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Introduction to Philosophy of Science for IBA

Course Description

In this course, you will engage with questions about the nature, aims, and limitations of scientific reasoning in the light of concrete case studies from several scientific fields. In particular, you will ask questions of what science should be like in order to be a trustworthy route to knowledge and to achieve the other ends we want it to have, such as usefulness to society.

We shall start from the questions of how to identify good, trustworthy science, and why this is important. Then, we shall zoom in on different aspects of scientific reasoning—including experimental reasoning, modelling, logical, statistical, and causal reasoning, and the role of values in science.

Taking this course, you will be thinking hard about the scientific enterprise in general, and its roles in business and economics in an international context. You will also sharpen your critical and analytical skills, and apply them creatively in a group video project focused on poverty.

 Learning Goals

Upon successful completion of the course, you will be able:

  • To describe and explain the nature of scientific reasoning, its methods, importance, and limitations;
  • to recognize, understand, and evaluate scientific arguments;
  • to apply theories, methods, and evidence to the problem of poverty.