Fiora Salis
University of York
What are theoretical models and how do they contribute to a scientific understanding of reality? In this chapter, I will argue that models are akin to fictional stories in that they are human-made artifacts created through the imaginative activities of scientists. And I will suggest that the sort of imagination involved in modeling is make-believe and that this is constrained in three main ways which, together, enable knowledge of reality. I will conclude by addressing recent criticisms against the fiction view of models and the relevance of scientific imagination in modeling put forward by Weisberg and Knuuttila.
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