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Fundamental science


Fundamental science

Fundamental science is either fundamental physics or basic science. The term fundamental science attributes to a scientific specialty a causal or conceptual priority by either of two, differing distinctions. Within philosophy of science, the many empirical sciences are often posed such that fundamental physics is the foundation underlying all others, which thereby are the special sciences that rest upon and in principle are derivable from, or conversely are reducible to, the objects and laws of the fundamental science.

In science's planning and practice, fundamental science is an infrequent synonym of basic science, also termed pure science, which yields theories and predictions—principally in natural sciences such as physics, chemistry, and biology, yet even in other empirical sciences, too, such as cognitive sciences and behavioral sciences—not the technology and techniques developed in applied science. Using some theories and predictions from basic sciences—a scientific foundation—applied sciences, such as engineering and biomedicine, yield products and services.

Versus special science

Modeling fundamental interactions, fundamental physics is presumed to underlie all other sciences—such as astrophysics, chemistry, biology, geology, psychology, and economics—categorized as special sciences.[1][2][3][4]—and so chemistry is special science. Bridging physical sciences to biological sciences via biochemistry and influencing sciences generally, chemistry has been viewed as the central science.[5][6]

Versus applied science

Basic science develops and establishes information to understand nature or at least predict phenomena, whereas applied science uses portions of basic science to develop interventions via technology or technique to alter events or outcomes.[7][8] Although applied and basic sciences can interface closely in research and development, applied science is commonly termed engineering, whereas basic science is also termed pure science or sometimes fundamental science.[9][10]

Basic science includes fundamental physics and many special sciences—natural sciences like astrophysics, biology, chemistry, geology, and perhaps cognitive sciences, too, but generally excluding behavioral sciences like psychology and social sciences like economics—and excludes engineering, medical sciences, and epidemiology, for instance, which are applied sciences, set apart from the basic/pure/fundamental science.[8][9][11][12][13][14]

Common, populist errors mistake medicine, technology, and their uses for science.[7][8][14][15][16] They can be grouped: STM (science, technology & medicine); STS (science, technology & society). Yet, though interrelated and influencing each other,[11][12][13][17][18] they have divergent journals, aims, cultures, methods, principles, standards, and knowledge.[8][14][18][19] Although the Nobel Prize committee, since 1901, mixes basic with applied sciences for its annual award in Physiology or Medicine, the globe's longest continuing scientific society, the Royal Society of London, awards while holding natural science—that is, physical sciences and biological sciences—apart from applied science, including medical sciences.[20]

See also


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  3. ^ Vítor Neves, ch 12 "Sciences as open systems—the case of economics", in Olga Pombo, Juan M Torres, John Symons & Shahid Rahman, eds, Special Sciences and the Unity of Science (Dordrecht, Heidelberg, London, New York: Springeory of Light and Matter, exp edn w/ new intro by A Zee (Princeton & London: Princeton University Press, 2006), p 5.
  4. ^ "Figure 1: Contradictions lead to better theories".  in Schwarz, John H (1998). "Recent developments in superstring theory". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 95 (6): 2750–7. PMC 19640. PMID 9501161. doi:10.1073/pnas.95.6.2750. 
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  16. ^ J N Clarke, S Arnold, M Everest & K Whitfield (Jan 2007). "The paradoxical reliance on allopathic medicine and positivist science among skeptical audiences". Social Science & Medicine 64 (1): 164–73. PMID 17045377. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2006.08.038. 
  17. ^ K Bayertz & P Nevers (1998). "Biology as technology". Clio Medica 48: 108–32. PMID 9646019. 
  18. ^ a b John V Pickstone & Michael Worboys (Mar 2011). "Focus: Between and beyond 'histories of science' and 'histories of medicine'—introduction". Isis 102 (1): 97–101. PMID 21667777. doi:10.1086/658658. 
  19. ^
    • Lester S King (May 1983). "Medicine in the USA: Historical vignettes: XI: Medicine seeks to be 'scientific'". JAMA 249 (18): 2475–9. PMID 6341631. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330420025028. 
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    • A Zalewski (Mar 1999). "Importance of philosophy of science to the history of medical thinking". Croatian Medical Journal 40 (1): 8–13. PMID 9933889. 
    • Kevork Hopayian (May 2004). "Why medicine still needs a scientific foundation: Restating the hypotheticodeductive model—part two". British Journal of General Practice 54 (502): 402–3. PMC 1266186. PMID 15372724. 
    • A Skurvydas (2005). "New methodology in biomedical science: Methodological errors in classical science". Medicina 41 (1): 7–16. PMID 15687745. 
    • Ronald A Arky (2007). "Abe Flexner, where are you? We need you!". Transactions of the American Clinical and Climatological Association 118: 89–96. PMC 1863593. PMID 18528492. 
    • Peter Byass (2011). "The democratic fallacy in matters of clinical opinion: Implications for analysing cause-of-death data". Emerging Themes in Epidemiology 8 (1): 1. PMC 3026021. PMID 21223568. doi:10.1186/1742-7622-8-1. 
    • M Brandon Westover, Kenneth D Westover KD & Matt T Bianchi (2011). "Significance testing as perverse probabilistic reasoning". BMC Medicine 9: 20. PMC 3058025. PMID 21356064. doi:10.1186/1741-7015-9-20. 
    • Alfredo Morabia (2005). "Epidemiological causality". History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 27 (3-4): 365–79. PMID 16898206. 
    • Michael Kundi (July 2006). "Causality and the interpretation of epidemiologic evidence". Environmental Health Perspectives 114 (7): 969–74. PMC 1513293. PMID 16835045. doi:10.1289/ehp.8297. 
    • Andrew C Ward (2009). "'"The role of causal criteria in causal inferences: Bradford Hill's 'aspects of association. Epidemiologic Perspectives & Innovations 6: 2. PMC 2706236. PMID 19534788. doi:10.1186/1742-5573-6-2. 
    • Gary Taubes (Mar 2001). "The soft science of dietary fat". Science 291 (5513): 2536–45. PMID 11286266. doi:10.1126/science.291.5513.2536. 
    • Georg W Kreutzberg (May 2005). "Scientists and the marketplace of opinions: Scientific credibility takes on a different meaning when reaching out to the public". EMBO Reports 6 (5): 393–6. PMC 1299311. PMID 15864285. doi:10.1038/sj.embor.7400405. 
    • John Worrall (Apr 2010). "Evidence: Philosophy of science meets medicine". Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 16 (2): 356–62. PMID 20367864. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2753.2010.01400.x. 
  20. ^ "Medals, Awards & Prize lectures", The Royal Society website, accessed 22 Sep 2013.
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