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Experimentation by Industrial Selection

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 January 2022


Industry is a major source of funding for scientific research. There is also a growing concern for how it corrupts researchers faced with conflicts of interest. As such, the debate has focused on whether researchers have maintained their integrity. In this article we draw on both the history of medicine and formal modeling to argue that given methodological diversity and a merit-based system, industry funding can bias a community without corrupting any particular individual. We close by considering a policy solution (i.e., independent funding) that may seem to promote unbiased inquiry but that actually exacerbates the problem without additional restrictions.

Values in Science
Philosophy of Science , Volume 84 , Issue 5 , December 2017 , pp. 1008 - 1019
Copyright © The Philosophy of Science Association

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We would like to thank the audiences at Values in Medicine, Science, and Technology 2015; the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy; The Science of Evolution and the Evolution of the Sciences; International Conference on Applied Ethics; Rationality, Agency, and Responsibility in Social Groups; and the biennial meeting of the PSA 2016.


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