Trust and distributed epistemic labor

Boaz Miller, Ori Freiman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This chapter explores properties that bind individuals, knowledge and communities together. Section 26.1 introduces Hardwig’s argument from trust in others’ testimonies as entailing that trust is the glue that binds individuals into communities. Section 26.2 asks “What grounds trust?” by exploring assessment of collaborators’ explanatory responsiveness, formal indicators such as affiliation and credibility, appreciation of peers’ tacit knowledge, game-theoretical considerations, and the role moral character of peers, social biases and social values play in grounding trust. Section 26.3 deals with establishing reliability standards for formation and breaching of trust. Different epistemic considerations and their underpinning of inductive risks are examined through various communication routes within a discipline, between disciplines and to the public. Section 26.4 examines whether a collective entity can be trusted over and above trust that is given to its individual members. Section 26.5 deals with the roles technological artifacts play in distributed research and collective knowledge. It presents the common view in which genuine trust cannot, in principle, be accorded to artifacts, so as an opposite view. We show that what counts as a genuine object of trust is relevant to debates about the boundaries of collective agency and as a criterion for extended cognitive systems.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Trust and Philosophy
PublisherTaylor and Francis Inc.
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781134881604
ISBN (Print)9781138687462
StatePublished - 8 Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes


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