A couple of weeks back we discussed questions related to funding and philosophy in the context of Daniel Dennett’s review of a recent book by Alfred Mele (original post; Mele’s reply). Matthew Brown, a philosopher of science (UT Dallas), thinks that one of the central questions raised there should get more attention. He wants us to “think past the specific details of Mele’s book, Dennett’s critique, and the Templeton foundation” to get at the relationship between funding and a well-ordered philosophical research agenda, and the similarities and differences between the sciences and philosophy. He writes:
Past a certain point, making an effective counter-argument [in science] requires a counter-laboratory with instruments producing inscriptions that can be used in arguments. To a large extent, the technical nature of modern science is a major source of its power and effectiveness; but a cost is that we have to rely on trust to a greater extent. And conflict of interest is at least a pro tanto reason to withhold that trust, whereas trust is not at issue in philosophical arguments in the same sense.
You can read the whole post here.