Quantitative parsimony

In this paper, I motivate the view that quantitative parsimony is a theoretical virtue: that is, we should be concerned not only to minimize the number of kinds of entities postulated by our theories (i. e. maximize qualitative parsimony), but we should also minimize the number of entities postulated which fall under those kinds. In order to motivate this view, I consider two cases from the history of science: the postulation of the neutrino and the proposal of Avogadro's hypothesis. I also consider two issues concerning how a principle of quantitative parsimony should be framed.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/bjps/48.3.329
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,774
External links
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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Uriah Kriegel (2015). Thought and Thing: Brentano's Reism as Truthmaker Nominalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (3):153-180.
Ross P. Cameron (2007). The Contingency of Composition. Philosophical Studies 136 (1):99-121.
Sam Baron (2014). The Priority of the Now. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly:0-0.
Jonathan Schaffer (2014). What Not to Multiply Without Necessity. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (4):644-664.
Louis deRosset (2010). Getting Priority Straight. Philosophical Studies 149 (1):73 - 97.

View all 20 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

92 ( #35,916 of 1,727,294 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

13 ( #51,778 of 1,727,294 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.