Objectivity in Science

June 10-12, 2015, Tilburg Center for Logic, General Ethics, Tilburg, the Netherlands

The authority of science is closely tied its objectivity. Objectivity is widely perceived as an antidote to harmful bias in scientific research, and to an undesirable blending of scientific and political values. But what makes a scientific claim or a scientific inference objective? Can the ideal of objectivity be attained it all? Should we even strive for it? After all, several recent philosophical analyses have challenged and criticized the ideals of objectivity and value-freedom in science. This conference encourages philosophers and scientists to present their research on objectivity in science. We aim at a plurality of perspectives and invite work from general philosophy of science as well as contributions that focus on a specific science, the science and values debate, or the role of objectivity in scientific policy advice. Please find below a non-exhaustive list of topics that we are interested in:

  • objectivity applied to central concepts of philosophy of science, such as causation or explanation
  • objectivity in a logic of inductive/statistical inference
  • objectivity and the value-free ideal in science
  • objectivity in evidence-based policy
  • objectivity in a special science (e.g., physics, economics or medicine)
  • philosophical theories of objectivity outside philosophy of science, and their potential for an analysis of scientific objectivity

Registration Deadline: 06/01/2015 For more information, please visit http://objectivity2015.wordpress.com/.

Call for papers

We will publish the best conference papers in a special issue of the Journal Synthese, subject to the usual refereeing process. Every conference participant is invited to contribute their full papers to that special issue. The submission deadline is 15 September 2015 and the maximal paper length is 7500 words. Papers will be submitted and reviewed through the editorial manager system of Synthese. There is a graduate student essay prize of € 250. If you wish to be considered please submit a full paper, a CV and a travel budget in addition to your extended abstract. Applications should be sent directly to object15[at]easychair.org with “Objectivity 2015: Graduate Student Essay Prize” in the subject line. For more information, please visit

Deadline: January 15, 2015

Posted: December 24, 2014