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Wim J. Steen [18]Wim J. Van Der Steen [6]
  1. Wim J. Van Der Steen (2000). Science, Religion, and Experience. International Philosophical Quarterly 40 (3):339-349.
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  2. Wim J. Van der Steen (1998). Forging Links Between Philosophy, Ethics, and the Life Sciences: A Tale of Disciplines and Trenches. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 20 (2):233 - 248.
    Philosophy of medicine and its daughter bioethics seldom undertake a critical analysis of live medical science. That is a serious shortcoming since some forms of bias in medical science have a negative impact on health care. Most notably, many areas of medicine focus on a restricted area of biology to the exclusion of ecology. Ecological thinking should lead to fundamental changes in medicine and the philosophy of medicine.
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  3. Wim J. Van Der Steen (1996). Screening-Off and Natural Selection. Philosophy of Science 63 (1):115 - 121.
    Sober (1992) and Brandon et al. (1994) disagree about the role of screening-off in the appraisal of theories of natural selection. Some problems disregarded by them are unearthed in this discussion note.
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  4. Wim J. Steen (1995). Egoism and Altruism in Ethics: Dispensing with Spurious Generality. [REVIEW] Journal of Value Inquiry 29 (1):31-44.
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  5. Hans-Jorg Rheinberger & Wim J. Van der Steen (1994). Experiment, Differenz Schrift: Zur Geschichte Epistemiscber/Dinge. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 16 (2):355.
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  6. Wim J. Van der Steen (1994). New Ways to Look at Fitness. History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 16 (3):479 - 492.
    Many authors have argued that the core of evolutionary biology as represented by the catchphrase 'The fittest survive' is tautological. Concerning the fitness concept of population genetics it is easy to rebut this charge by a proper explication of the term 'survival'. In biology and in the philosophy of biology, various fitness concepts over and above that of population genetics have been elaborated. These concepts, which are called 'supervenient' by some philosophers, have a limited usefulness. On some interpretations they do (...)
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  7. Richard M. Burian & Wim J. Steen (1993). Introduction. Biology and Philosophy 8 (3):255-257.
  8. Wim J. Steen (1993). Additional Notes on Integration. Biology and Philosophy 8 (3):349-352.
  9. Wim J. Steen (1993). Towards Disciplinary Disintegration in Biology. Biology and Philosophy 8 (3):259-275.
    Interdisciplinary integration has fundamental limitations. This is not sufficiently realized in science and in philosophy. Concerning scientific theories there are many examples of pseudo-integration which should be unmasked by elementary philosophical analysis. For example, allegedly over-arching theories of stress which are meant to unite biology and psychology, upon analysis, turn out to represent terminological rather than substantive unity. They should be replaced by more specific, local theories. Theories of animal orientation, likewise, have been formulated in unduly general terms. A natural (...)
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  10. Patsy Haccou & Wim J. Steen (1992). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology. Acta Biotheoretica 40 (4).
    One of the major criticisms of optimal foraging theory (OFT) is that it is not testable. In discussions of this criticism opposing parties have confused methodological concepts and used meaningless biological concepts. In this paper we discuss such misunderstandings and show that OFr has an empirically testable, and even well-confirmed, general core theory. One of our main conclusions is that specific model testing should not be aimed at proving optimality, but rather at identifying the context in which certain types of (...)
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  11. Wim J. Steen (1992). Ethics, Animals and the Environment: A Review of Recent Books. [REVIEW] Acta Biotheoretica 40 (4).
    Animal liberation ethics and environmental ethics have recently come of age. Concerning concrete moral rules considered by researchers in these areas there is much consensus. Highly general theories formulated to justify the rules are more problematic. However, the search for such theories may well be misguided.
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  12. Wim J. Steen & Bert Musschenga (1992). The Issue of Generality in Ethics. Journal of Value Inquiry 26 (4):511-524.
    Does ethics have adequate general theories? Our analysis shows that this question does not have a straightforward answer since the key terms are ambiguous. So we should not concentrate on the answer but on the question itself. “Ethics” stands for many things, but we let that pass. “Adequate” may refer to varied arrays of methodological principles which are seldom fully articulated in ethics. “General” is a notion with at least three meanings. Different kinds of generality may be at cross-purposes, so (...)
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  13. Wim J. Van Der Steen & Harmke Kamminga (1991). Laws and Natural History in Biology. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 42 (4):445 - 467.
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  14. Wim J. Steen (1990). Interdisciplinary Integration in Biology? An Overview. Acta Biotheoretica 38 (1).
    Philosophical theories about reduction and integration in science are at variance with what is happenign in science. A realistic approach to science show that possibilities for reduction and integration are limited. The classical ideal of a unified science has since long been rejected in philosophy. But the current emphasis on interdisciplinary integration in philosophy and in science shows that it survives in a different guise. It is necessary to redress the balance, specifically in biology. Methodological analysis shows that many of (...)
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  15. Wim J. Steen & Peter B. Sloep (1988). Mere Generality is Not Enough. Biology and Philosophy 3 (2):217-219.
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  16. Peter B. Sloep & Wim J. Steen (1987). Syntacticism Versus Semanticism: Another Attempt at Dissolution. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 2 (1):33-41.
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  17. Peter B. Sloep & Wim J. Steen (1987). The Nature of Evolutionary Theory: The Semantic Challenge. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 2 (1):1-15.
  18. Wim J. Steen (1986). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology V. The Import of Supervenience. Acta Biotheoretica 35 (3).
    Rosenberg has rightly argued that fitness is supervenient. But he has wrongly assumed that this makes The fittest survive nontautologous. Supervenience makes strict reduction impossible. It sheds light on disputes concerning the testability of evolutionary theory.
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  19. Wim J. Steen (1986). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology VI. The Force of Evolutionary Epistemology. Acta Biotheoretica 35 (3).
    Evolutionary epistemology takes various forms. As a philosophical discipline, it may use analogies by borrowing concepts from evolutionary biology to establish new foundations. This is not a very successful enterprise because the analogies involved are so weak that they hardly have explanatory force. It may also veil itself with the garbs of biology. Proponents of this strategy have only produced irrelevant theories by transforming epistemology's concepts beyond recognition. Sensible theories about knowledge and biology should presuppose that various long-standing problems concerning (...)
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  20. Wim J. Steen & Bart Voorzanger (1986). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology VII. The Species Plague. Acta Biotheoretica 35 (3).
    Various philosophers and evolutionary biologists have recently defended the thesis that species are individuals rather than sets. A decade of debates, however, did not suffice to settle the matter. Conceptual analysis shows that many of the key terms involved (individuation, evolutionary species, spatiotemporal restrictedness, individual) are ambiguous. Current disagreements should dissolve once this is recognized. Explication of the concepts involved leads to new programs for philosophical research. It could also help biology by showing how extant controversies concerning evolution may have (...)
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  21. Wim J. Steen & Martin Scholten (1985). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology IV. Stress and Stress Tolerance, an Excercise in Definitions. Acta Biotheoretica 34 (1).
    Grime (1979) in a recently developed theory distinguished three basic plant strategies: stress tolerance,ruderality and competition. He relates them to environments characterized in terms of stress and disturbance. Classifications of strategies and environments both are ultimately defined in terms of production. This tends to make the theory tautological. If the theory is to make sense, environments had better be defined in independent terms.
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  22. Wim J. Steen & Bart Voorzanger (1984). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology III. Selection and Levels of Organization. Acta Biotheoretica 33 (3).
    Apparently factual disagreement on the level(s) at which selection operates often results from different interpretations of the term selection. Attempts to resolve terminological problems must come to grips with a dilemma: a narrow interpretation of selection may lead to a restricted view on evolution; a broader, less precise, definition may wrongly suggest that selection is the centre of a unified, integrated theory of evolution. Different concepts of selection, therefore, should carefully be kept apart.
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  23. Wim J. Steen (1983). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology I. Testability and Tautologies. Acta Biotheoretica 32 (3).
    The impact of philosophy of science on biology is slight. Evolutionary biology, however, is nowadays an exception. The status of the neo-Darwinian (synthetic) theory of evolution is seriously challenged from a methodological perspective. However, the methodology used in the relevant discussions is plainly defective. A correct application of methodology to evolutionary theory leads to the following conclusions. (a) The theory of natural selection (the core of neo-Darwinism) is unfalsifiable in a strict sense of the term. This, however, does not militate (...)
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  24. Wim J. Steen (1983). Methodological Problems in Evolutionary Biology II. Appraisal of Arguments Against Adaptationism. Acta Biotheoretica 32 (3).
    Methodological analysis shows that the concepts of fitness and adaptation are more complex than the literature suggests. Various arguments against adaptationism are inadequate since they are couched in terms of unduly simplistic notions.
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