David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy of the Social Sciences 38 (3):314-333 (2008)
Philosophers of the social sciences are increasingly convinced that macro-and micro-explanations are complementary. Whereas macro-explanations are broad, micro-explanations are deep. I distinguish between weak and strong complementarity: Strongly complementary explanations improve one another when integrated, weakly complementary explanations do not. To demonstrate the explanatory autonomy of different levels of explanation, explanatory pluralists mostly presuppose the weak form of complementarity. By scrutinizing the notions of explanatory depth and breadth, I argue that macro- and micro-accounts of the same phenomenon are more often strongly complementary. This invites a revision of the pluralist position in which integration promotes explanatory progress. Key Words: explanatory pluralism social science explanatory depth explanatory breadth mechanism.
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Christopher Clarke (forthcoming). The Explanatory Virtue of Abstracting Away From Idiosyncratic and Messy Detail. Philosophical Studies:1-21.
Frank Hindriks (2013). The Location Problem in Social Ontology. Synthese 190 (3):413-437.
Caterina Marchionni (2013). Playing with Networks: How Economists Explain. [REVIEW] European Journal for Philosophy of Science 3 (3):331-352.
Lei Zhong (2012). An Explanatory Challenge to Moral Reductionism. Theoria 78 (4):309-325.
Ivan A. Boldyrev (2012). Philosophy of Science or Science and Technology Studies? Economic Methodology and Auction Theory. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 26 (3):289-307.
Similar books and articles
Michael Strevens (forthcoming). Special-Science Autonomy and the Division of Labor. In Mark Couch & Jessica Pfeifer (eds.), The Philosophy of Philip Kitcher.
Cindy Stern (1978). On the Alleged Extensionality of "Causal Explanatory Contexts". Philosophy of Science 45 (4):614-625.
Brad Weslake (2010). Explanatory Depth. Philosophy of Science 77 (2):273-294.
Jean Lachapelle (2000). Cultural Evolution, Reductionism in the Social Sciences, and Explanatory Pluralism. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 30 (3):331-361.
Carla Fehr (2006). Explanations of the Evolution of Sex: A Plurality of Local Mechanisms. In Stephen H. Kellert, Helen E. Longino & C. Kenneth Waters (eds.), Scientific Pluralism, Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science. University of Minnesota Press 167-189.
Jeroen van Bouwel, Erik Weber & Leen de Vreese (2011). Indispensability Arguments in Favour of Reductive Explanations. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 42 (1):33-46.
Jeroen van Bouwel (2010). Explanatory Pluralism in the Medical Sciences: Theory and Practice. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 31 (5):371-390.
Ingo Brigandt (2013). Explanation in Biology: Reduction, Pluralism, and Explanatory Aims. Science and Education 22 (1):69-91.
Erik Weber & Jeroen Van Bouwel (2002). Symposium on Explanations and Social Ontology 3: Can We Dispense with Structural Explanations of Social Facts? Economics and Philosophy 18 (2):259-275.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads50 ( #82,401 of 1,793,093 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #137,784 of 1,793,093 )
How can I increase my downloads?