This chapter examines science’s most important norm, objectivity. It argues that science ought to be objective because democratic societies need objective beliefs and methods to help resolve controversial moral, political, economic, cultural, and social debates. To help with the resolution of these debates, scientists should attempt to give unbiased testimony in public forums and should try to develop theories, hypotheses, methods, and concepts that are free from personal, cultural, social, moral or political biases. The most effective way of developing unbiased theories (hypotheses, methods, and concepts) is to attempt to test these theories against a mind-independent world. Even though objectivity is often difficult to achieve in science, the quest for objectivity is not an impossible dream or vain pursuit.
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