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MOND and Methodology

Merritt, David (2021) MOND and Methodology. Karl Popper's Science and Philosophy. pp. 69-96.

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Abstract

In Logik der Forschung and later works, Karl Popper proposed a set of methodological rules for scientists. Among these were requirements that theories evolve in the direction of increasing content, and that new theories should only be accepted if some of their novel predictions are experimentally confirmed. There are currently two, viable theories of cosmology: the standard cosmological model, and a theory due to Mordehai Milgrom called MOND. Both theories can point to successes and failures, but only MOND has repeatedly made novel predictions that were subsequently found to be correct. Standard-model cosmologists, by contrast, have almost always responded to new observations in a post-hoc manner, adjusting or augmenting their theory as needed to obtain correspondence with the facts. I argue that these methodological differences render a comparison of the two theories in terms of their ‘truthlikeness’ or ‘verisimilitude’ essentially impossible since the two groups of scientists achieve correspondence with the facts in often very different ways, and I suggest that a better guide to the theories’ progress toward truth might be the methodologies themselves.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Merritt, Daviddavid.r.merritt@gmail.com0000-0002-9339-1551
Keywords: Karl Popper Dark matter Cosmology Verisimilitude
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Theory Change
Depositing User: David Merritt
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2021 03:51
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2021 03:51
Item ID: 19756
Journal or Publication Title: Karl Popper's Science and Philosophy
Publisher: Springer
Official URL: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-3-...
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1007/978-3-030-67036-8_5
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Theory Change
Date: 15 July 2021
Page Range: pp. 69-96
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19756

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