The strategy of “the strategy of model building in population biology”

Biology and Philosophy 21 (5):607-621 (2006)
Abstract
In this essay, I argue for four related claims. First, Richard Levins’ classic “The Strategy of Model Building in Population Biology” was a statement and defense of theoretical population biology growing out of collaborations between Robert MacArthur, Richard Lewontin, E. O. Wilson, and others. Second, I argue that the essay served as a response to the rise of systems ecology especially as pioneered by Kenneth Watt. Third, the arguments offered by Levins against systems ecology and in favor of his own methodological program are best construed as “pragmatic”. Fourth, I consider limitations of Levins’ arguments given contemporary population biology.
Keywords Richard Levins  Robert MacArthur  Population biology  Ecology  Systems ecology  Model building  Tradeoffs
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John Matthewson (2011). Trade-Offs in Model-Building: A More Target-Oriented Approach. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 42 (2):324-333.
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John Matthewson (2011). Trade-Offs in Model-Building: A More Target-Oriented Approach. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 42 (2):324-333.
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