While it is commonly accepted that justified beliefs must be strongly supported by evidence and that support comes in degrees, the question of how much evidential support one needs in order to have a justified belief remains. In this paper, I consider how the question about degrees of evidential support connects with recent debates between consequentialist and deontological explanations of epistemic norms. I argue that explaining why strong, but not conclusive, evidential support is required for justification should be one explanandum that such theories seek to explain. Furthermore, I argue that foundational theories that appeal to the promotion of epistemic value (especially consequentialism, but perhaps also some versions of epistemic deontology) are better suited to provide such an explanation.
February 12, 2022 at 07:48PM