Browse Definitions :
Definition

falsifiability

Falsifiability is the capacity for some proposition, statement, theory or hypothesis to be proven wrong. That capacity is an essential component of the scientific method and hypothesis testing. In a scientific context, falsifiability is sometimes considered synonymous with testability.

In hypothesis testing, the null hypothesis usually states the contrary of the experimental or alternative hypothesis. The null hypothesis provides the basis of falsifiability, describing what the outcome would demonstrate, should the prediction of the hypothesis not be supported by the study. The researcher's hypothesis might predict, for example, that fewer hours working correlates to lower employee productivity. The null hypothesis would be that fewer hours working is correlated with higher productivity, or that there is no change when employees spend less time at work.

The requirement of falsifiability means that conclusions cannot be drawn from simple observation of a particular phenomenon. The black swan problem is an illustration: If a man lives his life seeing only white swans and never knows that there are any non-white swans, he might assume that all swans are white. For falsifiability, it isn't necessary to know that there are black swans but simply to understand that the statement "All swans are white" would be disproven should a single non-white swan exist.

The Austrian philosopher and scientist Karl Popper (1902-1994) introduced the concept of falsifiability in his writings on the demarcation problem, which explored the difficulty of separating science from pseudo-science.

This was last updated in January 2017

Continue Reading About falsifiability

SearchCompliance
  • OPSEC (operations security)

    OPSEC (operations security) is a security and risk management process and strategy that classifies information, then determines ...

  • smart contract

    A smart contract is a decentralized application that executes business logic in response to events.

  • compliance risk

    Compliance risk is an organization's potential exposure to legal penalties, financial forfeiture and material loss, resulting ...

SearchSecurity
  • threat modeling

    Threat modeling is a procedure for optimizing application, system or business process security by identifying objectives and ...

  • distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack

    A distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack is one in which multiple compromised computer systems attack a target, such as a ...

  • social engineering

    Social engineering is an attack vector that relies heavily on human interaction and often involves manipulating people into ...

SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • change control

    Change control is a systematic approach to managing all changes made to a product or system.

  • disaster recovery (DR)

    Disaster recovery (DR) is an organization's ability to respond to and recover from an event that affects business operations.

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

SearchStorage
  • bare-metal cloud

    Bare-metal cloud is a public cloud service that offers dedicated hardware resources without any installed operating systems or ...

  • race condition

    A race condition is an undesirable situation that occurs when a device or system attempts to perform two or more operations at ...

  • storage security

    Storage security is the group of parameters and settings that make storage resources available to authorized users and trusted ...

Close