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Conference "Formal Models of Scientific Inquiry"

Throughout the last two decades philosophical discussions on scientific inquiry have increasingly utilized formal models. This has been especially fruitful for the investigation of social aspects of scientific inquiry, such as the division of cognitive labor, social factors that influence scientific decision making, etc. To this end a variety of formal models have been developed, starting from analytical ones to agent-based models that provide computer simulations of scientific inquiry. One of the main advantages of formal approaches is that they help us to understand these issues precisely and to form normative generalizations that are difficult to obtain in view of traditional methods (such as, for example, historical case studies). Nevertheless, models frequently come with a high degree of idealization and simplification, which may impede their relevance for actual scientific practice. This poses the question, to which extent formal models can be used to provide an understanding of scientific inquiry, and to which extent they can be improved with respect to their relevance for science policy.

The aim of this conference is to bring together scholars working on different approaches to the formal modeling of scientific inquiry to discuss both different types of formal models and the prospects and limits of their usefulness for philosophy of science, social epistemology and science policy. We invite contributions on these and related issues, including:

Keynote speakers

Abstract submission

Authors are invited to submit an extended abstract (500-1000 words) related to the above questions to the EasyChair account by April 1, 2017.

Extended abstracts should be submitted as an attached PDF file. Please also provide a short abstract of up to 100 words.

An application for a special issue with the conference post-proceedings will be submitted to an internationally recognized journal (details TBA).

Important dates

  • [ ] submission deadline: April 1, 2017
  • [ ] notifications: May 1, 2017
  • [ ] workshop: July 18-19, 2017

Venue and how to get there


Program and Book of Abstract


Program Committee


For any queries please contact us at:


The conference is organised by the Research Group on Non-monotonic Logic and Formal Argumentation at the Faculty for Philosophy II, Ruhr-University Bochum.

The conference is supported by the Sofja Kovalevkaja award of the Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation (funded by the German Ministry for Education and Research).

Author: Research Group for Non-Monotonic Logics and Formal Argumentation

Created: 2017-03-04 Sat 19:51