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What is Empiricism?

Empiricism is the philosophy that all knowledge originates in experience and observations. It’s a cornerstone of the scientific method and underlies much of modern science and medicine.

Among philosophers, empiricism is contrasted with rationalism, where rationalism is the perspective that knowledge is developed by reason, analysis or thinking things through.

When agilists refer to empiricism, we are simply recognizing that there are categories of problems that are too complex to be solved by reason or analysis alone. While simple problems are straightforward to solve, complex problems require that we experiment our way to the solution.

In the context of Scrum, empiricism refers to the idea that solving complex problems, or doing complex work, can only be done using an exploratory process rather than relying on predetermined plans. 

 


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Blog Post
It has been said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results, and yet we engage in an unconscious fiction of predictability every day. We work in an uncertain world, and our main goal in pursuing agility is to confront the unknown, and in doing so, to mast...
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In Scrum, empiricism refers to the idea that solving complex problems, or doing complex work, can only be done using an exploratory process rather than relying on predetermined plans. Learn about empiricism and complex work. Explore why trust is important for empiricism to thrive.