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  1. Darwin’s Arguments in Favour of Natural Selection and Against Special Creationism.Robert Nola - 2013 - Science & Education 22 (2):149-171.
  • Abductive Conditionals as a Test Case for Inferentialism.Patricia Mirabile & Igor Douven - 2020 - Cognition 200 (C):104232.
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  • A Logic for Best Explanations.Jared Millson & Christian Straßer - 2019 - Journal of Applied Non-Classical Logics 29 (2):184-231.
    Efforts to formalize qualitative accounts of inference to the best explanation (IBE) confront two obstacles: the imprecise nature of such accounts and the unusual logical properties that explanations exhibit, such as contradiction-intolerance and irreflexivity. This paper aims to surmount these challenges by utilising a new, more precise theory that treats explanations as expressions that codify defeasible inferences. To formalise this account, we provide a sequent calculus in which IBE serves as an elimination rule for a connective that exhibits many of (...)
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  • Bayes Factors All the Way: Toward a New View of Coherence and Truth.Lydia McGrew - 2016 - Theoria 82 (4):329-350.
    A focus on the conjunction of the contents of witness reports and on the coherence of their contents has had negative effects on the epistemic clarity of the Bayesian coherence literature. Whether or not increased coherence of witness reports is correlated with higher confirmation for some H depends upon the hypothesis in question and upon factors concerning the confirmation and independence of the reports, not directly on the positive relevance of the contents to each other. I suggest that Bayesians should (...)
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  • Inference to the Best Explanation, Coherence and Other Explanatory Virtues.Adolfas Mackonis - 2013 - Synthese 190 (6):975-995.
    This article generalizes the explanationist account of inference to the best explanation. It draws a clear distinction between IBE and abduction and presents abduction as the first step of IBE. The second step amounts to the evaluation of explanatory power, which consist in the degree of explanatory virtues that a hypothesis exhibits. Moreover, even though coherence is the most often cited explanatory virtue, on pain of circularity, it should not be treated as one of the explanatory virtues. Rather, coherence should (...)
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  • The ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Mechanics of the Rejection of (Climate) Science: Simulating Coherence by Conspiracism.Stephan Lewandowsky, John Cook & Elisabeth Lloyd - 2018 - Synthese 195 (1):175-196.
    Science strives for coherence. For example, the findings from climate science form a highly coherent body of knowledge that is supported by many independent lines of evidence: greenhouse gas emissions from human economic activities are causing the global climate to warm and unless GHG emissions are drastically reduced in the near future, the risks from climate change will continue to grow and major adverse consequences will become unavoidable. People who oppose this scientific body of knowledge because the implications of cutting (...)
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  • Most Frugal Explanations in Bayesian Networks.Johan Kwisthout - 2015 - Artificial Intelligence 218 (C):56-73.
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  • Public Reception of Climate Science: Coherence, Reliability, and Independence.Ulrike Hahn, Adam J. L. Harris & Adam Corner - 2016 - Topics in Cognitive Science 8 (1):180-195.
    Possible measures to mitigate climate change require global collective actions whose impacts will be felt by many, if not all. Implementing such actions requires successful communication of the reasons for them, and hence the underlying climate science, to a degree that far exceeds typical scientific issues which do not require large-scale societal response. Empirical studies have identified factors, such as the perceived level of consensus in scientific opinion and the perceived reliability of scientists, that can limit people's trust in science (...)
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  • Probability and the Explanatory Virtues: Figure 1.Clark Glymour - 2015 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (3):591-604.
    Recent literature in philosophy of science has addressed purported notions of explanatory virtues—‘explanatory power’, ‘unification’, and ‘coherence’. In each case, a probabilistic relation between a theory and data is said to measure the power of an explanation, or degree of unification, or degree of coherence. This essay argues that the measures do not capture cases that are paradigms of scientific explanation, that the available psychological evidence indicates that the measures do not capture judgements of explanatory power, and, finally, that the (...)
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  • Inference to the Best Explanation: Does It Track Truth?David H. Glass - 2012 - Synthese 185 (3):411-427.
    In the form of inference known as inference to the best explanation there are various ways to characterise what is meant by the best explanation. This paper considers a number of such characterisations including several based on confirmation measures and several based on coherence measures. The goal is to find a measure which adequately captures what is meant by 'best' and which also yields the truth with a high degree of probability. Computer simulations are used to show that the overlap (...)
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  • Coherence, Explanation, and Hypothesis Selection.David H. Glass - 2021 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 72 (1):1-26.
    This paper provides a new approach to inference to the best explanation based on a new coherence measure for comparing how well hypotheses explain the evidence. It addresses a number of criticisms of the use of probabilistic measures in this context by Clark Glymour, including limitations of earlier work on IBE. Computer experiments are used to show that the new approach finds the truth with a high degree of accuracy in hypothesis selection tasks and that in some cases its accuracy (...)
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  • Inference to the Best Explanation and Mechanisms in Medicine.Stefan Dragulinescu - 2016 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 37 (3):211-232.
    This article considers the prospects of inference to the best explanation as a method of confirming causal claims vis-à-vis the medical evidence of mechanisms. I show that IBE is actually descriptive of how scientists reason when choosing among hypotheses, that it is amenable to the balance/weight distinction, a pivotal pair of concepts in the philosophy of evidence, and that it can do justice to interesting features of the interplay between mechanistic and population level assessments.
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  • The Ecological Rationality of Explanatory Reasoning.Igor Douven - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 79:1-14.
  • Optimizing Group Learning: An Evolutionary Computing Approach.Igor Douven - 2019 - Artificial Intelligence 275:235-251.
  • Plausibility and Reasonable Doubt in the Simonshaven Case.Marcello Di Bello - 2020 - Topics in Cognitive Science 12 (4):1200-1204.
    I comment on two analyses of the Simonshaven case: one by Prakken (2019), based on arguments, and the other by van Koppen and Mackor (2019), based on scenarios (or stories, narratives). I argue that both analyses lack a clear account of proof beyond a reasonable doubt because they lack a clear account of the notion of plausibility. To illustrate this point, I focus on the defense argument during the appeal trial and show that both analyses face difficulties in modeling key (...)
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  • Assessing Theories: The Coherentist Approach.Peter Brössel - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (3):593-623.
    In this paper we show that the coherence measures of Olsson (J Philos 94:246–272, 2002), Shogenji (Log Anal 59:338–345, 1999), and Fitelson (Log Anal 63:194–199, 2003) satisfy the two most important adequacy requirements for the purpose of assessing theories. Following Hempel (Synthese 12:439–469, 1960), Levi (Gambling with truth, New York, A. A. Knopf, 1967), and recently Huber (Synthese 161:89–118, 2008) we require, as minimal or necessary conditions, that adequate assessment functions favor true theories over false theories and true and informative (...)
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  • A Priori Abduction.David Botting - 2013 - Argumentation 27 (2):167-181.
    While “All events have a cause” is a synthetic statement making a factual claim about the world, “All effects have a cause” is analytic. When we take an event as an effect, no inference is required to deduce that it has a cause since this is what it means to be an effect. Some examples often given in the literature as examples of abduction work in the same way through semantic facts that follow from the way our beliefs represent those (...)
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  • On the Coherence of Higher-Order Beliefs.Stefan Schubert & Erik J. Olsson - 2012 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 50 (1):112-135.
    Let us by ‘first-order beliefs’ mean beliefs about the world, such as the belief that it will rain tomorrow, and by ‘second-order beliefs’ let us mean beliefs about the reliability of first-order, belief-forming processes. In formal epistemology, coherence has been studied, with much ingenuity and precision, for sets of first-order beliefs. However, to the best of our knowledge, sets including second-order beliefs have not yet received serious attention in that literature. In informal epistemology, by contrast, sets of the latter kind (...)
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  • Coherence, Striking Agreement, and Reliability: On a Putative Vindication of the Shogenji Measure.Michael Schippers - 2014 - Synthese 191 (15):3661-3684.
    Striving for a probabilistic explication of coherence, scholars proposed a distinction between agreement and striking agreement. In this paper I argue that only the former should be considered a genuine concept of coherence. In a second step the relation between coherence and reliability is assessed. I show that it is possible to concur with common intuitions regarding the impact of coherence on reliability in various types of witness scenarios by means of an agreement measure of coherence. Highlighting the need to (...)
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  • Comparing Probabilistic Measures of Explanatory Power.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (5):813-829.
    Recently, in attempting to account for explanatory reasoning in probabilistic terms, Bayesians have proposed several measures of the degree to which a hypothesis explains a given set of facts. These candidate measures of "explanatory power" are shown to have interesting normative interpretations and consequences. What has not yet been investigated, however, is whether any of these measures are also descriptive of people’s actual explanatory judgments. Here, I present my own experimental work investigating this question. I argue that one measure in (...)
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  • Competing Accounts of Contrastive Coherence.Michael Schippers - 2016 - Synthese 193 (10).
    The proposition that Tweety is a bird coheres better with the proposition that Tweety has wings than with the proposition that Tweety cannot fly. This relationship of contrastive coherence is the focus of the present paper. Based on recent work in formal epistemology we consider various possibilities to model this relationship by means of probability theory. In a second step we consider different applications of these models. Among others, we offer a coherentist interpretation of the conjunction fallacy.
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  • Coherentist Theories of Epistemic Justification.Jonathan Kvanvig - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  • Kohärent/Kohärenz; Kohärenz, Explanatorische; Kohärenz, Probabilistische.Stephan Hartmann - 2010 - In J. Mittelstraß (ed.), Enzyklopädie der Wissenschaftsphilosophie und analytischen Philosophie vol. 4. Metzler. pp. 250-258.
    Erklärungstheoretisch bestimmter Kohärenzbegriff.
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  • Grading the Quality of Evidence of Mechanisms.Stefan Dragulinescu - unknown - Dissertation, University of Kent
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  • Robustness, Diversity of Evidence, and Probabilistic Independence.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2015 - In Mäki, Ruphy, Schurz & Votsis (eds.), Recent Developments in the Philosophy of Science: EPSA13 Helsinki. Springer. pp. 305-316.
    In robustness analysis, hypotheses are supported to the extent that a result proves robust, and a result is robust to the extent that we detect it in diverse ways. But what precise sense of diversity is at work here? In this paper, I show that the formal explications of evidential diversity most often appealed to in work on robustness – which all draw in one way or another on probabilistic independence – fail to shed light on the notion of diversity (...)
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