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Rami Koskinen
University of Vienna
  1.  20
    Synthetic Fictions: Turning Imagined Biological Systems Into Concrete Ones.Tarja Knuuttila & Rami Koskinen - 2020 - Synthese 198 (9):8233-8250.
    The recent discussion of fictional models has focused on imagination, implicitly considering fictions as something nonconcrete. We present two cases from synthetic biology that can be viewed as concrete fictions. Both minimal cells and alternative genetic systems are modal in nature: they, as well as their abstract cousins, can be used to study unactualized possibilia. We approach these synthetic constructs through Vaihinger’s notion of a semi-fiction and Goodman’s notion of semifactuality. Our study highlights the relative existence of such concrete fictions. (...)
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  2.  21
    Multiple Realizability as a Design Heuristic in Biological Engineering.Rami Koskinen - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 9 (1):15.
    Recently, several critics of the multiple realizability thesis have argued that philosophers have tended to accept the thesis on too weak grounds. On the one hand, the analytic challenge has problematized how philosophers have treated the multiple realization relation itself, claiming that assessment of the sameness of function and the relevant difference of realizers has been uncritical. On the other hand, it is argued that the purported evidence of the thesis is often left empirically unverified. This paper provides a novel (...)
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  3.  21
    Multiple Realizability and Biological Modality.Rami Koskinen - 2019 - Philosophy of Science 86 (5):1123-1133.
    Critics of multiple realizability have recently argued that we should concentrate solely on actual here-and-now realizations that are found in nature. The possibility of alternative, but unactualized, realizations is regarded as uninteresting because it is taken to be a question of pure logic or an unverifiable scenario of science fiction. However, in the biological context only a contingent set of realizations is actualized. Drawing on recent work on the theory of neutral biological spaces, the paper shows that we can have (...)
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  4.  11
    Exploring Biological Possibility Through Synthetic Biology.Tero Ijäs & Rami Koskinen - 2021 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 11 (2):1-17.
    This paper analyzes the notion of possibility in biology and demonstrates how synthetic biology can provide understanding on the modal dimension of biological systems. Among modal concepts, biological possibility has received surprisingly little explicit treatment in the philosophy of science. The aim of this paper is to argue for the importance of the notion of biological possibility by showing how it provides both a philosophically and biologically fruitful category as well as introducing a new practically grounded way for its assessment. (...)
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  5. Modal Inferences in Science: A Tale of Two Epistemologies.Ilmari Hirvonen, Rami Koskinen & Ilkka Pättiniemi - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):13823-13843.
    Recent epistemology of modality has seen a growing trend towards metaphysics-first approaches. Contrastingly, this paper offers a more philosophically modest account of justifying modal claims, focusing on the practices of scientific modal inferences. Two ways of making such inferences are identified and analyzed: actualist-manipulationist modality and relative modality. In AM, what is observed to be or not to be the case in actuality or under manipulations, allows us to make modal inferences. AM-based inferences are fallible, but the same holds for (...)
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  6.  36
    Epistemology of Modality: Between the Rock and the Hard Place.Ilkka Pättiniemi, Rami Koskinen & Ilmari Hirvonen - 2021 - Acta Philosophica Fennica.
    We review some of the major accounts in the current epistemology of modality and identify some shared issues that plague all of them. In order to provide insight into the nature of modal statements in science, philosophy, and beyond, a satisfactory epistemology of modality would need to be suitably applicable to practical and theoretical contexts by limited beings. However, many epistemologies of modality seem to work only when we have access to the kind of knowledge that is at least currently (...)
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  7.  18
    Elämä ja mahdollinen elämä - Filosofisia näkökulmia.Rami Koskinen & Tarja Knuuttila - 2017 - In Kari Enqvist, Ilari Hetemäki & Teija Tiilikainen (eds.), Kaikki vapaudesta. Helsinki, Suomi: pp. 247-259.
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  8. Could We Really Be Made of Swiss Cheese? Xenobiology as an Engineering Epistemology for Biological Realization.Rami Koskinen - 2020 - ChemBioChem 21.
    Besides having potential medical and biosafety applications, as well as challenging the foundations of biological engineering, xenobiology can also shed light on the epistemological and metaphysical questions that puzzle philosophers of science. This paper reviews this philosophical aspect of xenobiology, focusing on the possible multiple realizability of life. According to this hypothesis, what ultimately matters in understanding life is its function, not its particular building blocks. This is because there should, in theory, be many different ways to build the same (...)
     
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  9. Biologinen mahdollisuus ja synteettinen biologia.Tero Ijäs & Rami Koskinen - 2016 - In Ilkka Niiniluoto, Tuomas Tahko & Teemu Toppinen (eds.), Mahdollisuus. Helsinki, Suomi: pp. 79-86.
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