definition of justification

A justification is an argument that supports or supports an idea. In other words, it is a way of explaining something that serves as a complement or clarification of a previous statement.

The concept of justification is used in everyday language, in formal contexts and, finally, in the field of scientific research

We must justify what we say

If I make a statement, it is very likely that my interlocutor will ask me for clarification, that is, a justification for it. When we answer the questions why, how or why we are giving our justification about something, that is, some kind of reasons or motives related to what we say.

Sometimes we say things that are not acceptable to others and in response we are required an explanation that serves as a justification.

All of our claims have a degree of justification. Thus, if I say that I have faith in the power of the stars, it is very likely that someone will ask me what justifies this idea. There are ideas that have an unquestionable logical justification (for example, those that are based on logical syllogisms). We could affirm that opinion and faith have a "weak" justification and the use of reason presents a "strong" justification.

Our need to justify ideas or behaviors is obvious. However, we find unjustifiable approaches or behaviors, which are those that seem irrational.

Formal contexts

If I have to make a claim in writing in relation to a deficient service, I will be forced to state some facts and accompany them with a series of reasons that support my request. Something similar happens in legal language (for example, a sentence must present a legal justification).

If a member of an entity wants to present a project to improve some economic or organizational aspect, they must also make a justification for the project (basically why it is done and what it is for). In the sphere of philosophical reasoning, all statements are accompanied by some kind of justification (for example, the philosophical justification of the idea of ​​state).

In scientific research

In the theoretical framework of the research, a scientist must argue the benefits that are going to be obtained and the use that is going to be given. Justifying an investigation means answering the question "what is it for" (in this sense, a scientific project and a business project share the same purpose).

However, in the context of scientific methodology, science theorists refer to a more complex concept, the theory of justification. This approach is epistemological, which in simple words means that we have to know how we know something in order to have guarantees that it is something true. First, epistemology, studies the logically valid reasons. On the other hand, this discipline studies the methods used in scientific activity (the inductive, deductive or hypothetical-deductive method).

The analysis of scientific justification studies the entire intellectual process by which we create ideas (the generation of a hypothesis, its verification, its contrast and its definitive confirmation). You have to think that science is the attempt of a valid and irrefutable knowledge and, consequently, it needs a clear concept of justification. Otherwise, inconsistent arguments and evidence would be used, which are typical of pseudosciences.

Photos: iStock - shironosov / gremlin

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