Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Does science have an inherent bias?
Based on the following excerpt from Michael G. Barbour's essay from Uncommon Ground, "Social, political, and economic climates create and structure institutions, such as universities and granting agencies. Ecologists accomplish their research through such institutions; thus culture can bias research," it seems that Barbour has identified an inherent given in the scientific world. In essence, the point that Barbour is trying to put across is that science can never be fully interperted and explained without human influence. The world is as we see it, and we interpret things as such. And building on this, some reserach even goes as far as to try to prove that ideas such as global climate change do not in fact exist, when most scientific data illustrates otherwise. Furthermore, all too often stories of bending the facts and of adjusting correlations are making the research related news, and some of these cases may even be considered breaches in integrity. So, I beg the question is the exmaple I just cited (and others likes it) exmaples of trying to interpret information and data as Barbour says any scientist does regularly, or is it a bending of the facts and an effort to prove facts in one's favor?