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  1. Conceptual reductions, truthmaker reductive explanations, and ontological reductions.Savvas Ioannou - 2022 - Synthese 200 (4):1-26.
    According to conceptual reductive accounts, if properties of one domain can be conceptually reduced to properties of another domain, then the former properties are ontologically reduced to the latter properties. I will argue that conceptual reductive accounts face problems: either they do not recognise that many higher-level properties are correlated with multiple physical properties, or they do not clarify how we can discover new truthmakers of sentences about a higher-level property. Still, there is another way to motivate ontological reduction, the (...)
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  • Towards a theory of abduction based on conditionals.Rolf Pfister - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-30.
    Abduction is considered the most powerful, but also the most controversially discussed type of inference. Based on an analysis of Peirce’s retroduction, Lipton’s Inference to the Best Explanation and other theories, a new theory of abduction is proposed. It considers abduction not as intrinsically explanatory but as intrinsically conditional: for a given fact, abduction allows one to infer a fact that implies it. There are three types of abduction: Selective abduction selects an already known conditional whose consequent is the given (...)
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  • Lawful Humean explanations are not circular.Callum Duguid - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):6039-6059.
    A long-standing charge of circularity against regularity accounts of laws has recently seen a surge of renewed interest. The difficulty is that we appeal to laws to explain their worldly instances, but if these laws are descriptions of regularities in the instances then they are explained by those very instances. By the transitivity of explanation, we reach an absurd conclusion: instances of the laws explain themselves. While drawing a distinction between metaphysical and scientific explanations merely modifies the challenge rather than (...)
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  • Abduction − the context of discovery + underdetermination = inference to the best explanation.Mousa Mohammadian - 2021 - Synthese 198 (5):4205-4228.
    The relationship between Peircean abduction and the modern notion of Inference to the Best Explanation is a matter of dispute. Some philosophers, such as Harman :88–95, 1965) and Lipton, claim that abduction and IBE are virtually the same. Others, however, hold that they are quite different :503, 1998; Minnameier in Erkenntnis 60:75–105, 2004) and there is no link between them :419–442, 2009). In this paper, I argue that neither of these views is correct. I show that abduction and IBE have (...)
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  • Texting ECHO on historical data.Jan M. Zytkow - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):489-490.
  • Normative systems of discovery and logic of search.Jan M. Zytkow & Herbert A. Simon - 1988 - Synthese 74 (1):65 - 90.
    New computer systems of discovery create a research program for logic and philosophy of science. These systems consist of inference rules and control knowledge that guide the discovery process. Their paths of discovery are influenced by the available data and the discovery steps coincide with the justification of results. The discovery process can be described in terms of fundamental concepts of artificial intelligence such as heuristic search, and can also be interpreted in terms of logic. The traditional distinction that places (...)
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  • Five Duhemian theses.R. M. Yoshida - 1975 - Philosophy of Science 42 (1):29-45.
    In concluding section 2, chapter VI of part II of [6], Duhem claimed:... the physicist can never subject an isolated hypothesis to experimental test, but only a whole group of hypotheses...... when the experiment is in disagreement with his predictions, what he learns is that at least one of the hypotheses constituting this group is unacceptable and ought to be modified; but the experiment does not designate which one should be changed'.
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  • An Experiment-based Methodology for Classical Genetics and Molecular Biology.Hsiao-fan Yeh & Ruey-lin Chen - 2017 - Annals of the Japan Association for Philosophy of Science 26:39-60.
    This paper proposes an experiment-based methodology for both classical genetics and molecular biology by integrating Lindley Darden’s mechanism-centered approach and C. Kenneth Waters’s phenomenon-centered approach. We argue that the methodology basing on experiments offers a satisfactory account of the development of the two biological disciplines. The methodology considers discovery of new mechanisms, investigation of new phenomena, and construction of new theories together, in which experiments play a central role. Experimentation connects the three type of conduct, which work as both ends (...)
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  • The Higgs discovery as a diagnostic causal inference.Adrian Wüthrich - 2017 - Synthese 194 (2).
    I reconstruct the discovery of the Higgs boson by the ATLAS collaboration at CERN as the application of a series of inferences from effects to causes. I show to what extent such diagnostic causal inferences can be based on well established knowledge gained in previous experiments. To this extent, causal reasoning can be used to infer the existence of entities, rather than just causal relationships between them. The resulting account relies on the principle of causality, attributes only a heuristic role (...)
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  • A defense of Longino's social epistemology.K. Brad Wray - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (3):552.
    Though many agree that we need to account for the role that social factors play in inquiry, developing a viable social epistemology has proved to be difficult. According to Longino, it is the processes that make inquiry possible that are aptly described as "social," for they require a number of people to sustain them. These processes, she claims, not only facilitate inquiry, but also ensure that the results of inquiry are more than mere subjective opinions, and thus deserve to be (...)
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  • Discarded theories: the role of changing interests.K. Wray - 2019 - Synthese 196 (2):553-569.
    I take another look at the history of science and offer some fresh insights into why the history of science is filled with discarded theories. I argue that the history of science is just as we should expect it to be, given the following two facts about science: theories are always only partial representations of the world, and almost inevitably scientists will be led to investigate phenomena that the accepted theory is not fit to account for. Together these facts suggest (...)
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  • Physicality for Physicalists.D. Gene Witmer - 2018 - Topoi 37 (3):457-472.
    How should the “physical” in “physicalism” be understood? I here set out systematic criteria of adequacy, propose an account, and show how the account meets those criteria. The criteria of adequacy focus on the idea of rational management: to vindicate philosophical practice, the account must make it plausible that we can assess various questions about physicalism. The account on offer is dubbed the “Ideal Naturalist Physics” account, according to which the physical is that which appears in an ideal theory that (...)
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  • Natural classification: John S. Wilkins and Malte C. Ebach: The nature of classification: relationships and kinds in the natural sciences. London and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014, x+197pp, $60.00 HB. [REVIEW]Joeri Witteveen - 2014 - Metascience 24 (2):275-278.
    Writing a book about ‘natural classification’ is not a natural thing to do these days. As the authors of The Nature of Classification point out, classification as a stand-alone topic—separated from discussions of hypothesis testing, experimentation and concept formation—was all the rage in mid-nineteenth century philosophy of science, but interest has steadily dwindled ever since. In most twentieth century philosophy of science, classification was treated either as a pre-scientific endeavor, or as a product of theory-driven science. The general attitude is (...)
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  • Schaffner’s Model of Theory Reduction: Critique and Reconstruction.Rasmus Gr⊘Nfeldt Winther - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (2):119-142.
    Schaffner’s model of theory reduction has played an important role in philosophy of science and philosophy of biology. Here, the model is found to be problematic because of an internal tension. Indeed, standard antireductionist external criticisms concerning reduction functions and laws in biology do not provide a full picture of the limits of Schaffner’s model. However, despite the internal tension, his model usefully highlights the importance of regulative ideals associated with the search for derivational, and embedding, deductive relations among mathematical (...)
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  • Legal ritual.Peter A. Winn - 1991 - Law and Critique 2 (2):207-232.
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  • How to connect with the past.Catherine Wilson - 2000 - Metascience 9 (2):203-226.
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  • Psychology, or sociology of science?N. E. Wetherick - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):489-489.
  • Freud and sociobiology.N. E. Wetherick - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (2):319-320.
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  • Advanced sensorimotor intelligence in Cebus and Macaca.Gregory Charles Westergaard & Gene P. Sackett - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):609-610.
  • Towards an account of argumentation in science.Mark Weinstein - 1990 - Argumentation 4 (3):269-298.
    In this article it is argued that a complex model that includes Toulmin's functional account of argument, the pragma-dialectical stage analysis of argumentation offered by the Amsterdam School, and criteria developed in critical thinking theory, can be used to account for the normativity and field-dependence of argumentation in science. A pragma-dialectical interpretation of the four main elements of Toulmin's model, and a revised account of the double role of warrants, illuminates the domain specificity of scientific argumentation and the restrictions to (...)
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  • Unification: What is it, how do we reach and why do we want it?Erik Weber - 1999 - Synthese 118 (3):479-499.
    This article has three aims. The first is to give a partial explication of the concept of unification. My explication will be partial because I confine myself to unification of particular events, because I do not consider events of a quantitative nature, and discuss only deductive cases. The second aim is to analyze how unification can be reached. My third aim is to show that unification is an intellectual benefit. Instead of being an intellectual benefit unification could be an intellectual (...)
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  • Similarity and induction.Matthew Weber & Daniel Osherson - 2010 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (2):245-264.
    We advance a theory of inductive reasoning based on similarity, and test it on arguments involving mammal categories. To measure similarity, we quantified the overlap of neural activation in left Brodmann area 19 and the left ventral temporal cortex in response to pictures of different categories; the choice of of these regions is motivated by previous literature. The theory was tested against probability judgments for 40 arguments generated from 9 mammal categories and a common predicate. The results are interpreted in (...)
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  • Is Mathematics a Domain for Philosophers of Explanation?Erik Weber & Joachim Frans - 2017 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 48 (1):125-142.
    In this paper we discuss three interrelated questions. First: is explanation in mathematics a topic that philosophers of mathematics can legitimately investigate? Second: are the specific aims that philosophers of mathematical explanation set themselves legitimate? Finally: are the models of explanation developed by philosophers of science useful tools for philosophers of mathematical explanation? We argue that the answer to all these questions is positive. Our views are completely opposite to the views that Mark Zelcer has put forward recently. Throughout this (...)
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  • The Shoulders of Giants: A Case for Non-veritism about Expert Authority.Jamie Watson - 2018 - Topoi 37 (1):39-53.
    Among social epistemologists, having a certain proportion of reliably formed beliefs in a subject matter is widely regarded as a necessary condition for cognitive expertise. This condition is motivated by the idea that expert testimony puts subjects in a better position than non-expert testimony to obtain knowledge about a subject matter. I offer three arguments showing that veritism is an inadequate account of expert authority because the reliable access condition renders expertise incapable of performing its social role. I then develop (...)
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  • Causal regularities in the biological world of contingent distributions.C. Kenneth Waters - 1998 - Biology and Philosophy 13 (1):5-36.
    Former discussions of biological generalizations have focused on the question of whether there are universal laws of biology. These discussions typically analyzed generalizations out of their investigative and explanatory contexts and concluded that whatever biological generalizations are, they are not universal laws. The aim of this paper is to explain what biological generalizations are by shifting attention towards the contexts in which they are drawn. I argue that within the context of any particular biological explanation or investigation, biologists employ two (...)
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  • The Brownian Motion in Finance: An Epistemological Puzzle.Christian Walter - 2021 - Topoi 40 (4):1-17.
    While in medicine, comparison of the data supplied by a clinical syndrome with the data supplied by the biological system is used to arrive at the most accurate diagnosis, the same cannot be said of financial economics: the accumulation of statistical results that contradict the Brownian hypothesis used in risk modelling, combined with serious empirical problems in the practical implementation of the Black-Scholes-Merton model, the benchmark theory of mathematical finance founded on the Brownian hypothesis, has failed to change the Brownian (...)
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  • Beyond the Politics of Location: The Power of Argument in a Global Era.Sylvia Walby - 2000 - Feminist Theory 1 (2):189-206.
    Within recent feminist theorizing the significance of social location has been overestimated, while the power of argument has been underestimated. We do not need to retreat to notions of ‘story-telling’ as the strongest claim to knowledge possible by feminist analysis. Rather, we should draw on the power of argument. This article addresses some dilemmas in debates around the projects of recognition, redistribution and transformation, and the claims to knowledge made in each. Further, it argues for the integration of the concerns (...)
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  • On Leszek Nowak’s Conception of the Unity of Science.Mateusz Wajzer - forthcoming - Foundations of Science:1-18.
    The purpose of this essay is to present and analyse the basic assumptions of Leszek Nowak’s conception of the unity of science. According to Nowak, the unity of science is manifested in the common application of the method of idealisation in scientific research. In accordance with his conception, regardless of the discipline they represent, researchers go through the same stages in building a theory. Two key ones among them are: introducing idealising assumptions into the representation and then their concretisation. In (...)
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  • On the Existence and Uniqueness of the Scientific Method.Jorge Wagensberg - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (3):331-346.
    The ultimate utility of science is widely agreed upon: the comprehension of reality. But there is much controversy about what scientific understanding actually means, and how we should proceed in order to gain new scientific understanding. Is there a method for acquiring new scientific knowledge? Is this method unique and universal? There has been no shortage of proposals, but neither has there been a shortage of skeptics about these proposals. This article proffers for discussion a potential scientific method that aspires (...)
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  • Reductionism's demise: Cold comfort.Donald H. Wacome - 2004 - Zygon 39 (2):321-337.
    . Nonreductive physicalism, as opposed to reductionism, enjoys wide popularity by virtue of being regarded as comporting with the traditional image of human beings as free and ontologically unique without the difficulties of mind-body dualism. A consideration of reasons, both good and bad, for which reductionism is rejected suggests instead that the move to nonreductive physicalism does nothing to mitigate the implications of a physicalist account of human nature.
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  • Primate tool use: Parsimonious explanations make better science.Elisabetta Visalberghi - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):608-609.
  • Can a sociobiology of mind discard the will?Ian Vine - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (2):318-319.
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  • Operationalism and realism in psychometrics.Elina Vessonen - 2019 - Philosophy Compass 14 (10):e12624.
    Psychometrics is one of the main approaches to social scientific measurement. It is relied upon in drug testing, economic policymaking, recruitment, and other decision-making contexts. The first aim of this article is to introduce philosophers to key aspects of psychometrics, namely, classical test theory, item response theory, and construct validity. The second aim is to show how a debate on the nature of psychological attributes manifests in psychometrics. In this debate, realists claim that psychometric measures are indicators of independently existing (...)
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  • Conceptual engineering and operationalism in psychology.Elina Vessonen - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):10615-10637.
    This paper applies conceptual engineering to deal with four objections that have been levelled against operationalism in psychology. These objections are: operationalism leads to harmful proliferation of concepts, operationalism goes hand-in-hand with untenable antirealism, operationalism leads to arbitrariness in scientific concept formation, and operationalism is incompatible with the usual conception of scientific measurement. Relying on a formulation of three principles of conceptual engineering, I will argue that there is a useful form of operationalism that does not fall prey to these (...)
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  • The relation of biology to physics and chemistry — an evaluation of some recent issues in the philosophy of science.W. J. Van Der Steen - 1970 - Acta Biotheoretica 19 (3-4):186-211.
  • The classification of disciplines in biology: A plea for pluralism.W. J. van der Steen - 1980 - Acta Biotheoretica 29 (2):95-100.
    Pluralism is a sound strategy in classifying disciplines of biology. The relevance of a particular classification depends on various methodological issues, on the way in which the scientist's problems are specified, and on factual matters.
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  • Some comments on “reduction”.W. J. Van Der Steen - 1975 - Acta Biotheoretica 24 (3-4):163-167.
    Something is wrong with current discussions about theory reduction. The question of whether higher level theories are reducible to lower level theories cannot be posed in a sensible way if methodological principles that are needed to evaluate scientific theories are disregarded. If this is recognized, the problem looses much of its alleged importance.
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  • Once more with feeling: Genes, mind and culture.Pierre L. van den Berghe - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (2):317-318.
  • Nagelian Reduction Beyond the Nagel Model.Raphael van Riel - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (3):353-375.
    Nagel’s official model of theory-reduction and the way it is represented in the literature are shown to be incompatible with the careful remarks on the notion of reduction Nagel gave while developing his model. Based on these remarks, an alternative model is outlined which does not face some of the problems the official model faces. Taking the context in which Nagel developed his model into account, it is shown that the way Nagel shaped his model and, thus, its well-known deficiencies, (...)
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  • Dinnaga and the Raven paradox.Joerg Tuske - 1998 - Journal of Indian Philosophy 26 (5):387-403.
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  • Truth and best explanation.Raimo Tuomela - 1985 - Erkenntnis 22 (1-3):271 - 299.
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  • Shattering the Myth of Semmelweis.Dana Tulodziecki - 2013 - Philosophy of Science 80 (5):1065-1075.
    The case of Semmelweis has been well known since Hempel. More recently, it has been revived by Peter Lipton, Donald Gillies, Alexander Bird, Alex Broadbent, and Raphael Scholl. While these accounts differ on what exactly the case of Semmelweis shows, they all agree that Semmelweis was an excellent reasoner. This widespread agreement has also given rise to a puzzle: why Semmelweis’s views were rejected for so long. I aim to dissolve both this puzzle and the standard view of Semmelweis by (...)
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  • Principles of Reasoning in Historical Epidemiology.Dana Tulodziecki - 2012 - Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 18 (5):968-973.
    The case of John Snow has long been important to epidemiologists and public health officials. However, despite the fact that there have been many discussions about the various aspects of Snow’s case, there has been virtually no discussion about what guided Snow’s reasoning in his coming to believe his various conclusions about cholera. Here, I want to take up this question in some detail and show that there are a number of specific principles of reasoning that played a crucial role (...)
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  • Gradations of Guessing: Preliminary Sketches and Suggestions.Mark Tschaepe - 2013 - Contemporary Pragmatism 10 (2):135-154.
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  • Belief attribution in science: Folk psychology under theoretical stress.J. D. Trout - 1991 - Synthese 87 (June):379-400.
    Some eliminativists have predicted that a developed neuroscience will eradicate the principles and theoretical kinds (belief, desire, etc.) implicit in our ordinary practices of mental state attribution. Prevailing defenses of common-sense psychology infer its basic integrity from its familiarity and instrumental success in everyday social commerce. Such common-sense defenses charge that eliminativist arguments are self-defeating in their folk psychological appeal to the belief that eliminativism is true. I argue that eliminativism is untouched by this simple charge of inconsistency, and introduce (...)
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  • Cognition as cause.Michael Tomasello - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):607-608.
  • Being aware of consciousness and cultures.Henry Tobin & A. W. Logue - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (2):316-317.
  • Conceptual and Logical Aspects of the ‘New’ Evolutionary Epistemology.Paul Thompson - 1988 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 18 (sup1):235-253.
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  • Extending explanatory coherence.Paul Thagard - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):490-502.
  • Explanatory coherence (plus commentary).Paul Thagard - 1989 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 12 (3):435-467.
    This target article presents a new computational theory of explanatory coherence that applies to the acceptance and rejection of scientific hypotheses as well as to reasoning in everyday life, The theory consists of seven principles that establish relations of local coherence between a hypothesis and other propositions. A hypothesis coheres with propositions that it explains, or that explain it, or that participate with it in explaining other propositions, or that offer analogous explanations. Propositions are incoherent with each other if they (...)
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