Synthese 182 (3):413-432 (2011)

Authors
Aidan Lyon
University of Maryland, College Park
Abstract
Some have argued that chance and determinism are compatible in order to account for the objectivity of probabilities in theories that are compatible with determinism, like Classical Statistical Mechanics (CSM) and Evolutionary Theory (ET). Contrarily, some have argued that chance and determinism are incompatible, and so such probabilities are subjective. In this paper, I argue that both of these positions are unsatisfactory. I argue that the probabilities of theories like CSM and ET are not chances, but also that they are not subjective probabilities either. Rather, they are a third type of probability, which I call counterfactual probability. The main distinguishing feature of counterfactual-probability is the role it plays in conveying important counterfactual information in explanations. This distinguishes counterfactual probability from chance as a second concept of objective probability.
Keywords Chance  Determinism  Probability concepts  Objective probability  Credence
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Reprint years 2011
DOI 10.1007/s11229-010-9750-2
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References found in this work BETA

Time and Chance.David Z. Albert - 2000 - Harvard University Press.
Humean Supervenience Debugged.David K. Lewis - 1994 - Mind 103 (412):473--490.
What Conditional Probability Could Not Be.Alan Hájek - 2003 - Synthese 137 (3):273--323.

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Citations of this work BETA

Interpretations of Probability.Alan Hájek - 2007 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Emergent Chance.Christian List & Marcus Pivato - 2015 - Philosophical Review 124 (1):119-152.
"Actual" Does Not Imply "Feasible".Nicholas Southwood & David Wiens - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (11):3037-3060.
Hot-Blooded Gluttons: Dependency, Coherence, and Method in the Historical Sciences.Adrian Currie - 2017 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 68 (4):929-952.

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