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  1. A Theory of Scientific Study.Robert Luk - 2017 - Foundations of Science 22 (1):11-38.
    This paper presents a theory of scientific study which is regarded as a social learning process of scientific knowledge creation, revision, application, monitoring and dissemination with the aim of securing good quality, general, objective, testable and complete scientific knowledge of the domain. The theory stipulates the aim of scientific study that forms the basis of its principles. It also makes seven assumptions about scientific study and defines the major participating entities. It extends a recent process model of scientific study into (...)
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  • On the Relationship Between Science and Ethics.Massimo Pigliucci - 2003 - Zygon 38 (4):871-894.
    The relationship between ethics and science has been discussed within the framework of continuity versus discontinuity theories, each of which can take several forms. Continuity theorists claim that ethics is a science or at least that it has deep similarities with the modus operandi of science. Discontinuity theorists reject such equivalency, while at the same time many of them claim that ethics does deal with objective truths and universalizable statements, just not in the same sense as science does. I propose (...)
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  • Types of Experiments and Causal Process Tracing: What Happened on the Kaibab Plateau in the 1920s.Roberta L. Millstein - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 78:98-104.
    In a well-cited book chapter, ecologist Jared Diamond characterizes three main types of experiment performed in community ecology: laboratory experiment, field experiment, and natural experiment. Diamond argues that each form of experiment has strengths and weaknesses, with respect to, for example, realism or the ability to follow a causal trajectory. But does Diamond’s typology exhaust the available kinds of cause-finding practices? Some social scientists have characterized something they call “causal process tracing.” Is this a fourth type of experiment or something (...)
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  • Understanding Scientific Study Via Process Modeling.Robert W. P. Luk - 2010 - Foundations of Science 15 (1):49-78.
    This paper argues that scientific studies distinguish themselves from other studies by a combination of their processes, their (knowledge) elements and the roles of these elements. This is supported by constructing a process model. An illustrative example based on Newtonian mechanics shows how scientific knowledge is structured according to the process model. To distinguish scientific studies from research and scientific research, two additional process models are built for such processes. We apply these process models: (1) to argue that scientific progress (...)
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  • Why Experiments Matter.Adrian Currie & Arnon Levy - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy (9-10):1-25.
    Traditionally, experimentation is considered a privileged means of confirmation. However, how experiments are a better confirmatory source than other strategies is unclear, and recent discussions have identified experiments with various modeling strategies on the one hand, and with ‘natural’ experiments on the other hand. We argue that experiments aiming to test theories are best understood as controlled investigations of specimens. ‘Control’ involves repeated, fine-grained causal manipulation of focal properties. This capacity generates rich knowledge of the object investigated. ‘Specimenhood’ involves possessing (...)
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  • Historical Reconstruction: Gaining Epistemic Access to the Deep Past.Patrick Forber - 2011 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 3 (20130604).
    We discuss the scientific task of historical reconstruction and the problem of epistemic access. We argue that strong epistemic support for historical claims consists in the consilience of multiple independent lines of evidence, and analyze the impact hypothesis for the End-Cretaceous mass extinction to illustrate the accrual of epistemic support. Although there are elements of the impact hypothesis that enjoy strong epistemic support, the general conditions for this are strict, and help to clarify the difficulties associated with reconstructing the deep (...)
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  • Historical Science, Over- and Underdetermined: A Study of Darwin's Inference of Origins.A. Tucker - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (4):805-829.
    The epistemology of the historical sciences has been debated recently. Cleland argued that the effects of the past overdetermine it. Turner argued that the past is underdetermined by its effects because of the decay of information from the past. I argue that the extent of over- and underdetermination cannot be approximated by philosophical inquiry. It is an empirical question that each historical science attempts to answer. Philosophers should examine how paradigmatic cases of historical science handled underdetermination or utilized overdetermination. I (...)
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  • Prediction and Explanation in Historical Natural Science.C. E. Cleland - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (3):551-582.
    In earlier work ( Cleland [2001] , [2002]), I sketched an account of the structure and justification of ‘prototypical’ historical natural science that distinguishes it from ‘classical’ experimental science. This article expands upon this work, focusing upon the close connection between explanation and justification in the historical natural sciences. I argue that confirmation and disconfirmation in these fields depends primarily upon the explanatory (versus predictive or retrodictive) success or failure of hypotheses vis-à-vis empirical evidence. The account of historical explanation that (...)
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  • Introduction: Scientific Knowledge of the Deep Past.Adrian Currie & Derek Turner - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 55:43-46.
  • Should Intelligent Design Be Taught in Public School Science Classrooms?Anya Plutynski - 2010 - Science & Education 19 (6-8):779-795.
    A variety of different arguments have been offered for teaching ‘‘both sides’’ of the evolution/ID debate in public schools. This article reviews five of the most common types of arguments advanced by proponents of Intelligent Design and demonstrates how and why they are founded on confusion and misunderstanding. It argues on behalf of teaching evolution, and relegating discussion of ID to philosophy or history courses.
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  • Aggregating Evidence in Climate Science: Consilience, Robustness and the Wisdom of Multiple Models.A. Vezér Martin - unknown
    The goal of this dissertation is to contribute to the epistemology of science by addressing a set of related questions arising from current discussions in the philosophy and science of climate change: Given the imperfection of computer models, how do they provide information about large and complex target systems? What is the relationship between consilient reasoning and robust evidential support in the production of scientific knowledge? Does taking the mean of a set of model outputs provide epistemic advantages over using (...)
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  • Why Experiments Matter.Arnon Levy & Adrian Currie - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (9-10):1066-1090.
    ABSTRACTExperimentation is traditionally considered a privileged means of confirmation. However, why and how experiments form a better confirmatory source relative to other strategies is unclear, and recent discussions have identified experiments with various modeling strategies on the one hand, and with ‘natural’ experiments on the other hand. We argue that experiments aiming to test theories are best understood as controlled investigations of specimens. ‘Control’ involves repeated, fine-grained causal manipulation of focal properties. This capacity generates rich knowledge of the object investigated. (...)
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  • Guessing the Future of the Past: Derek Turner, Making Prehistory: Historical Science and the Realism Debate. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 2007.Ben Jeffares - 2010 - Biology and Philosophy 25 (1):125-142.
    I review the book “Making Prehistory: Historical Science and the Scientific Realism Debate” by Derek Turner. Turner suggests that philosophers should take seriously the historical sciences such as geology when considering philosophy of science issues. To that end, he explores the scientific realism debate with the historical sciences in mind. His conclusion is a view allied to that of Arthur Fine: a view Turner calls the natural historical attitude. While I find Turner’s motivations good, I find his characterisation of the (...)
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  • The Other Eukaryotes in Light of Evolutionary Protistology.Maureen A. O’Malley, Alastair G. B. Simpson & Andrew J. Roger - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (2):299-330.
    In order to introduce protists to philosophers, we outline the diversity, classification, and evolutionary importance of these eukaryotic microorganisms. We argue that an evolutionary understanding of protists is crucial for understanding eukaryotes in general. More specifically, evolutionary protistology shows how the emphasis on understanding evolutionary phenomena through a phylogeny-based comparative approach constrains and underpins any more abstract account of why certain organismal features evolved in the early history of eukaryotes. We focus on three crucial episodes of this history: the origins (...)
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  • Explaining the Past in the Geosciences.Robert John Inkpen - 2008 - Philosophia 36 (4):495-507.
    Abductive reasoning is central to reconstructing the past in the geosciences. This paper outlines the nature of the abductive method and restates it in Bayesian terms. Evidence plays a key role in this working method and, in particular, traces of the past are important in this explanatory framework. Traces, whether singularly or as groups, are interpreted within the context of the event for which they have evidential claims. Traces are not considered as independent entities but rather as inter-related pieces of (...)
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  • Philosophical Issues in Recent Paleontology.Derek D. Turner - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (7):494-505.
    The distinction between idiographic science, which aims to reconstruct sequences of particular events, and nomothetic science, which aims to discover laws and regularities, is crucial for understanding the paleobiological revolution of the 1970s and 1980s. Stephen Jay Gould at times seemed conflicted about whether to say (a) that idiographic science is fine as it is or (b) that paleontology would have more credibility if it were more nomothetic. Ironically, one of the lasting results of the paleobiological revolution was a new (...)
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  • Testing Times: Regularities in the Historical Sciences.Ben Jeffares - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 39 (4):469-475.
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  • Histories of Molecules: Reconciling the Past.Maureen A. O'Malley - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 55:69-83.
  • Testing Times: Regularities in the Historical Sciences.Ben Jeffares - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 39 (4):469-475.
    The historical sciences, such as geology, evolutionary biology, and archaeology, appear to have no means to test hypotheses. However, on closer examination, reasoning in the historical sciences relies upon regularities, regularities that can be tested. I outline the role of regularities in the historical sciences, and in the process, blur the distinction between the historical sciences and the experimental sciences: all sciences deploy theories about the world in their investigations.
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