Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 36 (2):373-395 (2005)
Philosophers of neuroscience have traditionally described interfield integration using reduction models. Such models describe formal inferential relations between theories at different levels. I argue against reduction and for a mechanistic model of interfield integration. According to the mechanistic model, different fields integrate their research by adding constraints on a multilevel description of a mechanism. Mechanistic integration may occur at a given level or in the effort to build a theory that oscillates among several levels. I develop this alternative model using a putative exemplar of reduction in contemporary neuroscience: the relationship between the psychological phenomena of learning and memory and the electrophysiological phenomenon known as Long-Term Potentiation. A new look at this historical episode reveals the relative virtues of the mechanistic model over reduction as an account of interfield integration
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Citations of this work BETA
Systems Biology and the Integration of Mechanistic Explanation and Mathematical Explanation.Ingo Brigandt - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (4):477-492.
Beyond Reduction and Pluralism: Toward an Epistemology of Explanatory Integration in Biology.Ingo Brigandt - 2010 - Erkenntnis 73 (3):295-311.
After the Philosophy of Mind: Replacing Scholasticism with Science.Anthony Chemero & Michael Silberstein - 2008 - Philosophy of Science 75 (1):1-27.
Mechanistic Explanation Without the Ontic Conception.Cory Wright - 2012 - European Journal of Philosophy of Science 2 (3):375-394.
The Concept of Mechanism in Biology.Daniel J. Nicholson - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (1):152-163.
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