Philosophy of Science and the Curse of the Case Study

  • Adrian Currie


We can divide the philosophy of science into two projects. Let’s call the first philosophy-directed. Here, we seek to describe, systematize and explain scientific practice, and draw on this to argue for philosophical positions. Science informs philosophy.1 The second could be named science-directed. We aim to clarify, clean-up and unify scientific concepts. Philosophy informs science.2 Both projects lean on generalizations about scientific method, practice, development and so on. Frequently, such generalizations are made in reference to case studies - particular, detailed descriptions of scientific activity. Here, I defend the use of case studies in both philosophy-directed and science-directed contexts.


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  • Adrian Currie

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