Variations in variation and selection: The ubiquity of the variation-and-selective-retention ratchet in emergent organizational complexity [Book Review]

Foundations of Science 8 (3):215-282 (2003)
The variation and selection form of explanationcan be prescinded from the evolutionary biologyhome ground in which it was discovered and forwhich it has been most developed. When this isdone, variation and selection explanations arefound to have potential application to a widerange of phenomena, far beyond the classicalbiological ground and the contemporaryextensions into epistemological domains. Itappears as the form of explanation most suitedto phenomena of fit. It is also found toparticipate in multiple interestingrelationships with other forms of explanation. We proceed with an examination of multiplekinds of phenomena, interrelationships withother members of the family of forms ofexplanation, and some novel applications evenwithin the home ground of evolutionary biology.
Keywords evolutionary biology  evolutionary epistemology  explanation  variation and selection
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DOI 10.1023/A:1025046917589
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Stephen Pratten (2013). Critical Realism and the Process Account of Emergence. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 43 (3):251-279.

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