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  1. Ontic Structural Realism and the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles.Peter Ainsworth - 2011 - Erkenntnis 75 (1):67-84.
    Recently, there has been a debate as to whether or not the principle of the identity of indiscernibles (the PII) is compatible with quantum physics. It is also sometimes argued that the answer to this question has implications for the debate over the tenability of ontic structural realism (OSR). The central aim of this paper is to establish what relationship there is (if any) between the PII and OSR. It is argued that one common interpretation of OSR is undermined if (...)
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  2. The Third Path to Structural Realism.Peter M. Ainsworth - 2012 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 2 (2):307-320.
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  3. What is Ontic Structural Realism?Peter Mark Ainsworth - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 41 (1):50-57.
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  4. What is Ontic Structural Realism?Peter Mark Ainsworth - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 41 (1):50-57.
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  5. Basic Concepts of Structuralism.Holger Andreas & Frank Zenker - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (S8):1367-1372.
    Primarily addressed to readers unfamiliar with the structuralist approach in philosophy of science, we introduce the basic concepts that the contributions to this special issue presuppose. By means of examples, we briefly review set-theoretic structures and predicates, the potential and actual models of an empirical theory, intended applications, as well as links and specializations that are applied, among others, in reconstructing the empirical claim associated with a theory element.
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  6. Structural Realism and the Nature of Structure.Jonas R. Becker Arenhart & Otávio Bueno - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 5 (1):111-139.
    Ontic Structural Realism is a version of realism about science according to which by positing the existence of structures, understood as basic components of reality, one can resolve central difficulties faced by standard versions of scientific realism. Structures are invoked to respond to two important challenges: one posed by the pessimist meta-induction and the other by the underdetermination of metaphysics by physics, which arises in non-relativistic quantum mechanics. We argue that difficulties in the proper understanding of what a structure is (...)
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  7. Towards Structural Realism.Jonathan Bain - manuscript
    In the debate over scientific realism, attention has been given recently to a realist position referred to as structural realism. In this essay, I offer a version of this position and indicate how it addresses two standard forms of underdetermination argument posed by the anti-realist.
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  8. Category-Theoretic Structure and Radical Ontic Structural Realism.Jonathan Bain - 2013 - Synthese 190 (9):1621-1635.
    Radical Ontic Structural Realism (ROSR) claims that structure exists independently of objects that may instantiate it. Critics of ROSR contend that this claim is conceptually incoherent, insofar as, (i) it entails there can be relations without relata, and (ii) there is a conceptual dependence between relations and relata. In this essay I suggest that (ii) is motivated by a set-theoretic formulation of structure, and that adopting a category-theoretic formulation may provide ROSR with more support. In particular, I consider how a (...)
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  9. Representations of Spacetime: Formalism and Ontological Commitment.Jonathan Stanley Bain - 1998 - Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh
    This dissertation consists of two parts. The first is on the relation between formalism and ontological commitment in the context of theories of spacetime, and the second is on scientific realism. The first part begins with a look at how the substantivalist/relationist debate over the ontological status of spacetime has been influenced by a particular mathematical formalism, that of tensor analysis on differential manifolds . This formalism has motivated the substantivalist position known as manifold substantivalism. Chapter 1 focuses on the (...)
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  10. Structuralist Theory of Science: Focal Issues, New Results.Wolfgang Balzer & Carlos Ulises Moulines (eds.) - 1996 - De Gruyter.
  11. An Empiricist Criterion of Meaning.Yann Benétreau-Dupin - 2011 - South African Journal of Philosophy 30 (2):95-108.
    The meaning of scientific propositions is not always expressible in terms of observable phenomena. Such propositions involve generalizations, and also terms that are theoretical constructs. I study here how to assess the meaning of scientific propositions, that is, the specific import of theoretical terms. Empiricists have expressed a concern that scientific propositions, and theoretical terms, should always be, to some degree, related to observable consequences. We can see that the former empiricist criterion of meaning only implies for theoretical terms not (...)
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  12. Reconstructing the Upward Path to Structural Realism.Beni Majid Davoody - forthcoming - European Journal for Philosophy of Science:1-17.
    In his Analysis of Matter, Russell advocated an epistemic form of Epistemic Structural Realism which held that our knowledge of the external world is structural. This approach has been criticised by M.H.A. Newman, 137–148, 1928) and Stathis Psillos, S13–S24, 2001). The paper aims to reconstruct Russell’s version of ESR, and defend its experimental and philosophical plausibility. The basic assumption is that without getting a viable experimental handle on the linkage between the structure of perceptions and causal structure of the stimuli, (...)
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  13. Structural Realist Account of the Self.Majid Davoody Beni - 2016 - Synthese 193 (12):3727-3740.
    In this paper, inspired by the late twentieth century developments in philosophy of science, I propose an ontological scheme to accommodate the scientifically-informed anti-substantivalist views of the self. I call the position structural realist theory of the self. More specifically, I argue that SRS provides a middle ground for bringing a metaphysical reconciliation between the two recurring, and apparently competing forms of such anti-substantivalist views, i.e., eliminativism and pluralism. The notion of the structural self, as the underpinning pattern that is (...)
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  14. Ontic Structural Realism and Modality.Nora Berenstain & James Ladyman - 2012 - In Elaine Landry & Dean Rickles (eds.), Structural Realism: Structure, Object, and Causality. Springer.
    There is good reason to believe that scientific realism requires a commitment to the objective modal structure of the physical world. Causality, equilibrium, laws of nature, and probability all feature prominently in scientific theory and explanation, and each one is a modal notion. If we are committed to the content of our best scientific theories, we must accept the modal nature of the physical world. But what does the scientific realist’s commitment to physical modality require? We consider whether scientific realism (...)
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  15. Scientific Structuralism, Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science.Alisa Bokulich & Peter Bokulich (eds.) - 2011 - Springer.
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  16. Epistemic Structural Realism and Poincare's Philosophy of Science.Katherine Brading & Elise Crull - unknown
    Recent discussions of structuralist approaches to scientific theories have stemmed primarily from Worrall's, in which he defends a position whose historical roots he attributes to Poincare. In the renewed debate inspired by Worrall, it is thus not uncommon to find Poincare's name associated with various structuralist positions. However, Poincare's structuralism is deeply entwined with both his conventionalism and his idealism, and in this paper we explore the nature of these dependencies. What comes out in the end is not only a (...)
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  17. Don Ross, James Ladyman, and Harold Kincaid (Eds) Scientific Metaphysics.Katherine Brading & Xavi Lanao - 2014 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 65 (4):899-903.
  18. Scientific Structuralism: Presentation and Representation.Katherine Brading & Elaine Landry - 2006 - Philosophy of Science 73 (5):571-581.
    This paper explores varieties of scientific structuralism. Central to our investigation is the notion of `shared structure'. We begin with a description of mathematical structuralism and use this to point out analogies and disanalogies with scientific structuralism. Our particular focus is the semantic structuralist's attempt to use the notion of shared structure to account for the theory-world connection, this use being crucially important to both the contemporary structural empiricist and realist. We show why minimal scientific structuralism is, at the very (...)
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  19. A Minimal Construal of Scientific Structuralism.Katherine Brading & Elaine Landry - unknown
    The focus of this paper is the recent revival of interest in structuralist approaches to science and, in particular, the structural realist position in philosophy of science . The challenge facing scientific structuralists is three-fold: i) to characterize scientific theories in ‘structural’ terms, and to use this characterization ii) to establish a theory-world connection (including an explanation of applicability) and iii) to address the relationship of ‘structural continuity’ between predecessor and successor theories. Our aim is to appeal to the notion (...)
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  20. Underdetermination as a Path to Structural Realism.Katherine Brading & Alexander Skiles - 2012 - In Elaine Landry & Dean Rickles (eds.), Structural Realism: Structure, Object, and Causality. Springer.
  21. Panpsychism and Structural Realism.Godehard Brüntrup - 2011 - In Michael Blamauer (ed.), The Mental as Fundamental. New Perspectives on Panpsychism. pp. 15-35.
    Paper on structural realism and how its problems lend support to some kind of panpsychism.
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  22. Leszek Nowak.Krzysztof Brzechczyn - 2009 - Polish Journal of Philosophy 3 (2):7-8.
  23. Structural Empiricism, Again.Otávio Bueno - 2011 - In Alisa Bokulich & Peter Bokulich (eds.), Scientific Structuralism. Springer Science+Business Media. pp. 81--103.
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  24. Structuralism and Information.Otávio Bueno - 2010 - Metaphilosophy 41 (3):365-379.
    Abstract: According to Luciano Floridi (2008) , informational structural realism provides a framework to reconcile the two main versions of realism about structure: the epistemic formulation (according to which all we can know is structure) and the ontic version (according to which structure is all there is). The reconciliation is achieved by introducing suitable levels of abstraction and by articulating a conception of structural objects in information-theoretic terms. In this essay, I argue that the proposed reconciliation works at the expense (...)
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  25. Structural Realism, Scientific Change, and Partial Structures.Otávio Bueno - 2008 - Studia Logica 89 (2):213-235.
    Scientific change has two important dimensions: conceptual change and structural change. In this paper, I argue that the existence of conceptual change brings serious difficulties for scientific realism, and the existence of structural change makes structural realism look quite implausible. I then sketch an alternative account of scientific change, in terms of partial structures, that accommodates both conceptual and structural changes. The proposal, however, is not realist, and supports a structuralist version of van Fraassen’s constructive empiricism (structural empiricism).
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  26. Structural Realism and Quantum Gravity.Tian Yu Cao - 2006 - In Dean Rickles, Steven French & Juha Saatsi (eds.), The Structural Foundations of Quantum Gravity. Oxford University Press.
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  27. Structural Realism and the Interpretation of Quantum Field Theory.Tian Yu Cao - 2003 - Synthese 136 (1):3 - 24.
  28. Symmetries and Paraparticles as a Motivation for Structuralism.Adam Caulton & Jeremy Butterfield - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (2):233-285.
    This article develops an analogy proposed by Stachel between general relativity (GR) and quantum mechanics (QM) as regards permutation invariance. Our main idea is to overcome Pooley's criticism of the analogy by appeal to paraparticles. In GR, the equations are (the solution space is) invariant under diffeomorphisms permuting spacetime points. Similarly, in QM the equations are invariant under particle permutations. Stachel argued that this feature—a theory's ‘not caring which point, or particle, is which’—supported a structuralist ontology. Pooley criticizes this analogy: (...)
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  29. Structural Realism as a Form of Humility.Angelo Cei - 2010 - In M. Dorato M. Suàrez (ed.), Epsa Epistemology and Methodology of Science. Springer. pp. 35--45.
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  30. Structural Distinctions: Entities, Structures, and Changes in Science.Angelo Cei - 2005 - Philosophy of Science 72 (5):1385-1396.
    Abstract. I argue that pessimistic meta-induction (PMI) seems to point an ontological priority of the relations over the objects of the scientific theories of the kind suggested by French and Ladyman (French and Ladyman 2003). My strategy will involve a critical examination of epistemic structural realism (ESR) and historical case-study: the prediction of Zeeman’s effect in Lorentz’s theory of electron.
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  31. Ontological Priority: The Conceptual Basis of Non-Eliminative, Ontic Structural Realism.Anjan Chakravartty - unknown
    The number of positions identified with structural realism in philosophical debates about scientific knowledge has grown significantly in the past decade, particularly with respect to the metaphysical or ‘ontic’ approach (OSR). In recent years, several advocates of OSR have proposed a novel understanding of it in order to side-step a serious challenge faced by its original formulation, eliminative OSR. I examine the conceptual basis of the new, noneliminative view, and conclude that it too faces a serious challenge, resulting in a (...)
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  32. Particles, Causation, and the Metaphysics of Structure.Anjan Chakravartty - forthcoming - Synthese:1-17.
    I consider the idea of a structure of fundamental physical particles being causal. Causation is traditionally thought of as involving relations between entities—objects or events—that cause and are affected. On structuralist interpretations, however, it is unclear whether or how precisely fundamental particles can be causally efficacious. On some interpretations, only relations exist; on others, particles are ontologically dependent on their relations in ways that problematize the traditional picture. I argue that thinking about causal efficacy in this context generates an inevitable (...)
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  33. Structuralism as a Form of Scientific Realism.Anjan Chakravartty - 2004 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 18 (2 & 3):151 – 171.
    Structural realism has recently re-entered mainstream discussions in the philosophy of science. The central notion of structure, however, is contested by both advocates and critics. This paper briefly reviews currently prominent structuralist accounts en route to proposing a metaphysics of structure that is capable of supporting the epistemic aspirations of realists, and that is immune to the charge most commonly levelled against structuralism. This account provides an alternative to the existing epistemic and ontic forms of the position, incorporating elements of (...)
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  34. The Structuralist Conception of Objects.Anjan Chakravartty - 2003 - Philosophy of Science 70 (5):867-878.
    This paper explores the consequences of the two most prominent forms of contemporary structural realism for the notion of objecthood. Epistemic structuralists hold that we can know structural aspects of reality, but nothing about the natures of unobservable relata whose relations define structures. Ontic structuralists hold that we can know structural aspects of reality, and that there is nothing else to know—objects are useful heuristic posits, but are ultimately ontologically dispensable. I argue that structuralism does not succeed in ridding a (...)
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  35. Semirealism.Anjan Chakravartty - 1998 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 29 (3):391-408.
    The intuition of the naı¨ve realist, miracle arguments notwithstanding, is countered forcefully by a host of considerations, including the possibility of underdetermination, and criticisms of abductive inferences to explanatory hypotheses. Some have suggested that an induction may be performed, from the perspective of present theories, on their predecessors. Past theories are thought to be false, strictly speaking; it is thus likely that present-day theories are also false, and will be taken as such at an appropriate future time.
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  36. A Structure of the Consumption Function.Hsiang‐Ke Chao - 2007 - Journal of Economic Methodology 14 (2):227-248.
    It is claimed in the structural realism in philosophy of science that scientists aim to preserve the true structure, represented by the equations in their models. We reinterpret structural realism as a doctrine involving representation. Proving the existence of a representation theorem secures the problem of lacking independent criteria for identification between structure and non?structure. This paper argues that a similar realist view of structure can be found in the theory of consumption in which the Fisherian framework of intertemporal choices (...)
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  37. Ramsey Sentences, Structural Realism and Trivial Realization.Pierre Cruse - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 36 (3):557-576.
    Several recent authors identify structural realism about scientific theories with the claim that the content of a scientific theory is expressible using its Ramsey sentence. Many of these authors have also argued that so understood, the view collapses into empiricist anti-realism, since an argument originally proposed by Max Newman in a review of Bertrand Russell’s The analysis of matter demonstrates that Ramsey sentences are trivially satisfied, and cannot make any significant claims about unobservables. In this paper I argue against both (...)
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  38. Retention Myths Vs. Well-Managed Resources: Promises and Failings of Structural Realism (2014).Jean-Michel Delhotel - manuscript
    Turning away from entities and focusing instead exclusively on ‘structural’ aspects of scientific theories has been advocated as a cogent response to objections levelled at realist conceptions of the aim and success of science. Physical theories whose (predictive) past successes are genuine would, in particular, share with their successors structural traits that would ultimately latch on to ‘structural’ features of the natural world. Motives for subscribing to Structural Realism are reviewed and discussed. It is argued that structural retention claims lose (...)
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  39. Retaining Structure: A Relativistic Perspective.Jean-Michel Delhôtel - forthcoming - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie:1-18.
    Retention of structure across theory change has been invoked in support of a ‘structural’ alternative to more traditional entity-based scientific realism. In that context the transition from Newtonian mechanics to the Special Theory of Relativity is often regarded as a very significant instance of structural preservation, or retention, associated with correspondence-based recovery. The joint derivation, from a small set of elementary and ontologically neutral assumptions, of both the Galilei and the Lorentz transformation exemplifies the virtues of structural approaches to the (...)
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  40. Can Structure Save Scientific Realism?Jean-Michel Delhotel - unknown
    Physics appears to be in a unique position to withstand antirealist attacks, especially ‘pessimistic induction’ arguments. Such resilience provides an incentive for embracing a ‘structural’ variant of scientific realism. Nevertheless, an examination of the physics-mathematics relationship suggests that whatever determines the success of modelling endeavours lends scant support to structural realism. A closer look at conceptual prerequisites of joint ab initio derivations of (i) Galilean and ‘special’ relativity theories and (ii) classical and ‘quantal’ probabilistic frameworks also fosters scepticism about a (...)
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  41. Does Structural Realism Provide the Best Explanation of the Predictive Success of Science?Gerald Doppelt - unknown
    I examine Carrier’s and Ladyman’s structural realist explanation of the predictive success of phlogiston chemistry. On their account, it succeeds because phlogiston chemists grasped that there is some common unobservable structure of relations underlying combustion, calcification, and respiration. I argue that this SR account depends on assuming the truth of current chemical theory of oxidation and reduction, which provides a better explanation of the success of phlogiston theory than SR provides. I defend an alternative version of inference-to-the-best-explanation scientific realism which (...)
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  42. Holism and Structuralism in Classical and Quantum General Relativity.Mauro Dorato & Massimo Pauri - unknown
    The main aim of our paper is to show that interpretative issues belonging to classical General Relativity (GR) might be preliminary to a deeper understanding of conceptual problems stemming from on-going attempts at constructing a quantum theory of gravity. Among such interpretative issues, we focus on the meaning of general covariance and the related question of the identity of points, by basing our investigation on the Hamiltonian formulation of GR. In particular, we argue that the adoption of a peculiar gauge-fixing (...)
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  43. Review of James Ladyman and Don Ross, Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized[REVIEW]Cian Dorr - 2010 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2010 (6).
    Ladyman, Ross and their collaborators (Spurrett is a co-author of two chapters, Collier of one) begin their book with a ferocious attack on "analytic metaphysics", as it is currently practiced. Their opening blast claims that contemporary analytic metaphysics 'contributes nothing to human knowledge': its practitioners are 'wasting their talents', and the whole enterprise, although 'engaged in by some extremely intelligent and morally serious people, fails to qualify as part of the enlightened pursuit of objective truth, and should be discontinued' (vii). (...)
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  44. Process Structural Realism, Instance Ontology, and Societal Order.Joseph Earley - unknown
    Whitehead’s cosmology centers on the self-creation of actual occasions that perish as they come to be, but somehow do combine to constitute societies that are persistent agents and/or patients. “Instance Ontology” developed by D.W. Mertz concerns unification of relata into facts of relatedness by specific intensions. These two conceptual systems are similar in that they both avoid the substance-property distinction: they differ in their understanding of how basic units combine to constitute complex unities. “Process Structural Realism” (PSR) draws from both (...)
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  45. Ontologically Significant Aggregation: Process Structural Realism (PSR).Joseph E. Earley - 2008 - In Weber (ed.), Handbook of Whiteheadian Process Thought. De Gruyter. pp. 2--179.
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  46. Messung und Invarianz – ein Beitrag zum Metrologischen Strukturenrealismus.Alexander Ehmann - 2013 - Philosophia Naturalis 50 (2):215-251.
    [ENGLISH] The present article is a contribution to the development of metrological structural realism. This position of philosophy of science goes back to Matthias Neuber, who introduces it as a third variation of the main structural realisms: epistemic structural realism and ontic structural realism. Here, Neuber attempts to tackle the problems of OSR and ESR while preserving their respective strengths. Of central importance to his approach, are the concepts of invariance, structure and, especially, measurement. Starting from Eino Kaila’s „non-linguistic, realist (...)
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  47. Part 3 Beyond Structural Wholes?Collectives Encompassment - 2010 - In Ton Otto & Nils Bubandt (eds.), Experiments in Holism: Theory and Practice in Contemporary Anthropology. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 175.
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  48. Holism and Structural Realism.Michael Esfeld - unknown
    We first introduce structural realism as a position in the metaphysics of science, pointing out the way in which this position replaces intrinsic properties with relations so that it amounts to a holistic in contrast to an atomistic metaphysics. We argue in favour of a moderate version of structural realism that puts objects and relations on the same ontological footing and assess the general philosophical arguments for this position. The second section shows how structural realism gains support from quantum physics. (...)
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  49. Ontic Structural Realism and the Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.Michael Esfeld - 2013 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 3 (1):19-32.
    This paper argues that ontic structural realism (OSR) faces a dilemma: either it remains on the general level of realism with respect to the structure of a given theory, but then it is, like epistemic structural realism, only a partial realism; or it is a complete realism, but then it has to answer the question how the structure of a given theory is implemented, instantiated or realized and thus has to argue for a particular interpretation of the theory in question. (...)
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  50. The Modal Nature of Structures in Ontic Structural Realism.Michael Esfeld - 2009 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 23 (2):179 – 194.
    Ontic structural realism is the view that structures are what is real in the first place in the domain of fundamental physics. The structures are usually conceived as including a primitive modality. However, it has not been spelled out as yet what exactly that modality amounts to. This paper proposes to fill this lacuna by arguing that the fundamental physical structures possess a causal essence, being powers. Applying the debate about causal vs categorical properties in analytic metaphysics to ontic structural (...)
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