British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61 (1):1-25 (2010)
AbstractThis paper examines contemporary attempts to explicate the explanatory role of mathematics in the physical sciences. Most such approaches involve developing so-called mapping accounts of the relationships between the physical world and mathematical structures. The paper argues that the use of idealizations in physical theorizing poses serious difficulties for such mapping accounts. A new approach to the applicability of mathematics is proposed.
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References found in this work
The Devil in the Details: Asymptotic Reasoning in Explanation, Reduction, and Emergence.Robert W. Batterman - 2001 - Oxford University Press.
Galilean Idealization.Ernan McMullin - 1985 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 16 (3):247.
Are There Genuine Mathematical Explanations of Physical Phenomena?Alan Baker - 2005 - Mind 114 (454):223-238.
Citations of this work
Minimal Model Explanations.Robert W. Batterman & Collin C. Rice - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (3):349-376.
What Makes a Scientific Explanation Distinctively Mathematical?Marc Lange - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (3):485-511.
Moving Beyond Causes: Optimality Models and Scientific Explanation.Collin Rice - 2015 - Noûs 49 (3):589-615.
Less is Different: Emergence and Reduction Reconciled. [REVIEW]Jeremy Butterfield - 2011 - Foundations of Physics 41 (6):1065-1135.
Emergence, Reduction and Supervenience: A Varied Landscape. [REVIEW]Jeremy Butterfield - 2011 - Foundations of Physics 41 (6):920-959.
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