Rose, D., Machery, E., Stich, S., Alai, M., Angelucci, A., Berniūnas, R., Buchtel, E. E., Chatterjee, A., Cheon, H., Cho, I.-R., Cohnitz, D., Cova, F., Dranseika, V., Lagos, Á. E., Ghadakpour, L., Grinberg, M., Hannikainen, I., Hashimoto, T., Horowitz, A., Hristova, E., Jraissati, Y., Kadreva, V., Karasawa, K., Kim, H., Kim, Y., Lee, M., Mauro, C., Mizumoto, M., Moruzzi, S., Olivola, C. Y., Ornelas, J., Osimani, B., Romero, C., Rosas, A., Sangoi, M., Sereni, A., Songhorian, S., Sousa, P., Struchiner, N., Tripodi, V., Usui, N., del Mercado, A. V., Volpe, G., Vosgerichian, H. A., Zhang, X. and Zhu, J. (2019), Nothing at Stake in Knowledge. Noûs. 53(1): 224–247.
Do stakes affect ordinary knowledge ascriptions? Epistemic contextualists and interest relative invariantist claim that stakes do play a role in ordinary knowledge ascription. But results from a large scale cross-cultural study we conducted suggested otherwise. We collected data on people’s judgments in response to high and low stakes versions of “Bank Cases”. The cases were translated into 14 different languages and data was collected from 4504 people across nineteen sites, spanning fifteen countries. In every site sampled, we find that stakes do not play a role in ordinary knowledge ascriptions. In light of the surprising cross-cultural robustness of our findings, we suggest that the scales tilt against epistemic contextualism and interest-relative invariantism and that a version of classical invariantism about knowledge should perhaps be taken seriously.