Empirical Success or Explanatory Success: What Does Current Scientific Realism Need to Explain?

Philosophy of Science 72 (5):1076-1087 (2005)
Against the well-known objection that in the history of science there are many theories that are successful but false, Psillos offers a three-pronged defense of <span class='Hi'>scientific</span> <span class='Hi'>realism</span> as the best explanation for the <span class='Hi'>success</span> of science. Focusing on these, I criticize Psillos’ defense, arguing that each prong is weakened when we recognize that according to realist rebuttals of the underdetermination argument and versions of empiricism, realists are committed to accounting for the <span class='Hi'>explanatory</span> <span class='Hi'>success</span> of theories, not their mere <span class='Hi'>empirical</span> adequacy or instrumental reliability. I conclude by indicating how ‘explanationist’ <span class='Hi'>realism</span> might be recast to accommodate my arguments.
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DOI 10.1086/508958
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Samuel Schindler (2008). Use-Novel Predictions and Mendeleev's Periodic Table: Response To. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 39 (2):265-269.

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