Scientific realism in the age of string theory

Abstract
String theory currently is the only viable candidate for a unified description of all known natural forces. This article tries to demonstrate that the fundamental structural and methodological differences that set string theory apart from other physical theories have important philosophical consequences. Focussing on implications for the realism debate in philosophy of science, it is argued that both poles of that debate face new problems in the context of string theory. On the one hand, the claim of underdetermination of scientific theory by the available empirical data, which is a pivotal element of empiricism, loses much of its plausibility. On the other hand, the dissolution of any meaningful notion of an external ontological object destroys the basis for conventional versions of scientific realism. String theory seems to suggest an intermediate position akin to Structural Realism that is based on a newly emerging principle, to be called the principle of theoretical uniqueness.
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Citations of this work BETA
Time Remains.Gryb Sean & P. Y. Thébault Karim - 2016 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 67 (3):663-705.
A Philosopher Looks at String Dualities.Dean Rickles - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 42 (1):54-67.
A Philosopher Looks at String Dualities.Dean Rickles - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 42 (1):54-67.
The Internal and External Problems of String Theory: A Philosophical View. [REVIEW]Reiner Hedrich - 2007 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 38 (2):261 - 278.

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The Internal and External Problems of String Theory: A Philosophical View. [REVIEW]Reiner Hedrich - 2007 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 38 (2):261 - 278.
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