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  1. Model Building and Problem Solving: A Case from Libor Market Derivatives.Giulia Miotti - 2019 - Topoi 40 (4):1-9.
    In my paper I focus on the growth of knowledge in finance from an heuristic viewpoint and I propose the analysis of two different knowledge-advancing strategies usually adopted at the frontier of knowledge, i.e. problem-solving and model-building. I show how these two strategies, even though both effective in the short-run, nonetheless provide descriptions of the target object and which are different in their descriptive and knowledge-advancing depth. In order to do so, I propose a case study borrowed from the modelling (...)
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  • Model Building and Problem Solving: A Case from Libor Market Derivatives.Giulia Miotti - 2021 - Topoi 40 (4):783-791.
    In my paper I focus on the growth of knowledge in finance from an heuristic viewpoint and I propose the analysis of two different knowledge-advancing strategies usually adopted at the frontier of knowledge, i.e. problem-solving and model-building. I show how these two strategies, even though both effective in the short-run, nonetheless provide descriptions of the target object and which are different in their descriptive and knowledge-advancing depth. In order to do so, I propose a case study borrowed from the modelling (...)
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  • Are Evolutionary Debunking Arguments Really Self-Defeating?Fabio Sterpetti - 2015 - Philosophia 43 (3):877-889.
    Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are defined as arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. Recently, Helen De Cruz and her co-authors supported the view that EDAs are self-defeating: if EDAs claim that human arguments are not justified, because the evolutionary origin of the beliefs which figure in such arguments undermines those beliefs, and EDAs themselves are human arguments, then EDAs are not justified, and we should not accept their conclusions about the fact that human (...)
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  • Inferences by Parallel Reasoning in Islamic Jurisprudence: Al-Shīrāzī’s Insights Into the Dialectical Constitution of Meaning and Knowledge.Shahid Rahman, Muhammad Iqbal & Youcef Soufi - 2019 - Cham, Switzerland: Springer Verlag.
    This monograph proposes a new way of studying the different forms of correlational inference, known in the Islamic jurisprudence as qiyās. According to the authors’ view, qiyās represents an innovative and sophisticated form of dialectical reasoning that not only provides new epistemological insights into legal argumentation in general but also furnishes a fine-grained pattern for parallel reasoning which can be deployed in a wide range of problem-solving contexts and does not seem to reduce to the standard forms of analogical reasoning (...)
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  • Science as Social Existence: Heidegger and the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge.Jeff Kochan - 2017 - Cambridge, UK: Open Book Publishers.
    REVIEW (1): "Jeff Kochan’s book offers both an original reading of Martin Heidegger’s early writings on science and a powerful defense of the sociology of scientific knowledge (SSK) research program. Science as Social Existence weaves together a compelling argument for the thesis that SSK and Heidegger’s existential phenomenology should be thought of as mutually supporting research programs." (Julian Kiverstein, in Isis) ---- REVIEW (2): "I cannot in the space of this review do justice to the richness and range of Kochan's (...)
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  • Mathematical Beauty, Understanding, and Discovery.Carlo Cellucci - 2015 - Foundations of Science 20 (4):339-355.
    In a very influential paper Rota stresses the relevance of mathematical beauty to mathematical research, and claims that a piece of mathematics is beautiful when it is enlightening. He stops short, however, of explaining what he means by ‘enlightening’. This paper proposes an alternative approach, according to which a mathematical demonstration or theorem is beautiful when it provides understanding. Mathematical beauty thus considered can have a role in mathematical discovery because it can guide the mathematician in selecting which hypothesis to (...)
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  • Mathematics and Finance: Some Philosophical Remarks.Emiliano Ippoliti - 2020 - Topoi 40 (4):771-781.
    I examine the role that mathematics plays in understanding and modelling finance, especially stock markets, and how philosophy affects it. To this end, I explore how mathematics penetrates finance via physics, constructing a ‘financial physics’, and I outline the philosophical backgrounds of this process, in particular the ‘philosophy of equilibrium’ and that of critical points or ‘out-of-equilibrium’. I discuss the main characteristics and a few weaknesses of these mathematizations of financial systems, notably econometrics and econophysics, and I compare the two (...)
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  • Diagrams in Mathematics.Carlo Cellucci - 2019 - Foundations of Science 24 (3):583-604.
    In the last few decades there has been a revival of interest in diagrams in mathematics. But the revival, at least at its origin, has been motivated by adherence to the view that the method of mathematics is the axiomatic method, and specifically by the attempt to fit diagrams into the axiomatic method, translating particular diagrams into statements and inference rules of a formal system. This approach does not deal with diagrams qua diagrams, and is incapable of accounting for the (...)
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  • Definition in Mathematics.Carlo Cellucci - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 8 (3):605-629.
    In the past century the received view of definition in mathematics has been the stipulative conception, according to which a definition merely stipulates the meaning of a term in other terms which are supposed to be already well known. The stipulative conception has been so absolutely dominant and accepted as unproblematic that the nature of definition has not been much discussed, yet it is inadequate. This paper examines its shortcomings and proposes an alternative, the heuristic conception.
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  • Is Mathematics Problem Solving or Theorem Proving?Carlo Cellucci - 2017 - Foundations of Science 22 (1):183-199.
    The question that is the subject of this article is not intended to be a sociological or statistical question about the practice of today’s mathematicians, but a philosophical question about the nature of mathematics, and specifically the method of mathematics. Since antiquity, saying that mathematics is problem solving has been an expression of the view that the method of mathematics is the analytic method, while saying that mathematics is theorem proving has been an expression of the view that the method (...)
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  • Undecidability of the Spectral Gap: An Epistemological Look.Emiliano Ippoliti & Sergio Caprara - 2021 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 52 (1):157-170.
    The results of Cubitt et al. on the spectral gap problem add a new chapter to the issue of undecidability in physics, as they show that it is impossible to decide whether the Hamiltonian of a quantum many-body system is gapped or gapless. This implies, amongst other things, that a reductionist viewpoint would be untenable. In this paper, we examine their proof and a few philosophical implications, in particular ones regarding models and limitative results. In more detail, we examine the (...)
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  • Reconnecting Logic with Discovery.Carlo Cellucci - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):869-880.
    According to a view going back to Plato, the aim of philosophy is to acquire knowledge and there is a method to acquire knowledge, namely a method of discovery. In the last century, however, this view has been completely abandoned, the attempt to give a rational account of discovery has been given up, and logic has been disconnected from discovery. This paper outlines a way of reconnecting logic with discovery.
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  • Scientific Discovery Reloaded.Emiliano Ippoliti - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):847-856.
    The way scientific discovery has been conceptualized has changed drastically in the last few decades: its relation to logic, inference, methods, and evolution has been deeply reloaded. The ‘philosophical matrix’ moulded by logical empiricism and analytical tradition has been challenged by the ‘friends of discovery’, who opened up the way to a rational investigation of discovery. This has produced not only new theories of discovery, but also new ways of practicing it in a rational and more systematic way. Ampliative rules, (...)
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  • Aristotle on Science as Problem Solving.Diana Quarantotto - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):857-868.
    The paper provides an interpretation of Aristotle’s view on scientific inquiry as problem solving. It tackles passages where Aristotle emphasises the role that the problem-solving activity has in science, and where he describes the history of humans’ problem-solving activity and the historical development of natural science as a problem-solving activity. Further, the paper examines Aristotle’s practice of raising, assessing and solving problems as well as the heuristic procedures he employs to move from ignorance to scientific knowledge. Finally, it raises a (...)
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  • Manufacturing a Mathematical Group: A Study in Heuristics.Emiliano Ippoliti - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):963-971.
    I examine the way a relevant conceptual novelty in mathematics, that is, the notion of group, has been constructed in order to show the kinds of heuristic reasoning that enabled its manufacturing. To this end, I examine salient aspects of the works of Lagrange, Cauchy, Galois and Cayley. In more detail, I examine the seminal idea resulting from Lagrange’s heuristics and how Cauchy, Galois and Cayley develop it. This analysis shows us how new mathematical entities are generated, and also how (...)
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  • Scientific Discovery as a Topic for Philosophy of Science: Some Personal Reflections.Tom Nickles - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):841-845.
    This is a brief, personal retrospective on developments in the treatment of scientific discovery by philosophers, since about 1970.
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  • Introduction: Scientific Discovery and Inference.Emiliano Ippoliti & Tom Nickles - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):835-839.
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  • Evidence Amalgamation, Plausibility, and Cancer Research.Marta Bertolaso & Fabio Sterpetti - 2019 - Synthese 196 (8):3279-3317.
    Cancer research is experiencing ‘paradigm instability’, since there are two rival theories of carcinogenesis which confront themselves, namely the somatic mutation theory and the tissue organization field theory. Despite this theoretical uncertainty, a huge quantity of data is available thanks to the improvement of genome sequencing techniques. Some authors think that the development of new statistical tools will be able to overcome the lack of a shared theoretical perspective on cancer by amalgamating as many data as possible. We think instead (...)
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  • Formalizing Darwinism, Naturalizing Mathematics.Fabio Sterpetti - 2015 - Paradigmi. Rivista di Critica Filosofica 33 (2):133-160.
    In the last decades two different and apparently unrelated lines of research have increasingly connected mathematics and evolutionism. Indeed, on the one hand different attempts to formalize darwinism have been made, while, on the other hand, different attempts to naturalize logic and mathematics have been put forward. Those researches may appear either to be completely distinct or at least in some way convergent. They may in fact both be seen as supporting a naturalistic stance. Evolutionism is indeed crucial for a (...)
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  • Scientific Realism, Adaptationism and the Problem of the Criterion.Fabio Sterpetti - 2015 - Kairos 13 (1):7-45.
    Scientific Realism (SR) has three crucial aspects: 1) the centrality of the concept of truth, 2) the idea that success is a reliable indicator of truth, and 3) the idea that the Inference to the Best Explanation is a reliable inference rule. It will be outlined how some realists try to overcome the difficulties which arise in justifying such crucial aspects relying on an adaptationist view of evolutionism, and why such attempts are inadequate. Finally, we will briefly sketch some of (...)
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  • Sulla concezione noetica del progresso scientifico.Fabio Sterpetti - 2017 - Paradigmi. Rivista di Critica Filosofica 35 (3):135-155.
    Le principali concezioni del progresso scientifico sono tre: la concezione epistemica, secondo cui il progresso si verifica quando si verifica un incremento della conoscenza; la concezione semantica, secondo cui il progresso si verifica quando vi è un incremento delle verità; la concezione problem-solving, secondo cui il progresso si verifica quando si verifica un incremento del numero dei problemi che si è in grado di risolvere. La concezione epistemica è ritenuta la più compatibile con una prospettiva realista. Di recente, Dellsén ha (...)
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  • Le implicazioni metafilosofiche del darwinismo.Fabio Sterpetti - 2016 - In E. Gagliasso, F. Morganti & A. Passariello (eds.), Percorsi evolutivi. Lezioni di filosofia della biologia. Milano MI, Italia: pp. 31-47.
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  • Mathematical Knowledge and Naturalism.Fabio Sterpetti - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (1):225-247.
    How should one conceive of the method of mathematics, if one takes a naturalist stance? Mathematical knowledge is regarded as the paradigm of certain knowledge, since mathematics is based on the axiomatic method. Natural science is deeply mathematized, and science is crucial for any naturalist perspective. But mathematics seems to provide a counterexample both to methodological and ontological naturalism. To face this problem, some naturalists try to naturalize mathematics relying on Darwinism. But several difficulties arise when one tries to naturalize (...)
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  • The Noetic Account of Scientific Progress and the Factivity of Understanding.Fabio Sterpetti - 2018 - In David Danks & Emiliano Ippoliti (eds.), Building Theories. Heuristics and Hypotheses in Sciences. Cham: Springer Verlag.
    There are three main accounts of scientific progress: 1) the epistemic account, according to which an episode in science constitutes progress when there is an increase in knowledge; 2) the semantic account, according to which progress is made when the number of truths increases; 3) the problem-solving account, according to which progress is made when the number of problems that we are able to solve increases. Each of these accounts has received several criticisms in the last decades. Nevertheless, some authors (...)
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  • Mathematical Knowledge, the Analytic Method, and Naturalism.Fabio Sterpetti - 2018 - In Sorin Bangu (ed.), Naturalizing Logico-Mathematical Knowledge. Approaches from Philosophy, Psychology and Cognitive Science. New York, Stati Uniti: pp. 268-293.
    This chapter tries to answer the following question: How should we conceive of the method of mathematics, if we take a naturalist stance? The problem arises since mathematical knowledge is regarded as the paradigm of certain knowledge, because mathematics is based on the axiomatic method. Moreover, natural science is deeply mathematized, and science is crucial for any naturalist perspective. But mathematics seems to provide a counterexample both to methodological and ontological naturalism. To face this problem, some authors tried to naturalize (...)
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  • The Pursuit of Knowledge and the Problem of the Unconceived Alternatives.Fabio Sterpetti & Marta Bertolaso - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):881-892.
    In the process of scientific discovery, knowledge ampliation is pursued by means of non-deductive inferences. When ampliative reasoning is performed, probabilities cannot be assigned objectively. One of the reasons is that we face the problem of the unconceived alternatives: we are unable to explore the space of all the possible alternatives to a given hypothesis, because we do not know how this space is shaped. So, if we want to adequately account for the process of knowledge ampliation, we need to (...)
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  • Heuristics and Inferential Microstructures: The Path to Quaternions.Emiliano Ippoliti - 2019 - Foundations of Science 24 (3):411-425.
    I investigate the construction of the mathematical concept of quaternion from a methodological and heuristic viewpoint to examine what we can learn from it for the study of the advancement of mathematical knowledge. I will look, in particular, at the inferential microstructures that shape this construction, that is, the study of both the very first, ampliative inferential steps, and their tentative outcomes—i.e. small ‘structures’ such as provisional entities and relations. I discuss how this paradigmatic case study supports the recent approaches (...)
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  • Reconnecting Logic with Discovery.Carlo Cellucci - 2017 - Topoi:1-12.
    According to a view going back to Plato, the aim of philosophy is to acquire knowledge and there is a method to acquire knowledge, namely a method of discovery. In the last century, however, this view has been completely abandoned, the attempt to give a rational account of discovery has been given up, and logic has been disconnected from discovery. This paper outlines a way of reconnecting logic with discovery.
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  • Logique, Raisonnement et Rationalité.Matías Osta-Vélez - 2014 - Dissertation, Université de Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
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  • The Discovery/Justification Context Dichotomy Within Formal and Computational Models of Scientific Theories: A Weakening of the Distinction Based on the Perspective of Non-Monotonic Logics.Jorge A. Morales & Mauricio Molina Delgado - 2016 - Journal of Applied Non-Classical Logics 26 (4):315-335.
    The present paper analyses the topic of scientific discovery and the problem of the existence of a logical framework involved in such endeavour. We inquire how several non-monotonic logic frameworks and other formalisms can account for such a task. In the same vein, we analyse some key aspects of the historical and theoretical debate surrounding scientific discovery, in particular, the context of discovery and context of justification context distinction. We present an argument concerning the weakening of the discovery/justification context dichotomy (...)
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