An Explanation of Resisted Discoveries Based on Construal-Level Theory

TitleAn Explanation of Resisted Discoveries Based on Construal-Level Theory
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsFang, H
JournalScience & Engineering Ethics
Volume21
Issue1
Pagination41-50
Date Published2015
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number13533452
KeywordsConstrual-level , Direct , Examined , HYPOTHESIS , MACROMOLECULES , PARITY , PLASMA , QUASICRYSTALS , Scientific , Suitable
AbstractNew discoveries and theories are crucial for the development of science, but they are often initially resisted by the scientific community. This paper analyses resistance to scientific discoveries that supplement previous research results or conclusions with new phenomena, such as long chains in macromolecules, Alfvén waves, parity nonconservation in weak interactions and quasicrystals. Construal-level theory is used to explain that the probability of new discoveries may be underestimated because of psychological distance. Thus, the insufficiently examined scope of an accepted theory may lead to overstating the suitable scope and underestimating the probability of its undiscovered counter-examples. Therefore, psychological activity can result in people instinctively resisting new discoveries. Direct evidence can help people judge the validity of a hypothesis with rational thinking. The effects of authorities and textbooks on the resistance to discoveries are also discussed. From the results of our analysis, suggestions are provided to reduce resistance to real discoveries, which will benefit the development of science. 
NotesFang, Hui 1; Email Address: fanghui@nju.edu.cn; Affiliation: 1: School of Electronic Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry for Life Science, Nanjing University, No. 163, Xianlin Avenue, Qixia District Nanjing China; Source Info: Feb2015, Vol. 21 Issue 1, p41; Subject Term: PLASMA Alfven waves; Subject Term: MACROMOLECULES; Subject Term: PARITY nonconservation; Subject Term: HYPOTHESIS; Subject Term: QUASICRYSTALS; Author-Supplied Keyword: Construal-level theory; Author-Supplied Keyword: Direct evidence; Author-Supplied Keyword: Examined scope; Author-Supplied Keyword: Scientific resistance; Author-Supplied Keyword: Suitable scope; Number of Pages: 10p; Document Type: Article
DOI10.1007/s11948-013-9512-x

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