Edinburgh Research Explorer

Group Know-How

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSocially Extended Epietmology
PublisherOxford University Press
StateAccepted/In press - 2018


While mainstream epistemology has recently turned its focus on individual know-how (e.g., knowing-how to swim, ride a bike, play chess, etc.), there is very little, if any, work on group know-how (e.g., sports-team performance, jazz improvisation, knowing-how to tango, etc.). This chapter attempts to fill the gap in the existing literature by exploring the relevant philosophical terrain. We start by surveying some of the recent debates on individual knowledge-how and we argue that group know-how (G-KH) cannot always be reduced to individual knowledge-how. Rather, certain cases of G-KH call for a non-reductive analysis. A natural place to look for a theory of irreducible G-KH is the literature on joint intentionality and distributed cognition. First, we explore what a joint intentionality approach to G-KH might look like. Then we consider an alternative approach that views G-KH as a form of distributed cognition. Finally, we discuss a potential link between the two approaches.

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