Publication 6140

Pask G. (1985) Problematic situations. Cybernetic 1: 79–87. Fulltext at
Excerpt: In summary, I have agreed that science should include the creation of hypotheses; that if it does, a dialectic mode of argument (a special case of a conversation) must be considered as able to accommodate the abduction or eductive components of induction; and that, if so, the logic of conversation, including analogy, is of a certain type and that its truth valuation schemes are different from standard schemes. You may or may not call a theory constructed on this basis, tested by means proper to this basis, a scientific theory but it does have a predictive, generative, explicative but not strictlyspeaking explanatory or proof-theoretic power and considerable generality. Participants may be scientists, their points of view, social organisations or systems of belief like Lakatos “programmes of scientific research”: to science as a totality. The hypotheses of Section 1 are invented and agreed by the participants; so, also, are the test instruments used to select evidence for datahood, to determine measured values affirming or denying the data. These are all, ultimately, consensual, and their invention, to be agreed (or not) is not simply mechanical in the sense of section 1. The lack of standard objectivity is the price paid for proper scrutiny of the phenomena of concern and interest when it comes to problem formulation and even, maybe, to problem solving. If you accept my argument, the epistemology, logic and ontology of science must be enlarged to encompass the old but as a subject of the emerging enterprise.

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