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PhD course: Ignorance, Agnotology, and Uncertainty: Drivers for Doctoral Research


University of Copenhagen


The PhD School and Centre for European and Comparative Legal Studies invite all PhD students within the discipline of jurisprudence to a course on

Ignorance, Agnotology, and Uncertainty: Drivers for Doctoral Research.

Course description

“It is very difficult to find a black cat in a dark room” an ancient proverb warns. “Especially when there is no cat”. Stuart Firestein likens scientific research to a collective fumbling and stumbling in the dark, a process that stands in stark contrast to the popular perception of the scientific method as a systematic search for knowledge. While this disjuncture is particularly sharp in scientific research, this picture also bleeds into research projects with legal, regulatory and governance challenges at their core. We are encouraged to define tight research questions that ‘fill in gaps’ in existing knowledge, whether these are wrought of new developments or revisit past debates. Yet, in the practice of pursuing such research, however, it often becomes clear that the compelling questions are different than those that served as the point of departure. ‘Adjacent possibles’ loom into view, and the research process refines ignorance into higher quality ignorance that yield further or more specific unknowns. The gap between what PhD projects are perceived to be, and what they prove to be in practice is often the source of anxiety for PhD candidates who feel that their projects are not ‘on track’.

Read more about the course (pdf)

Course Information


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Course dates
09 November 2022 - 09 November 2022
Course organizer
The PhD School, Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen
Place/Venue
University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Law, Njalsgade 76, DK-2300 Copenhagen S, Room 6B.4.04 (Building 6B, 4 floor, Room 4)
City
Country
Denmark
Workload
1 ECTS
Link
https://jura.ku.dk/phd/english/calender/2022/...