Is The Science of Science As A Field of Study In Its Own Right Alive Or Dead?

David Wojick dwojick at CRAIGELLACHIE.US
Sun Feb 16 15:12:38 EST 2014


Most of your questions fall into the domain of philosophy of science (which 
happens to be my Ph.D. field) where they have been addressed in 
considerable detail for over 400 years. There is also the field of science 
studies, which you might try searching on, although it has become political 
in recent decades. Philosophy of science is certainly based on empirical 
evidence, primarily observation, as is the history of science.

My working definition of science is the explanation of nature (including 
human) based on observation. So far as I can tell the differences between 
the sciences are due to the differences in what they study. The simpler the 
phenomenon the more rigorous can be the analysis.

I am not saying that your questions have been well answered; in fact I 
think that our understanding of science is quite limited, especially 
because our understanding of human reasoning is very limited. But a great 
deal of work has been done and is being done.


At 02:55 PM 2/16/2014, you wrote:
>Adminstrative info for SIGMETRICS (for example unsubscribe): 
>Thank you.  I agree with you that part of what I identify can be 
>considered in some manner a part of a very broadly based science of 
>science and are well known sub-domains, together with some of the metrics 
>work discussed by this group and possibly the so-called science of science 
>You ask "What else do you have in mind when you say the questions are 
>"what is science and the nature of science?"
>The core of a science of science would identify, categorise and classify 
>what qualifies as science, what is its nature and what are its 
>characteristics, and would do so from a position of knowledge based on 
>empirical evidence [unlike some of the philosophy of science].
>Is political science a science like physics?  If so what are the 
>characteristics which so identify it as such and if not what kind of 
>science is it and how is it identified as a science?  What are the common 
>characteristics of physics, political science and any other science which 
>permit them all to be considered science and what are the differences 
>which do not disqualify them all from being science [if they are]?
>How many different kinds of science do we have?  What makes them different 
>from each other [apart from the fields of nature or other phenomena they 
>make study of]?
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