Explaining with Simulations: Why Visual Representations Matter

Perspectives on Science 26 (2):213-238 (2018)
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Mathematical models are often expected to provide not only predictions about the phenomenon that they represent, but also explanations. These explanations are answers to why-questions and particularly answers to why the predicted phenomenon should occur. For instance, models can be used to calculate when the next total solar eclipse will happen, and then to explain why it will take place on July 2, 2019. In this regard we can obtain explanations from a model if we can solve the model equations which govern the phenomenon under study. But some equations have no explicit solution or are too complicated to solve. In these cases it is difficult for a...



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Julie Jebeile
University of Bern

References found in this work

How Scientific Models Can Explain.Alisa Bokulich - 2011 - Synthese 180 (1):33 - 45.
Values and Uncertainties in the Predictions of Global Climate Models.Eric Winsberg - 2012 - Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 22 (2):111-137.
Holism, Entrenchment, and the Future of Climate Model Pluralism.Johannes Lenhard & Eric Winsberg - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 41 (3):253-262.
Knowing with Images: Medium and Message.John Kulvicki - 2010 - Philosophy of Science 77 (2):295-313.

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