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  1. Is There a Place for Epistemic Virtues in Theory Choice?Milena Ivanova - 2014 - In Abrol Fairweather (ed.), Virtue Epistemology Naturalized. Springer, Cham. pp. 207-226.
    This paper challenges the appeal to theory virtues in theory choice as well as the appeal to the intellectual and moral virtues of an agent as determining unique choices between empirically equivalent theories. After arguing that theoretical virtues do not determine the choice of one theory at the expense of another theory, I argue that nor does the appeal to intellectual and moral virtues single out one agent, who defends a particular theory, and exclude another agent defending an alternative theory. (...)
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  2. Has Science Established That the Universe is Physically Comprehensible?Nicholas Maxwell - 2013 - In A. Travena & B. Soen (eds.), Recent Advances in Cosmology. New York, USA: Nova Science. pp. 1-56.
    Most scientists would hold that science has not established that the cosmos is physically comprehensible – i.e. such that there is some as-yet undiscovered true physical theory of everything that is unified. This is an empirically untestable, or metaphysical thesis. It thus lies beyond the scope of science. Only when physics has formulated a testable unified theory of everything which has been amply corroborated empirically will science be in a position to declare that it has established that the cosmos is (...)
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  3. Mr. Fit, Mr. Simplicity and Mr. Scope: From Social Choice to Theory Choice.Michael Morreau - 2013 - Erkenntnis 79 (Suppl 6):1253-1268.
    An analogue of Arrow’s theorem has been thought to limit the possibilities for multi-criterial theory choice. Here, an example drawn from Toy Science, a model of theories and choice criteria, suggests that it does not. Arrow’s assumption that domains are unrestricted is inappropriate in connection with theory choice in Toy Science. There are, however, variants of Arrow’s theorem that do not require an unrestricted domain. They require instead that domains are, in a technical sense, ‘rich’. Since there are rich domains (...)
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  4. Deviance and Vice: Strength as a Theoretical Virtue in the Epistemology of Logic.Gillian Russell - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (3):548-563.
    This paper is about the putative theoretical virtue of strength, as it might be used in abductive arguments to the correct logic in the epistemology of logic. It argues for three theses. The first is that the well-defined property of logical strength is neither a virtue nor a vice, so that logically weaker theories are not—all other things being equal—worse or better theories than logically stronger ones. The second thesis is that logical strength does not entail the looser characteristic of (...)
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  5. Simplicity: Ideals of Practice in Mathematics and the Arts.Roman Kossak & Philip Ording (eds.) - 2017 - Springer.
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  6. What is Scientific Understanding and How Can It Be Achieved?Henk de Regt & Christoph Baumberger - 2019 - In Kevin McKain & Kostas Kampourakis (eds.), What Is Scientific Knowledge? An Introduction to Contemporary Epistemology of Science. New York, NY, USA: pp. 66-81.
    Science has not only produced a vast amount of knowledge about a wide range of phenomena, it has also enhanced our understanding of these phenomena. Indeed, understanding can be regarded as one of the central aims of science. But what exactly is it to understand phenomena scientifically, and how can scientific understanding be achieved? What is the difference between scientific knowledge and scientific understanding? These questions are hotly debated in contemporary epistemology and philosophy of science. While philosophers have long regarded (...)
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  7. Methods in Science and Metaphysics.Matt Farr & Milena Ivanova - 2019 - In Ricki Bliss & James Miller (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Metametaphysics. Routledge.
    While science is taken to differ from non-scientific activities in virtue of its methodology, metaphysics is usually defined in terms of its subject matter. However, many traditional questions of metaphysics are addressed in a variety of ways by science, making it difficult to demarcate metaphysics from science solely in terms of their subject matter. Are the methodologies of science and metaphysics sufficiently distinct to act as criteria of demarcation between the two? In this chapter we focus on several important overlaps (...)
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  8. The Objectivity of Subjective Bayesianism.Jan Sprenger - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 8 (3):539-558.
    Subjective Bayesianism is a major school of uncertain reasoning and statistical inference. It is often criticized for a lack of objectivity: it opens the door to the influence of values and biases, evidence judgments can vary substantially between scientists, it is not suited for informing policy decisions. My paper rebuts these concerns by connecting the debates on scientific objectivity and statistical method. First, I show that the above concerns arise equally for standard frequentist inference with null hypothesis significance tests. Second, (...)
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  9. The Flight Against Doubt.Inmaculada de Melo-Martin & Kristen Intemann - 2018 - New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press.
    The lack of public support for climate change policies and refusals to vaccinate children are just two alarming illustrations of the impacts of dissent about scientific claims. Dissent can lead to confusion, false beliefs, and widespread public doubt about highly justified scientific evidence. Even more dangerously, it has begun to corrode the very authority of scientific consensus and knowledge. Deployed aggressively and to political ends, some dissent can intimidate scientists, stymie research, and lead both the public and policymakers to oppose (...)
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  10. Explanatory Virtues Are Indicative of Truth.Kevin McCain - 2018 - Logos and Episteme 9 (1):63-73.
    In a recent issue of this journal, Miloud Belkoniene challenges explanationist accounts of evidential support in two ways. First, he alleges that there are cases that show explanatory virtues are not linked to the truth of hypotheses. Second, he maintains that attempts to show that explanatoriness is relevant to evidential support because it adds to the resiliency of probability functions fail. I contest both of Belkoniene’s claims.
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  11. Robustness Analysis and Tractability in Modeling.Chiara Lisciandra - 2017 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 7 (1):79-95.
    In the philosophy of science and epistemology literature, robustness analysis has become an umbrella term that refers to a variety of strategies. One of the main purposes of this paper is to argue that different strategies rely on different criteria for justifications. More specifically, I will claim that: i) robustness analysis differs from de-idealization even though the two concepts have often been conflated in the literature; ii) the comparison of different model frameworks requires different justifications than the comparison of models (...)
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  12. Economical Unification as a Method of Philosophical Analysis.Styrman Avril - 2016 - Dissertation, University of Helsinki, Faculty of Arts
    This doctoral dissertation introduces economical unification as a method of analysis and shows how it is applied in dealing with some topics that are central in contemporary philosophy. The method resembles a production line that consists of three successive elements which are interconnected in two stages: -/- Economy > Ontology > Applications -/- In the first stage, an economically unified ontology is explicated by applying the principle of economy, which is an evaluation criterion of alternative ontologies. An economically unified ontology (...)
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  13. Parsimony for Empty Space.Roy Sorensen - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (2):215-230.
    Ockham's razor is popularly phrased as a prohibition against multiplying entities beyond necessity. This prohibition should extend to the receptacle for these entities. To state my thesis more positively and precisely, both qualitative and quantitative parsimony apply to space, time, and possibility. All other things equal, we ought to prefer a hypothesis that postulates less space. Smaller is better. Admittedly, scientists are ambivalent about economizing on the void. They praise simplicity. Yet astronomers have a history of helping themselves to as (...)
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  14. Beauty and Revolution in Science. [REVIEW]Katherine Hawley - 1997 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 48 (2):297-299.
    Review of Beauty and Revolution in Science, by JW McAllister.
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  15. Harmony and Simplicity: Aesthetic Virtues and the Rise of Testability.Rhonda Martens - 2009 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 40 (3):258-266.
    Copernicus claimed that his system was preferable in part on the grounds of its superior harmony and simplicity, but left very few hints as to what was meant by these terms. Copernicus’s pupil, Rheticus, was more forthcoming. Kepler, influenced by Rheticus, articulated further the nature of the virtues of harmony and simplicity. I argue that these terms are metaphors for the structural features of the Copernican system that make it more able to effectively exploit the available data. So it is (...)
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  16. The Role of Observation and Simplicity in Einstein's Epistemology.Jim Shelton - 1987 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 19 (1):103.
  17. Unity Without Simplicity: Leibnitz on Organisms.Hidé Ishiguro - 1998 - The Monist 81 (4):534-552.
    Any interesting philosopher’s thoughts contain many prima facie mutually contradicting ideas. Especially if a thinker philosophizes intensely on an extremely wide area of enquiry over a long period, as is the case with Leibniz, advancing many views on each problem, often shifting his position, especially in the context of exchanges of opinions in letters, developing his views without necessarily tying up loose ends, and if in addition the thinker only publishes a minute portion of what he has written, it would (...)
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  18. Robustness and Evidence of Mechanisms in Early Experimental Atherosclerosis Research.Veli-Pekka Parkkinen - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 60:44-55.
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  19. Simplicity.David Hills - 1977 - Philosophical Review 86 (4):595.
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  20. The Varieties of Parsimony in Psychology.Mike Dacey - 2016 - Mind and Language 31 (4):414-437.
    Philosophers and psychologists make many different, seemingly incompatible parsimony claims in support of competing models of cognition in nonhuman animals. This variety of parsimony claims is problematic. Firstly, it is difficult to justify each specific variety. This problem is especially salient for Morgan's Canon, perhaps the most important variety of parsimony claimed. Secondly, there is no systematic way of adjudicating between particular claims when they conflict. I argue for a view of parsimony in comparative psychology that solves these problems, based (...)
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  21. Allocating Confirmation with Derivational Robustness.Aki Lehtinen - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (9):2487-2509.
    Robustness may increase the degree to which the robust result is indirectly confirmed if it is shown to depend on confirmed rather than disconfirmed assumptions. Although increasing the weight with which existing evidence indirectly confirms it in such a case, robustness may also be irrelevant for confirmation, or may even disconfirm. Whether or not it confirms depends on the available data and on what other results have already been established.
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  22. Simplicity, Inference and Modelling: Keeping It Sophisticatedly Simple.Arnold Zellner, Hugo A. Keuzenkamp & Michael McAleer (eds.) - 2001 - Cambridge University Press.
    The idea that simplicity matters in science is as old as science itself, with the much cited example of Ockham's Razor, 'entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem': entities are not to be multiplied beyond necessity. A problem with Ockham's razor is that nearly everybody seems to accept it, but few are able to define its exact meaning and to make it operational in a non-arbitrary way. Using a multidisciplinary perspective including philosophers, mathematicians, econometricians and economists, this 2002 monograph examines simplicity (...)
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  23. Simple is Not Easy.Edison Barrios - 2016 - Synthese 193 (7):2261-2305.
    I review and challenge the views on simplicity and its role in linguistics put forward by Ludlow. In particular, I criticize the claim that simplicity—in the sense pertinent to science—is nothing more than ease of use or “user-friendliness”, motivated by economy of labor. I argue that Ludlow’s discussion fails to do justice to the diversity of factors that are relevant to simplicity considerations. This, in turn, leads to the neglect of crucial cases in which the rationale for simplification is unmistakably (...)
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  24. Is Simplicity Evidence of Truth?Adolf GrüNbaum - 2007 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 61:261-275.
    In a short 1997 book entitled Simplicity as Evidence of Truth, the Oxford philosopher Richard Swinburne has put forward the following thesis summarily: ‘… for theories rendering equally probable our observational data, fitting equally well with background knowledge, the simplest is most probably true’.
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  25. Simplicity and Model Selection.Guillaume Rochefort-Maranda - 2016 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 6 (2):261-279.
    In this paper I compare parametric and nonparametric regression models with the help of a simulated data set. Doing so, I have two main objectives. The first one is to differentiate five concepts of simplicity and assess their respective importance. The second one is to show that the scope of the existing philosophical literature on simplicity and model selection is too narrow because it does not take the nonparametric approach into account, S112–S123, 2002; Forster and Sober in The British Journal (...)
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  26. 14. Simplicity.Daniel Goldstick - 2009 - In Reason, Truth and Reality. University of Toronto Press. pp. 138-150.
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  27. Introduction: Cognitive Attitudes and Values in Science.Daniel J. McKaughan & Kevin C. Elliott - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 53:57-61.
  28. Why Favour Simplicity?R. White - 2005 - Analysis 65 (3):205-210.
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  29. Instrumentalism, Parsimony, and the Akaike Framework.Elliott Sober - 2002 - Philosophy of Science 69 (S3):S112-S123.
    Akaike’s framework for thinking about model selection in terms of the goal of predictive accuracy and his criterion for model selection have important philosophical implications. Scientists often test models whose truth values they already know, and they often decline to reject models that they know full well are false. Instrumentalism helps explain this pervasive feature of scientific practice, and Akaike’s framework helps provide instrumentalism with the epistemology it needs. Akaike’s criterion for model selection also throws light on the role of (...)
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  30. Model Structure Adequacy Analysis: Selecting Models on the Basis of Their Ability to Answer Scientific Questions.Mark L. Taper, David F. Staples & Bradley B. Shepard - 2008 - Synthese 163 (3):357-370.
    Models carry the meaning of science. This puts a tremendous burden on the process of model selection. In general practice, models are selected on the basis of their relative goodness of fit to data penalized by model complexity. However, this may not be the most effective approach for selecting models to answer a specific scientific question because model fit is sensitive to all aspects of a model, not just those relevant to the question. Model Structural Adequacy analysis is proposed as (...)
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  31. Incredible Worlds, Credible Results.Jaakko Kuorikoski & Aki Lehtinen - 2009 - Erkenntnis 70 (1):119-131.
    Robert Sugden argues that robustness analysis cannot play an epistemic role in grounding model-world relationships because the procedure is only a matter of comparing models with each other. We posit that this argument is based on a view of models as being surrogate systems in too literal a sense. In contrast, the epistemic importance of robustness analysis is easy to explicate if modelling is viewed as extended cognition, as inference from assumptions to conclusions. Robustness analysis is about assessing the reliability (...)
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  32. Derivational Robustness, Credible Substitute Systems and Mathematical Economic Models: The Case of Stability Analysis in Walrasian General Equilibrium Theory.D. Hands - 2016 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 6 (1):31-53.
    This paper supports the literature which argues that derivational robustness can have epistemic import in highly idealized economic models. The defense is based on a particular example from mathematical economic theory, the dynamic Walrasian general equilibrium model. It is argued that derivational robustness first increased and later decreased the credibility of the Walrasian model. The example demonstrates that derivational robustness correctly describes the practices of a particular group of influential economic theorists and provides support for the arguments of philosophers who (...)
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  33. Seeing and Believing: Galileo, Aristotelians, and the Mountains on the Moon.David Marshall Miller - 2013 - In Daniel De Simone & John Hessler (eds.), The Starry Messenger. Levenger Press. pp. 131-145.
    Galileo’s telescopic lunar observations, announced in Siderius Nuncius (1610), were a triumph of observational skill and ingenuity. Yet, unlike the Medicean stars, Galileo’s lunar “discoveries” were not especially novel. Indeed, Plutarch had noted the moon’s uneven surface in classical times, and many other renaissance observers had also turned their gaze moonward, even (in Harriot’s case) aided by telescopes of their own. Moreover, what Galileo and his contemporaries saw was colored by the assumptions they already had. Copernicans assumed the moon was (...)
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  34. Falsifiability.Darrell Patrick Rowbottom - unknown
    This entry gives an account of falsifiability both as championed in particular by Karl Popper and also more generally and examines its wider implications for scientific methodology.
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  35. Robustness as an Image of Sustainability: Applied Conceptualisations and Their Contribution to Sustainable Development.D. M. Goede, B. Gremmen & M. Blom - unknown
    Sustainability is a catch-all term in need of more tangible, yet qualitatively measureable operationalisations. This paper discusses the relevance of robustness as an image of sustainability. We argue that robustness has conceptual advantages against sustainability because it is embedded in system thinking and gives direction to operationalisations of sustainable development more than sustainability ever can. We consider conceptualisations of robustness in three TransForum projects which were set up to develop the concept of robustness in agricultural innovation. In these projects, robustness (...)
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  36. Robust Agriculture: Balancing Between Vulnerability and Stability.D. M. Goede, B. Gremmen & M. Blom - unknown
    The impression that agricultural systems are increasingly vulnerable to unwanted environmental fluctuations has created an urge for robustness in agriculture. However, the meaning of robustness and its relation to sustainable agriculture remain unclear. Considering two related concepts, i.e., vulnerability and stability, this article analyses different conceptualizations of robustness and their applications in agricultural production systems. It is argued that robustness should not be seen as a clear-cut system feature, and that it only exists in the absence of stability and by (...)
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  37. Simplicity and Falsifiability a Critical Examination of Karl Popper's Stipulative Definition of Simplicity.Brian Paul MacPherson - unknown
    Source: Masterss International, Volume: 40-07, page:. Thesis --University of Windsor, 1982.
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  38. Extending the Argument From Unconceived Alternatives: Observations, Models, Predictions, Explanations, Methods, Instruments, Experiments, and Values.Darrell Rowbottom - 2016 - Synthese (10).
    Stanford’s argument against scientific realism focuses on theories, just as many earlier arguments from inconceivability have. However, there are possible arguments against scientific realism involving unconceived (or inconceivable) entities of different types: observations, models, predictions, explanations, methods, instruments, experiments, and values. This paper charts such arguments. In combination, they present the strongest challenge yet to scientific realism.
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  39. Nonuniformly Hyperbolic Cocycles: Admissibility and Robustness.Luis Barreira & Claudia Valls - 2012 - Annali della Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa 11 (3):545-564.
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  40. Theoretical Virtues and Theory Adjudication in the Origin of Life Debate.Jeff Wisdom - 2002 - Auslegung 26 (1):41-58.
  41. Simplicity in Scientific Theory: A Case History Approach.Arthur Anthony Dobos - 1972 - Dissertation, Saint Louis University
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  42. The Simplicity of Scientific Theories Measured.John Henry Cassidy - 1975 - Dissertation, The University of Rochester
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  43. Non-Falsifiability: An Inductivist Perspective.D. J. Balestra - 1979 - International Logic Review 19:118.
  44. Principles and the Development of Physical Theory: Case Studies.Robert Corby Hovis - 1994 - Dissertation, Cornell University
    Three separate articles make up the chapters of this dissertation. They were written with different aims and audiences in mind, but each deals in some way with one or more "principles" that have been invoked in argumentation and explanation in the physical sciences. The principles of concern are propositions which have an "aesthetic" or "foundational" or "philosophical" character and which are generally believed to be widely applicable or particularly powerful--for example, the Principle of Plenitude, the Principle of Mathematical Beauty, Occam's (...)
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  45. The Simplicity of the West.Peter Milward - 1998 - Renaissance Institute.
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  46. The Pursuit of Simplicity.Edward Teller - 1981
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  47. The Myth of Simplicity: Problems of Scientific Philosophy.G. Schlesinger - 1963 - Philosophical Review 74 (3):402-404.
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  48. Quantitative Parsimony, Explanatory Power and Dark Matter.William L. Vanderburgh - 2014 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (2):317-327.
    Baker argues that quantitative parsimony—the principle that hypotheses requiring fewer entities are to be preferred over their empirically equivalent rivals—is a rational methodological criterion because it maximizes explanatory power. Baker lends plausibility to his account by confronting it with the example of postulating of the neutrino in order to resolve a discrepancy in Beta decay experiments. Baker’s account is initially attractive, but I argue that its details are problematic and that it yields undesirable consequences when applied to the case of (...)
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  49. Some Simple Problems with Simplicity.Laurie Calhoun - 1995 - Reason Papers 20:109-112.
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  50. The Myth of Simplicity: Problems of Scientific Philosophy. [REVIEW]L. C. G. - 1963 - Review of Metaphysics 17 (1):143-143.
    A "problem" book which reads, throughout too many of its pages, like an almanac of distinctions. Yet Bunge's discussions of partial truth, causality and chance, and especially of metanomological statements restore the balance and lend support to his thesis: science as a body of knowledge must be regarded as a set of systems of propositions and proposals of many kinds with the aim of "the maximization of the degree of truth."--G. L. C.
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