And as the common logic, which governs things by syllogism, belongs not only to the natural sciences, but to all, so our new logic, which proceeds by induction, comprehends every thing.

—Francis Bacon, 1620

If Francis Bacon was right, then I’m in trouble. Bacon represents a long tradition of thinking that regards the sciences as unified by a shared underlying logic. One could just as well point to similar statements from August Comte, William Whewell, or Carl Hempel. More recent commenters have regarded the sciences as unified only by their inherent disunity—individual disciplines like physics, biology, or psychology, on this view, might maintain a comparatively integrated local discourse, but they do not cohere into a unified whole. Either view prompts questions about the utility of a meso-scale category like “natural sciences.”

An editorial transition is an opportunity to reflect on a journal’s mission and scope. HSNS is an...

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