Randomness and the justification of induction

Synthese 138 (1):79 - 99 (2004)
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In 1947 Donald Cary Williams claimed in The Ground of Induction to have solved the Humean problem of induction, by means of an adaptation of reasoning first advanced by Bernoulli in 1713. Later on David Stove defended and improved upon Williams’ argument in The Rational- ity of Induction (1986). We call this proposed solution of induction the ‘Williams-Stove sampling thesis’. There has been no lack of objections raised to the sampling thesis, and it has not been widely accepted. In our opinion, though, none of these objections has the slightest force, and, moreover, the sampling thesis is undoubtedly true. What we will argue in this paper is that one particular objection that has been raised on numerous occasions is misguided. This concerns the randomness of the sample on which the inductive extrapolation is based

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James Franklin
University of New South Wales

Citations of this work

Logic in reality.Joseph E. Brenner - 2008 - Dordrecht: Springer.
The problem of induction.John Vickers - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Is the Humean defeated by induction?Benjamin T. H. Smart - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (2):319-332.
Direct Inference in the Material Theory of Induction.William Peden - 2019 - Philosophy of Science 86 (4):672-695.

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A treatise on probability.John Maynard Keynes - 1921 - Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications.
The two concepts of probability: The problem of probability.Rudolf Carnap - 1945 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 5 (4):513-532.
A Treatise on Probability.John Maynard Keynes - 1921 - London,: Macmillan & co..
On inductive logic.Rudolf Carnap - 1945 - Philosophy of Science 12 (2):72-97.
The rationality of induction.David Charles Stove - 1986 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

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