Epistemological and Ethical Aspects of Time in Scientific Research

Daria Jadreškić

In my dissertation I analyse the way time constraints influence scientific research in different contexts, basic and applied. There are pragmatic and ethical reasons to prefer a quicker result to a delayed one, since the accountability of science to the society means not only addressing societal needs, but addressing them reasonably soon. However, a quick solution doesn’t live up to its promises if it is a bad solution, i.e. epistemically flawed or erroneous. My research goal is to give an account of the role time plays in setting scientific agendas and justifying scientific theories and hypotheses. I argue that time-sensitivity underlies other standard values in science like simplicity and predictive sucess. Some of the research questions I am dealing with are: How does the need to achieve time-defined goals affect the research: selection and interpretation of evidence and design of methods? In which cases does time pressure play an important role, and in which it doesn’t? Is translational research actually speeding up the process of translation? How does science prioritize urgent matters? How are urgencies identified, measured, and modelled? What kind of methodological trade-offs do urgencies require? Which of them are scientific problems and which are broadly social?