Epistemological Self-Confidence in Human Factors Research

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Title Epistemological Self-Confidence in Human Factors Research
Author Dekker, Sidney; Nyce, James M.; Winsen, Roel van; Henriqson, Eder
Journal Name Journal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making
Year Published 2010
Place of publication United States
Publisher Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
Abstract recent conversation in the literature asks whether human factors constructs amount to folk modeling or to strong science. In this paper we explore this further in the context of well-known positions on the production of science and scientific rationality. We inquire about the sources of epistemological self-confidence—the extent to which human factors is satisfied with its beliefs and assumptions about how it knows what it knows. We question whether a large body of evidence for a construct is evidence of strong science, or whether critical reflection and skepticism about this is actually what distinguishes scientific knowledge from folk models. We also review presumptions of a-perspectival objectivity, in which researchers believe they are able to take a "view from nowhere" and enjoy an objective window onto an existing reality. We ask whether human factors constructs don't so much reflect but rather create a particular empirical world, which would not even exist without those constructs. This article serves as an invitation to rethink what we mean by epistemological confidence and how we arrive at it.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
Alternative URI http://dx.doi.org/10.1518/155534310X495573
Copyright Statement Copyright 2010 SAGE Publications. This is the author-manuscript version of the paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Volume 4
Issue Number 1
Page from 27
Page to 38
ISSN 1555-3434
Date Accessioned 2011-02-02
Language en_AU
Faculty Arts, Education and Law
Subject Decision Making
URI http://hdl.handle.net/10072/36237
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1x

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