Rethinking Ethnography for Philosophy of Science

Nancy Nersessian (Corresponding Author), Miles A.J. MacLeod

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We lay groundwork for applying ethnographic methods in philosophy of science. We frame our analysis in terms of two tasks, 1) to identify the benefits of an ethnographic approach in philosophy of science, and 2) to structure an ethnographic approach for philosophical investigation best adapted to provide information relevant to philosophical interests and epistemic values. To this end, we advocate for a purpose-guided form of cognitive ethnography which mediates between the explanatory and normative interests of philosophy of science, while maintaining openness and independence when framing such an investigation in order to achieve robust unbiased results.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)721-741
JournalPhilosophy of science
Issue number4
Early online date11 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


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