Methodological individualism, explanation, and invariance

Philosophy of the Social Sciences 36 (4):440-463 (2006)
This article examines methodological individualism in terms of the theory that invariance under intervention is the signal feature of generalizations that serve as a basis for causal explanation. This theory supports the holist contention that macro-level generalizations can explain, but it also suggests a defense of methodological individualism on the grounds that greater range of invariance under intervention entails deeper explanation. Although this individualist position is not threatened by multiple-realizability, an argument for it based on rational choice theory is called into question by experimental results concerning preference reversals. Key Words: methodological individualism • mechanisms • explanation • invariance • preference reversal.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1177/0048393106293455
 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: 16,667
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

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

32 ( #100,264 of 1,726,564 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #289,822 of 1,726,564 )

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.