This paper argues that Betz’s defence is unsuccessful. First, Betz’s argument is sketched, and it is shown that the IPCC does not avoid the need to “translate” claims. In Section 2, it is argued that Betz mischaracterises the force of the methodological critique. Section 3 shows why the methodological critique still applies to the work of the IPCC even on a refined version of Betz’s argument. Section 4 then considers an alternative way of defending the work of the IPCC which is in-line with, but does not clearly vindicate, the value-free ideal.

Keywords

Inductive risk Value free ideal for science International Panel on Climate Change Climate science Epistemic values Knowledge 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of History and Philosophy of ScienceUniversity of Cambridge, Free School LaneCambridgeEngland

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