The research group bridges the gap between theory and practice in a twofold way: firstly, it examines new connections between theoretical philosophy of science (epistemology, theory of science) and practical philosophy of science (ethics of science, political philosophy of science); secondly, it analyses relevant links between the cognitive dimension of the sciences (theories, hypotheses, discourses, models) and the material culture of the sciences (objects, equipment, experiments, practices). The group thus takes up contemporary tendencies to undercut traditional borders between epistemic and ethical, and between cognitive and material aspects of the sciences. It seeks to produce a rapprochement of the endpoints of both dichotomies and systematically explores these connections and creates a framework that allows outstanding doctoral candidates to pursue integrated philosophical research into the sciences in a stable and stimulating research environment.
The group is deliberately aligned with philosophy as a discipline in order to warrant a sufficient degree of methodological coherence given its broad topical framework. This disciplinary focus, in turn, requires the collaboration of several institutions which are able to provide a critical mass of expertise and resources. The Institute of Philosophy of Leibniz Universität Hannover and the Department of Philosophy of Bielefeld University provide such a clear focus in philosophy of science, a consistent and complementary character of research profiles, well-established co-operations between their scholars, and a close vicinity of their locations.