Sir Karl Raimund Popper (28 July 1902 – 17 September 1994) was an Austrian-born British philosopher, academic and social commentator. One of the 20th century's most influential philosophers of science, Popper is known for his rejection of the classical inductivist views on the scientific method in favour of empirical falsification. According to Popper, a theory in the empirical sciences can never be proven, but it can be falsified, meaning that it can (and should) be scrutinised with decisive experiments.

Popper coined the term "critical rationalism" to describe his philosophy, something similar to Kant's philosophy. Popper rejected the empiricist view (following from Kant) that basic statements are infallible, rather that they are descriptions in relation to a theoretical framework. Concerning the method of science, the term "critical rationalism" indicates his rejection of classical empiricism and the classical observationalist-inductivist account of science that had grown out of it. Popper argued strongly against the latter, holding that scientific theories are abstract in nature, and can be tested only indirectly, by reference to their implications. He also held that scientific theory, and human knowledge generally, is irreducibly conjectural or hypothetical, and is generated by the creative imagination to solve problems that have arisen in specific historico-cultural settings.

More Info: