In Lorenzo Baravalle & Luciana Zaterka (eds.), Life and Evolution: Latin American Essays on the History and Philosophy of Biology. pp. 209-229 (2020)

How questions and why questions interact in complex ways within biological practice. One of the most fruitful accounts to think about this relation is the widely known systemic approach, which has its origin mainly in the works of Robert Cummins (1975, 1983). As we will show, this approach effectively manages to capture much of what biologists do, especially in areas such as molecular biology, neuroscience and neuroethology. Our aim with this work is to discuss the metatheoretical status of the presuppositions behind systemic analysis. We will hold that these assumptions are of an empirical nature, and that they can be reconstructed as parts of a theory
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