David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 24 (1):31-43 (2010)
Whereas an inference (deductive as well as inductive) is usually viewed as being valid in virtue of its argument form, the present paper argues that scientific reasoning is material inference, i.e., justified in virtue of its content. A material inference is licensed by the empirical content embodied in the concepts contained in the premises and conclusion. Understanding scientific reasoning as material inference has the advantage of combining different aspects of scientific reasoning, such as confirmation, discovery, and explanation. This approach explains why these different aspects (including discovery) can be rational without conforming to formal schemes, and why scientific reasoning is local, i.e., justified only in certain domains and contingent on particular empirical facts. The notion of material inference also fruitfully interacts with accounts of conceptual change and psychological theories of concepts
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Rudolf Carnap (1937). The Logical Syntax of Language. London, K. Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co., Ltd..
Lindley Darden (1991). Theory Change in Science: Strategies From Mendelian Genetics. Oxford University Press.
Nelson Goodman (1983). Fact, Fiction, and Forecast. Harvard University Press.
Paul Griffiths (2002). What is Innateness? The Monist 85 (1):70-85.
Citations of this work BETA
Julian Reiss (2012). Causation in the Sciences: An Inferentialist Account. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (4):769-777.
Jan Derry (2013). Can Inferentialism Contribute to Social Epistemology? Journal of Philosophy of Education 47 (2):222-235.
Jean-Sébastien Bolduc (2012). Behavioural Ecology's Ethological Roots. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (3):674-683.
Similar books and articles
Alan C. Love (2012). Formal and Material Theories in Philosophy of Science: A Methodological Interpretation. In Henk W. de Regt (ed.), Epsa Philosophy of Science: Amsterdam 2009. Springer. 175--185.
James Blachowicz (1989). Discovery and Ampliative Inference. Philosophy of Science 56 (3):438-462.
Gregory W. Dawes (2013). Belief is Not the Issue: A Defence of Inference to the Best Explanation. Ratio 26 (1):62-78.
Mark Day & George S. Botterill (2008). Contrast, Inference and Scientific Realism. Synthese 160 (2):249 - 267.
Alexander Bird (2009). Inductive Knowledge. In D. Pritchard (ed.), Routledge Companion to Epistemology. Routledge.
John D. Norton (2003). A Material Theory of Induction. Philosophy of Science 70 (4):647-670.
Igor Douven (2002). Testing Inference to the Best Explanation. Synthese 130 (3):355 - 377.
P. D. Magnus (2008). Demonstrative Induction and the Skeleton of Inference. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 22 (3):303 – 315.
Added to index2009-08-18
Total downloads110 ( #11,631 of 1,413,358 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #30,088 of 1,413,358 )
How can I increase my downloads?