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  1. Unknotting reciprocal causation between organism and environment.Jan Baedke, Alejandro Fábregas-Tejeda & Guido I. Prieto - 2021 - Biology and Philosophy 36 (5):1-29.
    In recent years, biologists and philosophers of science have argued that evolutionary theory should incorporate more seriously the idea of ‘reciprocal causation.’ This notion refers to feedback loops whereby organisms change their experiences of the environment or alter the physical properties of their surroundings. In these loops, in particular niche constructing activities are central, since they may alter selection pressures acting on organisms, and thus affect their evolutionary trajectories. This paper discusses long-standing problems that emerge when studying such reciprocal causal (...)
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  • A Roadmap to Explanatory Pluralism: Introduction to the Topical Collection The Biology of Behaviour.Eric Muszynski & Christophe Malaterre - forthcoming - Synthese.
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  • Integrative and Separationist Perspectives: Understanding the Causal Role of Cultural Transmission in Human Language Evolution.Francesco Suman - 2018 - Biological Theory 13 (4):246-260.
    Biological evolution and cultural evolution are distinct evolutionary processes; they are apparent also in human language, where both processes contributed in shaping its evolution. However, the nature of the interaction between these two processes is still debated today. It is often claimed that the emergence of modern language was preceded by the evolution of a language-ready brain: the latter is usually intended as a product of biological evolution, while the former is believed to be the consequence of cultural processes. I (...)
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  • Delegated Causality of Complex Systems.Raimundas Vidunas - 2019 - Axiomathes 29 (1):81-97.
    A notion of delegated causality is introduced here. This subtle kind of causality is dual to interventional causality. Delegated causality elucidates the causal role of dynamical systems at the “edge of chaos”, explicates evident cases of downward causation, and relates emergent phenomena to Gödel’s incompleteness theorem. Apparently rich implications are noticed in biology and Chinese philosophy. The perspective of delegated causality supports cognitive interpretations of self-organization and evolution.
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  • Causation and Information: Where Is Biological Meaning to Be Found?Mark Pharoah - 2020 - Biosemiotics 13 (3):309-326.
    The term ‘information’ is used extensively in biology, cognitive science and the philosophy of consciousness in relation to the concepts of ‘meaning’ and ‘causation’. While ‘information’ is a term that serves a useful purpose in specific disciplines, there is much to the concept that is problematic. Part 1 is a critique of the stance that information is an independently existing entity. On this view, and in biological contexts, systems transmit, acquire, assimilate, decode and manipulate it, and in so doing, generate (...)
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  • Causal Mapping as a Teaching Tool for Reflecting on Causation in Human Evolution.Susan Hanisch & Dustin Eirdosh - forthcoming - Science & Education.
    Teleological reasoning is viewed as a major hurdle to evolution education, and yet, eliciting, interpreting, and reflecting upon teleological language presents an arguably greater challenge to the evolution educator and researcher. This article argues that making explicit the role of behavior as a causal factor in the evolution of particular traits may prove productive in helping students to link their everyday experience of behavior to evolutionary changes in populations in ways congruent with scientific perspectives. We present a teaching tool, used (...)
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  • Eco-evo-devo and iterated learning: towards an integrated approach in the light of niche construction.José Segovia-Martín & Sergio Balari - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (4):1-23.
    In this paper we argue that ecological evolutionary developmental biology accounts of cognitive modernity are compatible with cultural evolution theories of language built upon iterated learning models. Cultural evolution models show that the emergence of near universal properties of language do not require the preexistence of strong specific constraints. Instead, the development of general abilities, unrelated to informational specificity, like the copying of complex signals and sharing of communicative intentions is required for cultural evolution to yield specific properties, such as (...)
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  • Language Acquisition and EcoDevo Processes: The Case of the Lexicon-Syntax Interface.Sergio Balari, Guillermo Lorenzo & Sonia E. Sultan - 2020 - Biological Theory 15 (3):148-160.
    Ecological developmental biology considers the phenotype as actively produced through an environmentally informed process of individual development, rather than predetermined by the genotype. Accordingly, the genotype is viewed as one among many interactants that contribute formative elements; it is understood to do so no differently from the way other organism-internal and environmental resources do. Although the EcoDevo approach is evidently particularly apt to inform approaches to human development, which mostly takes shape in rich cultural environments, it is remarkable that, at (...)
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  • How Should We Select Conceptual Content for Biology High School Curricula?Ítalo Nascimento de Carvalho, Charbel N. El-Hani & Nei Nunes-Neto - 2020 - Science & Education 29 (3):513-547.
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  • What’s Wrong with Evolutionary Causation? [REVIEW]Jan Baedke - 2021 - Acta Biotheoretica 69 (1):79-89.
    This review essay reflects on recent discussions in evolutionary biology and philosophy of science on the central causes of evolution and the structure of causal explanations in evolutionary theory. In this debate, it has been argued that our view of evolutionary causation should be rethought by including more seriously developmental causes and causes of the individual acting organism. I use Tobias Uller’s and Kevin Laland’s volume Evolutionary Causation as well as recent reviews of it as a starting point to reflect (...)
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  • Hierarchy Theory of Evolution and the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis: Some Epistemic Bridges, Some Conceptual Rifts.Alejandro Fábregas-Tejeda & Francisco Vergara-Silva - 2018 - Evolutionary Biology 45 (2):127-139.
    Contemporary evolutionary biology comprises a plural landscape of multiple co-existent conceptual frameworks and strenuous voices that disagree on the nature and scope of evolutionary theory. Since the mid-eighties, some of these conceptual frameworks have denounced the ontologies of the Modern Synthesis and of the updated Standard Theory of Evolution as unfinished or even flawed. In this paper, we analyze and compare two of those conceptual frameworks, namely Niles Eldredge’s Hierarchy Theory of Evolution (with its extended ontology of evolutionary entities) and (...)
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  • Omnipotence and Spatiotemporally Restricted Entities.Kevin Vandergriff - 2018 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 84 (1):3-29.
    Many people who claim that evolution and theism are in tension assume that God, being omnipotent, could create life in different ways. For instance, Paul Draper has argued that the fact that life evolved on earth supports naturalism over theism. However, for there to be a probabilistic tension between naturalism and theism, because of the fact of evolution, a certain background assumption must be true, namely, that God could have made biological organisms and species through an act of Genesis-style special (...)
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  • Expanding Views of Evolution and Causality: Workshop ‘Cause and Process in Evolution’, Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research , Vienna, May 11th–14th, 2017.Jan Baedke - 2017 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 48 (4):591-594.
  • The Swashbuckling Anthropologist: Henrich on The Secret of Our Success. [REVIEW]Ellen Clarke & Cecilia Heyes - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (2):289-305.
    In The Secret of Our Success, Joseph Henrich claims that human beings are unique—different from all other animals—because we engage in cumulative cultural evolution. It is the technological and social products of cumulative cultural evolution, not the intrinsic rationality or ‘smartness’ of individual humans, that enable us to live in a huge range of different habitats, and to dominate most of the creatures who share those habitats with us. We are sympathetic to this general view, the latest expression of the (...)
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  • Environmental Ethics.Roberta L. Millstein - 2013 - In K. Kampourakis (ed.), The Philosophy of Biology: A Companion for Educators. Springer.
    A number of areas of biology raise questions about what is of value in the natural environment and how we ought to behave towards it: conservation biology, environmental science, and ecology, to name a few. Based on my experience teaching students from these and similar majors, I argue that the field of environmental ethics has much to teach these students. They come to me with pent-up questions and a feeling that more is needed to fully engage in their subjects, and (...)
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  • An Updated Evolutionary Research Programme for the Evolution of Language.Francesco Suman - 2018 - Topoi 37 (2):255-263.
    Language evolution, intended as an open problem in the evolutionary research programme, will be here analyzed from the theoretical perspective advanced by the supporters of the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis. Four factors and two associated concepts will be matched with a selection of critical examples concerning genus Homo evolution, relevant for the evolution of language, such as the evolution of hominin life-history traits, the enlargement of the social group, increased cooperation among individuals, behavioral change and innovations, heterochronic modifications leading to increased (...)
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  • Ultimate and proximate explanations of strong reciprocity.Jack Vromen - 2017 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 39 (3):25.
    Strong reciprocity has recently been subject to heated debate. In this debate, the “West camp” :231–262, 2011), which is critical of the case for SR, and the “Laland camp” :1512–1516, 2011, Biol Philos 28:719–745, 2013), which is sympathetic to the case of SR, seem to take diametrically opposed positions. The West camp criticizes advocates of SR for conflating proximate and ultimate causation. SR is said to be a proximate mechanism that is put forward by its advocates as an ultimate explanation (...)
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  • Cooperation in a Complex World: The Role of Proximate Factors in Ultimate Explanations. [REVIEW]Kim Sterelny - 2013 - Biological Theory 7 (4):358-367.
    Mayr’s distinction between proximate and ultimate explanation is justly famous, marking out a division of explanatory labor in biology. But while it is a useful heuristic in many cases, there are others in which proximate factors play an important role in shaping evolutionary trajectories, and in such cases, each project is sensitive to, and relevant to, the other. This general methodological claim is developed in the context of a discussion of human cooperation, and in particular, in a discussion on the (...)
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  • Reciprocal Causation and the Proximate–Ultimate Distinction.T. E. Dickins & R. A. Barton - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):747-756.
    Laland and colleagues have sought to challenge the proximate–ultimate distinction claiming that it imposes a unidirectional model of causation, is limited in its capacity to account for complex biological phenomena, and hinders progress in biology. In this article the core of their argument is critically analyzed. It is claimed that contrary to their claims Laland et al. rely upon the proximate–ultimate distinction to make their points and that their alternative conception of reciprocal causation refers to phenomena that were already accounted (...)
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  • Intrinsic Estimates of Fitness Affect the Causal Structure of Evolutionary Change.J. H. van Hateren - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):729-746.
    The causal structure of Darwinian evolution by natural selection is investigated. Its basic scheme is reproduction resulting from a feedback loop driven by internal and external causes. Causation internal to the loop connects genotype, development, phenotype, and fitness, with environmental constraints on the latter preventing runaway reproduction. External causes driving the core loop are environmental change and genetic change. This basic causal structure is complicated by modern additions such as control of mutation rate, niche construction, interactions between evolution and development, (...)
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  • Using Causal Models to Integrate Proximate and Ultimate Causation.Jun Otsuka - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (1):19-37.
    Ernst Mayr’s classical work on the nature of causation in biology has had a huge influence on biologists as well as philosophers. Although his distinction between proximate and ultimate causation recently came under criticism from those who emphasize the role of development in evolutionary processes, the formal relationship between these two notions remains elusive. Using causal graph theory, this paper offers a unified framework to systematically translate a given “proximate” causal structure into an “ultimate” evolutionary response, and illustrates evolutionary implications (...)
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  • Multilevel Causation and the Extended Synthesis.Maximiliano Martínez & Maurizio Esposito - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (2):209-220.
    In this article we argue that the classical—linear and bottom-up directed—models of causation in biology, and the ‘‘proximate/ultimate’’ dichotomy, are inappropriate to capture the complexity inherent to biological processes. We introduce a new notion of ‘‘multilevel causation’’ where old dichotomies such as proximate/ultimate and bottom-up/ top-down are reinterpreted within a multilevel, web-like, approach. In briefly reviewing some recent work on complexity, EvoDevo, carcinogenesis, autocatalysis, comparative genomics, animal regeneration, phenotypic plasticity, and niche construction, we will argue that such reinterpretation is a (...)
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  • More on How and Why: A Response to Commentaries.Kevin N. Laland, John Odling-Smee, William Hoppitt & Tobias Uller - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):793-810.
    We are grateful to the commentators for taking the time to respond to our article. Too many interesting and important points have been raised for us to tackle them all in this response, and so in the below we have sought to draw out the major themes. These include problems with both the term ‘ultimate causation’ and the proximate-ultimate causation dichotomy more generally, clarification of the meaning of reciprocal causation, discussion of issues related to the nature of development and phenotypic (...)
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  • Proximate and Ultimate Causes: How Come? And What For? [REVIEW]David Haig - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):781-786.
    Proximate and ultimate causes in evolutionary biology have come to conflate two distinctions. The first is a distinction between immediate and historical causes. The second is between explanations of mechanism and adaptive function. Mayr emphasized the first distinction but many evolutionary biologists use proximate and ultimate causes to refer to the second. I recommend that ‘ultimate cause’ be abandoned as ambiguous.
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  • Why How and Why Aren’T Enough: More Problems with Mayr’s Proximate-Ultimate Distinction.Brett Calcott - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):767-780.
    Like Laland et al., I think Mayr’s distinction is problematic, but I identify a further problem with it. I argue that Mayr’s distinction is a false dichotomy, and obscures an important question about evolutionary change. I show how this question, once revealed, sheds light on some debates in evo-devo that Laland et al.’s analysis cannot, and suggest that it provides a different view about how future integration between biological disciplines might proceed.
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  • Engaging the Adaptive Subject: Learning Evolution Beyond the Cell Walls.Ramsey Affifi - 2020 - Biological Theory 15 (3):121-135.
    According to the modern synthesis, evolution is the gradual change of gene frequencies in a population. The MS is closely allied to adaptationist explanations of phenotypes, where organismic form and behavior is treated as previously selected for and owes its genesis to some remote past. However, some new theories of evolution broadly aligned with the extended evolutionary synthesis, in particular developmental plasticity theory and niche construction theory, foreground the fact that evolution is sometimes much more rapid than previously imagined, and (...)
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  • Reciprocal Causation and the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis.Andrew Buskell - 2019 - Biological Theory 14 (4):267-279.
    Kevin Laland and colleagues have put forward a number of arguments motivating an extended evolutionary synthesis. Here I examine Laland et al.'s central concept of reciprocal causation. Reciprocal causation features in many arguments supporting an expanded evolutionary framework, yet few of these arguments are clearly delineated. Here I clarify the concept and make explicit three arguments in which it features. I identify where skeptics can—and are—pushing back against these arguments, and highlight what I see as the empirical, explanatory, and methodological (...)
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  • Three Kinds of Niche Construction.Bendik Hellem Aaby & Grant Ramsey - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:000-000.
    Niche construction theory concerns how organisms can change selection pressures by altering the feature–factor relationship between themselves and their environment. These alterations are standardly understood to be brought about through two kinds of organism–environment interaction: perturbative and relocational niche construction. We argue that a reconceptualization is needed on the grounds that if a niche is understood as the feature–factor relationship, then there are three fundamental ways in which organisms can engage in niche construction: constitutive, relational, and external niche construction. We (...)
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  • Mayr and Tinbergen: Disentangling and Integrating.Brandon A. Conley - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (1):4.
    Research on animal behavior is typically organized according to a combination of two influential frameworks: Ernst Mayr’s distinction between proximate and ultimate causes, and Niko Tinbergen’s “four questions”. My aim is to debunk two common interpretive misconceptions about Mayr’s proximate–ultimate distinction and its relationship to Tinbergen’s four questions, and to offer a new interpretation that avoids both. The first misconception is that the proximate–ultimate distinction maps cleanly onto Tinbergen’s four questions, marking a boundary between Tinbergen’s evolutionary and survival value questions (...)
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  • Anthropogenic climate change as a monumental niche construction process: background and philosophical aspects.Andra Meneganzin, Telmo Pievani & Stefano Caserini - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (4):1-20.
    Climate change has historically been an evolutionary determinant for our species, affecting both hominin evolutionary innovations and extinction rates, and the early waves of migration and expansion outside Africa. Today Homo sapiens has turned itself into a major geological force, able to cause a biodiversity crisis comparable to previous mass extinction events, shaping the Earth surface and impacting biogeochemical cycles and the climate at a global level. We argue that anthropogenically-driven climate change must be understood in terms of a monumental (...)
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  • Embodied Cognition and Circular Causality: On the Role of Constitutive Autonomy in the Reciprocal Coupling of Perception and Action.David Vernon, Robert Lowe, Serge Thill & Tom Ziemke - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
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  • Beliefs as Self-Sustaining Networks: Drawing Parallels Between Networks of Ecosystems and Adults’ Predictions.Ramon D. Castillo, Heidi Kloos, Michael J. Richardson & Talia Waltzer - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
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  • Population and Organismal Perspectives on Trait Origins.Brian McLoone - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 83:101288.
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  • Musical Pluralism and the Science of Music.Adrian Currie & Anton Killin - 2016 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 6 (1):9-30.
    The scientific investigation of music requires contributions from a diverse array of disciplines. Given the diverse methodologies, interests and research targets of the disciplines involved, we argue that there is a plurality of legitimate research questions about music, necessitating a focus on integration. In light of this we recommend a pluralistic conception of music—that there is no unitary definition divorced from some discipline, research question or context. This has important implications for how the scientific study of music ought to proceed: (...)
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  • Fighting the Good Cause: Meaning, Purpose, Difference, and Choice.David Haig - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (5):675-697.
    Concepts of cause, choice, and information are closely related. A cause is a choice that can be held responsible. It is a difference that makes a difference. Information about past causes and their effects is a valuable commodity because it can be used to guide future choices. Information about criteria of choice is generated by choosing a subset from an ensemble for ‘reasons’ and has meaning for an interpreter when it is used to achieve an end. Natural selection evolves interpreters (...)
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  • On the Origins of Physical Cognition in Corvids.Ivo Jacobs - 2017 - Dissertation, Lund University
    Physical cognition involves a host of cognitive abilities that enable understanding and manipulation of the physical world. Corvids, the bird family that includes crows, ravens and jays, are renowned for their cognitive abilities, but still little is known about their folk physics. This thesis explores the origins of physical cognition in corvids by investigating its mechanisms, development,fitness value and phylogeny in a wide context that includes theoretical and empirical studies.String pulling is a valuable paradigm for addressing these questions. Many animals (...)
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  • Evolutionary Debunking Arguments in Ethics.Andreas Lech Mogensen - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    I consider whether evolutionary explanations can debunk our moral beliefs. Most contemporary discussion in this area is centred on the question of whether debunking implications follow from our ability to explain elements of human morality in terms of natural selection, given that there has been no selection for true moral beliefs. By considering the most prominent arguments in the literature today, I offer reasons to think that debunking arguments of this kind fail. However, I argue that a successful evolutionary debunking (...)
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  • Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and the Moral Niche.Eleonora Severini - 2016 - Philosophia 44 (3):865-875.
    The so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. When applied to morality, such arguments are intended to undermine moral realism. In this paper I will discuss Andreas Mogensen’s recent effort to secure moral realism against EDAs. Mogensen attempts to undermine the challenge provided by EDAs in metaethics through the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes in biology. The problem with this move is that the proximate/ultimate distinction is misconceived. (...)
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  • Engineering and Biology: Counsel for a Continued Relationship.Brett Calcott, Arnon Levy, Mark L. Siegal, Orkun S. Soyer & Andreas Wagner - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (1):50-59.
    Biologists frequently draw on ideas and terminology from engineering. Evolutionary systems biology—with its circuits, switches, and signal processing—is no exception. In parallel with the frequent links drawn between biology and engineering, there is ongoing criticism against this cross-fertilization, using the argument that over-simplistic metaphors from engineering are likely to mislead us as engineering is fundamentally different from biology. In this article, we clarify and reconfigure the link between biology and engineering, presenting it in a more favorable light. We do so (...)
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  • The Niche Construction Perspective: A Critical Appraisal.Thomas C. Scott-Phillips, Kevin N. Laland, David M. Shuker, Thomas E. Dickins & Stuart A. West - unknown
    Niche construction refers to the activities of organisms that bring about changes in their environments, many of which are evolutionarily and ecologically consequential. Advocates of niche construction theory (NCT) believe that standard evolutionary theory fails to recognize the full importance of niche construction, and consequently propose a novel view of evolution, in which niche construction and its legacy over time (ecological inheritance) are described as evolutionary processes, equivalent in importance to natural selection. Here, we subject NCT to critical evaluation, in (...)
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  • Rethinking Causation in Cancer with Evolutionary Developmental Biology.Katherine E. Liu - 2017 - Biological Theory 13 (4):228-242.
    Despite the productivity of basic cancer research, cancer continues to be a health burden to society because this research has not yielded corresponding clinical applications. Many proposed solutions to this dilemma have revolved around implementing organizational and policy changes related to cancer research. Here I argue for a different solution: a new conceptualization of causation in cancer. Neither the standard molecular biomarker approaches nor evolutionary biology approaches to cancer fully capture its complex causal dynamics, even when considered jointly. These approaches (...)
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  • Causal Mechanisms of Evolution and the Capacity for Niche Construction.Ward B. Watt - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):757-766.
    Ernst Mayr proposed a distinction between “proximate”, mechanistic, and “ultimate”, evolutionary, causes of biological phenomena. This dichotomy has influenced the thinking of many biologists, but it is increasingly perceived as impeding modern studies of evolutionary processes, including study of “niche construction” in which organisms alter their environments in ways supportive of their evolutionary success. Some still find value for this dichotomy in its separation of answers to “how?” versus “why?”questions about evolution. But “why is A?” questions about evolution necessarily take (...)
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  • The Extended Phenotype: A Comparison with Niche Construction Theory.David A. Wells - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (4):547-567.
    While niche construction theory locates animal artefacts in their constructors’ environment, hence treating them as capable of exerting selective pressure on both the constructors and their descendants, the extended phenotype concept assimilates artefacts with their constructors’ genes. Analogous contrasts apply in the case of endoparasite and brood parasite genes influencing host behaviour. The explanatory power of these competing approaches are assessed by re-examining the core chapters of Richard Dawkins’ _The Extended Phenotype_. Because animal artefacts have multiple evolutionary consequences for their (...)
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  • The Proximate–Ultimate Distinction and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: Causal Irrelevance Versus Explanatory Abstraction.Massimo Pigliucci & Raphael Scholl - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):653-670.
    Mayr’s proximate–ultimate distinction has received renewed interest in recent years. Here we discuss its role in arguments about the relevance of developmental to evolutionary biology. We show that two recent critiques of the proximate–ultimate distinction fail to explain why developmental processes in particular should be of interest to evolutionary biologists. We trace these failures to a common problem: both critiques take the proximate–ultimate distinction to neglect specific causal interactions in nature. We argue that this is implausible, and that the distinction (...)
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  • Why Development Matters.Rachael L. Brown - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (6):889-899.
    Günter Wagner’s Homology, Genes, and Evolutionary Innovation is a compelling, and empirically well-supported account of the evolution of character identity and character origination which emphasizes the importance of homology and novelty as central explananda for 21st century evolutionary biology. In this essay review, I focus on the similarities and differences between the structuralist picture of evolutionary biology advocated by Wagner, and that presented by standard evolutionary theory. First, I outline the ways in which Wagner’s genetic theory of homology diverges from (...)
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  • A Philosophical Perspective on Evolutionary Systems Biology.Maureen A. O’Malley, Orkun S. Soyer & Mark L. Siegal - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (1):6-17.
    Evolutionary systems biology is an emerging hybrid approach that integrates methods, models, and data from evolutionary and systems biology. Drawing on themes that arose at a cross-disciplinary meeting on ESB in 2013, we discuss in detail some of the explanatory friction that arises in the interaction between evolutionary and systems biology. These tensions appear because of different modeling approaches, diverse explanatory aims and strategies, and divergent views about the scope of the evolutionary synthesis. We locate these discussions in the context (...)
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  • Answering Evolutionary Questions: A Guide for Mechanistic Biologists.Joanna Masel & Daniel E. L. Promislow - 2016 - Bioessays 38 (7):704-711.
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  • Towards an Evolutionary Developmental Biology of Cooperation?Tobias Uller & Heikki Helanterä - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 48:267-271.
  • Causality, Teleology, and Thought Experiments in Biology.Marco Buzzoni - 2015 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 46 (2):279-299.
    Thought experiments de facto play many different roles in biology: economical, ethical, technical and so forth. This paper, however, is interested in whether there are any distinctive features of biological TEs as such. The question may be settled in the affirmative because TEs in biology have a function that is intimately connected with the epistemological and methodological status of biology. Peculiar to TEs in biology is the fact that the reflexive, typically human concept of finality may be profitably employed to (...)
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