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Confronting the Unexpected: The Treatment of Anomalous Phenomena in Scientific Research

Citace: [] VONDRÁŠEK, M., HAVLÍK, M., BENDA, L. Confronting the Unexpected: The Treatment of Anomalous Phenomena in Scientific Research. Atény, Řecko, 2012.
Druh: PŘEDNÁŠKA, POSTER
Jazyk publikace: eng
Anglický název: Confronting the Unexpected: The Treatment of Anomalous Phenomena in Scientific Research
Rok vydání: 2012
Autoři: Mgr. Martin Vondrášek , Mgr. Marek Havlík , Mgr. Libor Benda
Abstrakt EN: The paper aims to show how the scientific community reacts to an unexpected or anomalous event. For this purpose three events that occurred in science during the last fifty years will be considered. Marcus Raichle in 2001 presented his concept of the Default Mode Network, claiming that the brain has a default function, which is mainly present through specific activations of certain brain regions. At the time of its introduction, this concept was seen as very controversial and was initially rejected. At present, the Default Mode Network is considered by many thinkers as a new paradigm in the field of neuroscience. Joseph Weber was the first researcher seriously attempting to detect gravitational waves, a phenomenon predicted by the general theory of relativity. Drawing on the results of his measurements, he claimed in 1969 to have detected high fluxes of gravitational waves that greatly exceeded the values predicted by the theory. His claims led to a several-year controversy, which exposed some crucial issues of the methodology of scientific research. Recent high energy physics experiment OPERA showed anomalous results when a beam of neutrinos seemed to move at speed greater than the speed of light. Currently, an extensive discussion is going on about the nature of the measurement itself and the validity of its results. Focusing on these examples, the paper analyzes the behavior of the scientific community in a situation where the scientists encounter anomalous phenomenon. The features described in the paper include the scientific community?s attitude towards the issues concerning the validity of observation and measurement, the accuracy of theoretical assumptions, and generally, unpredicted developments in scientific research. Provided analysis illuminates the nature of scientists? coping with anomalous phenomena and clarifies the very nature of a discovery in science, namely in physics and neuroscience.
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