University of Edinburgh
On What It Takes to Be An Expert
9 November 2018, 16:00
Faculdade de Letras de Lisboa
Sala Mattos Romão (Departamento de Filosofia)
Abstract: Recent works in epistemology have shown how challenging it is to define what it takes for one to be a cognitive expert in some field. Starting from a shared intuition that the definition of an expert depends upon the conceptual function of expertise, I shed light on two main approaches to the notion of an expert: according to novice-oriented accounts of expertise, experts need to provide laypeople with information they lack in some domain; whereas, according to research-oriented accounts, experts need to contribute to the epistemic progress of their discipline. In this paper, I defend the thesis that cognitive experts should be identified by their ability to perform the latter function rather than the former, as novice-oriented accounts, unlike research-oriented ones, fail to comply with the rules of a functionalist approach to expertise.