September 29, 2023

How is scientific truth created? | MON | 07/17/2023 | 13:00

Science hasn’t just fallen into disrepute regarding the coronavirus pandemic and the climate crisis. Scientific studies and the scientists who work on them are increasingly attacked and portrayed as implausible, politically motivated, or bought off.

Conspiracy theories don’t only spread on social networks. Large corporate lobbyists employ their own researchers to attack and question the scientific consensus, and trolling factories from Russia to China operate in highly professional fashion to undermine scientific results and models and politically exploit the resulting uncertainties.

So the battle for scientific truth is in full swing. But what is actually meant when one speaks of truth in a scientific context? Is it possible to clearly define the scientific data as such? Where does science begin and where does it end? What is pseudoscience and how can it be distinguished from the other?

The Vienna-born philosopher Karl Popper put forward theses about science that still shape debate today, says philosopher of science and ethicist Harald Stelzer, who also researched Popper. Popper was particularly concerned with the openness and falsifiability of scientific ideas. In the light of new scientific theories, especially in physics, a new way of thinking about science has always emerged.

In an interview with Philip Bloom, Harald Stelzer explains how the concept of science is evolving, particularly in relation to cosmology, how important paradigmatic thinking is, why the natural sciences in particular have acquired a new and controversial general meaning, and how it is a meaningful concept. What science can look like in times of climate crisis.

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Invite and discuss science, truth and political misuse of scientific work with us. You can reach us on 0800 22 69 79 by phone during the show or on Punkteins(at)