Progress, as defined by Tyler Cowen and Patrick Collison, as “the combination of economic, technological, scientific, cultural, and organizational advancement that has transformed our lives and raised standards of living over the past couple of centuries”.
Progress is ‘pre-paradigmatic’; for researchers to conduct ‘normal research’, a research agenda must be set. This is a first attempt at thinking about the relevant literature to inherit from in thinking about scientific and technological progress. Besides agenda-setting, progress studies requires a set of accepted tools, methods, and procedures, which is beyond the scope of this document.
This is a living rough draft; it currently represents a very particular view of the world, and I’d love for it to be shored up as a fuller curriculum, possibly under different organizing taxonomies. The vision is for this document to evolve into a wiki of ‘pointers’ pointing to others’ work on these topics, starting with more thorough literature reviews on specific questions.