David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
It is sometimes said that simulation can serve as epistemic substitute for experimentation. Such a claim might be suggested by the fast-spreading use of computer simulation to investigate phenomena not accessible to experimentation (in astrophysics, ecology, economics, climatology, etc.). But what does that mean? The paper starts with a clarification of the terms of the issue and then focuses on two powerful arguments for the view that simulation and experimentation are ‘epistemically on a par’. One is based on the claim that, in experimentation, no less than in simulation, it is not the system under study that is manipulated but a system that ‘stands-in’ for it. The other one highlights the pervasive use of models in experimentation. It will be argued that these arguments, as compelling as they might seem, are each based on a mistaken interpretation of experimentation and that, far from simulation and experimentation being epistemically on a par, they do not have the same epistemic function, do not produce the same kind of epistemic results.
|Keywords||simulation experimentation experiment substitute surrogate modeling epistemic function|
|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
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Margaret Morrison (2009). Models, Measurement and Computer Simulation: The Changing Face of Experimentation. Philosophical Studies 143 (1):33 - 57.
Eric Winsberg (2003). Simulated Experiments: Methodology for a Virtual World. Philosophy of Science 70 (1):105-125.
Ronald N. Giere (2009). Is Computer Simulation Changing the Face of Experimentation? Philosophical Studies 143 (1):59 - 62.
Johannes Lenhard (2006). Surprised by a Nanowire: Simulation, Control, and Understanding. Philosophy of Science 73 (5):605-616.
Jane Maienschein (1986). Arguments for Experimentation in Biology. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1986:180 - 195.
Friedrich Steinle (1997). Entering New Fields: Exploratory Uses of Experimentation. Philosophy of Science 64 (4):74.
Kevin Elliott (2007). Varieties of Exploratory Experimentation in Nanotoxicology. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 29 (3):313 - 336.
Wendy S. Parker (2009). Does Matter Really Matter? Computer Simulations, Experiments, and Materiality. Synthese 169 (3):483 - 496.
LeRoy Walters (1974). Ethical Issues in Experimentation on the Human Fetus. Journal of Religious Ethics 2 (1):33 - 54.
Fritz Rohrlich (1990). Computer Simulation in the Physical Sciences. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1990:507 - 518.
Axel Gelfert (2011). Scientific Models, Simulation, and the Experimenter's Regress. In Paul Humphreys & Cyrille Imbert (eds.), Models, Simulations, and Representations. Routledge.
Maureen O'Malley (2007). Exploratory Experimentation and Scientific Practice: Metagenomics and the Proteorhodopsin Case. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 29 (3):337 - 360.
Emanuel A. Schegloff (2004). Experimentation or Observation? Of the Self Alone or the Natural World? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 27 (2):271-272.
Added to index2012-02-05
Total downloads83 ( #14,317 of 1,096,425 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #231,754 of 1,096,425 )
How can I increase my downloads?