Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP)

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Workshop: Contested Expertise (30 March 2020)

Idea & Motivation

The focus of the workshop is on recent problems that scientific expert knowledge faces. In particular, this workshop will analyze the striking phenomenon that scientific expertise and scientific knowledge are being actively contested and questioned in public debates. This phenomenon takes different forms such as strategic science skepticism, biases in research, and a ‘post-truth’ attitude spreading in politics. One important goal of the workshop is to advance the interdisciplinary study of this phenomenon by bringing together researchers from the history, philosophy, and sociology of science, and science communication studies.
The talks of the workshop will present research projects and discuss at least two questions:

  • What are promising research questions in each discipline?
  • Which topics and questions could trigger productive collaborations between the history, philosophy, and sociology of science, and science communication studies?



09:30 - 10:20 Naomi Oreskes: What Gets Left Out – How History has Shaped What We Don’t Know about the Ocean
10:20 - 11:10 Kim Naumann: Criticizing Science, Legitimately and Illegitimately
11:10 - 11:30 Coffee Break
11:30 - 12:20 Kärin Nickelsen: Contesting Experts and Expertise. Perspectives from the History of Science
12:20 - 14:00 Lunch Break
14:00 - 14:50 Alexander Reutlinger: Rebuilding Trust in Contested Expertise
14:50 - 15:40 Hannah Schmidt-Petri: History, Role and Motivation of Maverick Scientists
15:40 - 16:10 Coffee Break
16:10 - 17:30 Martin Kusch: Wrap up talk and general discussion


Participation is allowed only on the basis of being invited by the organizers.



We would like to thank the Investitionsfonds of LMU Munich for funding this workshop.