International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 22 (3):277 – 292 (2008)
Scientists of many disciplines use theoretical models to explain and predict the dynamics of the world. They often have to rely on digital computer simulations to draw predictions fromthe model. But to deliver phenomenologically adequate results, simulations deviate from the assumptions of the theoretical model. Therefore the role of simulations in scientific explanation demands itself an explanation. This paper analyzes the relation between real-world system, theoretical model, and simulation. It is argued that simulations do not explain processes in the real world directly. The way in which simulations help explaining real-world processes is conceived as indirect, mediated by the theoretical model. Simulacra are characterized further, and turn out to be a priori measurable. This gives a clue to a better understanding of the epistemic role of computer simulations in scientific research.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
Thinking About Mechanisms.Peter K. Machamer, Lindley Darden & Carl F. Craver - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (1):1-25.
Rethinking Mechanistic Explanation.Stuart Glennan - 2002 - Proceedings of the Philosophy of Science Association 2002 (3):S342-353.
Extending Ourselves: Computational Science, Empiricism, and Scientific Method.Paul Humphreys - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
Role Functions, Mechanisms, and Hierarchy.Carl F. Craver - 2001 - Philosophy of Science 68 (1):53-74.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
How Simulations Fail.Patrick Grim, Robert Rosenberger, Adam Rosenfeld, Brian Anderson & Robb E. Eason - 2013 - Synthese 190 (12):2367-2390.
Thought Experiments and Mental Simulations.John Zeimbekis - 2011 - In Katerina Ierodiakonou & Sophie Roux (eds.), Thought Experiments in Methodological and Historical Contexts. Brill.
Ethical Responsibilities of Software Developers in Developing Simulations.William Spees - 2001 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 15 (1):59-64.
The World as a Process: Simulations in the Natural and Social Sciences.Stephan Hartmann - 1996 - In Rainer Hegselmann (ed.), Modelling and Simulation in the Social Sciences from the Philosophy of Science Point of View.
Biorobotic Simulations Might Offer Some Advantages Over Purely Computational Ones.Donald R. Franceschetti - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (6):1058-1059.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads138 ( #34,941 of 2,178,178 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #316,504 of 2,178,178 )
How can I increase my downloads?