Objectives of the scientific approach

- Explain observed world in terms of generalized principles
- Maximize predictive power (i.e. ``If we do x, y will probably result'')
- Hypothesis are disproved or not disproved, not proved or not proved

Approaches to scientific knowledge

- Hypothesis formulation and testing (Popper, 1972)
- Empirical generalization (Mayring, 2007; Vernadsky, 1926)
- Systems modeling (Laszlo, 1996)
- Dialectical analysis (Levins, 1998)
- Historical materialism (Hughes, 2000)

Hypothesis testing

Empirical generalization

Modeling complex adaptive systems

Dialectical analysis

Historical materialism

Brian M Napoletano 2011-09-09