Bayesian Confirmation: A Means with No End

British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (4):737-749 (2015)
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Abstract

Any theory of confirmation must answer the following question: what is the purpose of its conception of confirmation for scientific inquiry? In this article, we argue that no Bayesian conception of confirmation can be used for its primary intended purpose, which we take to be making a claim about how worthy of belief various hypotheses are. Then we consider a different use to which Bayesian confirmation might be put, namely, determining the epistemic value of experimental outcomes, and thus to decide which experiments to carry out. Interestingly, Bayesian confirmation theorists rule out that confirmation be used for this purpose. We conclude that Bayesian confirmation is a means with no end. 1 Introduction2 Bayesian Confirmation Theory3 Bayesian Confirmation and Belief4 Confirmation and the Value of Experiments5 Conclusion.

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Author Profiles

Franz Huber
University of Toronto, St. George Campus
Peter Brössel
Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Citations of this work

Bayesian Philosophy of Science.Jan Sprenger & Stephan Hartmann - 2019 - Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press.
State of the field: Measuring information and confirmation.Vincenzo Crupi & Katya Tentori - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 47:81-90.
Idealizations and Partitions: A Defense of Robustness Analysis.Gareth P. Fuller & Armin W. Schulz - 2021 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 11 (4):1-15.

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