What constraints are there on the pursuit of knowledge?

The main constraints on the pursuit of knowledge are ethical constraints on what may be done to acquire knowledge, particularly if others may be harmed in the process.

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On some level, there is an economic boundary that sometimes limits the pursuit of knowledge. We often hear, for example, about various human illnesses which scientists would like to research if only they could gain funding for their work. Scientific research is often quite expensive, and without needed funds, there are many areas of human understanding that remain unclear or misunderstood.

The common values of a society also limit the pursuit of knowledge. While no one complains about scientists who perform various experiments on bacteria, people do tend to be more vocal about the use of live animals being used for scientific exploration. Can scientists learn about the human body and various human conditions by performing similar experiments on animals? Certainly. However, using animals for such experiments is not viewed favorably by at least a segment of society, and the pursuit of knowledge is therefore limited by societal values.

The pursuit of knowledge is also limited at times by an...

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