Prediction in selectionist evolutionary theory
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Evolutionary theory has often been faulted for not making predictions, let alone predictions that are dangerous, surprising, and correct. I build on work by Deborah Mayo, Elliot Sober, and John Worrall to develop an account of the conditions necessary for a theory to make predictions. This account is applied to two cases from evolutionary theory: parallel evolutionary change in *E. coli*, and the origin of eukaryotic cells through endosymbiosis. Selectionist evolutionary theory can thus express the theoretical virtue of predictive capacity in addition to the virtues of explanatory unification and model-fitting.
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