David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In this paper I defend the idea that there is a sense in which it is meaningful and useful to talk about objective understanding, and that to characterize that notion it is necessary to formulate an account of explanation that makes reference to the beliefs and epistemic goals of the participants in a cognitive enterprise. Using the framework for belief revision developed by Isaac Levi, I analyze the conditions that information must fulfill to be both potentially explanatory and epistemically valuable to an inquiring agent and to a scientific community. To be potentially explanatory, the information must state the relations of probabilistic relevance that the explanans bares to the explanandum. But a potential explanation con only be a bona fide explanation if it becomes part of inquiry, that is, if an agent or a group of agents can see any value in it for their cognitive purposes. I provide a way to evaluate the epistemic value of a potential explanation as a function of its credibility and its informational content.
|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
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Stephen R. Grimm (2008). Explanatory Inquiry and the Need for Explanation. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 59 (3):481-497.
Elmar J. Kremer (1997). The Cosmological Argument Without the Principle of Sufficient Reason. Faith and Philosophy 14 (1):62-70.
Robrecht Vanderbeeken (2004). Models of Intentional Explanation. Philosophical Explorations 7 (3):233 – 246.
Daniel Whiting (2012). Epistemic Value and Achievement. Ratio 25 (2):216-230.
Sheralce Brindell (2000). Trustworthiness in Explanation: The Obligation to Explain Well. Science and Engineering Ethics 6 (3):351-364.
Richard Swinburne (1990). The Limits of Explanation. Philosophy 27 (Supplement):177 - 193.
Zvonimir Čuljak (1995). Some Aspects of Explanation in Boškovič. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 9 (1):73 – 84.
Michael Strevens (2008). Depth: An Account of Scientific Explanation. Harvard University Press.
Michael Strevens (2013). No Understanding Without Explanation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (3):510-515.
Martijn Blaauw (2008). Epistemic Value, Achievements, and Questions. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 82 (1):43-57.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads45 ( #41,469 of 1,139,979 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #28,047 of 1,139,979 )
How can I increase my downloads?