Abstract
This article considers interventionist arguments for downward causation and non-fundamental level causal explanation from the point of view of inferring causation from experiments. Several authors have utilised the interventionist theory of causal explanation to argue that the causal exclusion argument is moot and that higher-level as well as downward causation is real. I show that this argument can be made when levels are understood as levels of grain, leaving us with a choice between causal explanations pitched at different levels. Causal proportionality has been suggested as a principle for choosing the correct level of description for causal explanations, but this suggestion has serious problems. I offer an alternative principle, based on the idea that explanations should track actual difference-makers. I then consider claims about systems causally influencing their own parts. Such claims risk conceptual confusion for the same reason as the exclusion argument, by conflating causal and constitutive dependencies. The distinction between causation and constitution is used to give criteria for the correct use of the idea of downward causation.
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Reprint years 2016, 2017
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DOI 10.1080/02698595.2017.1316116
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Making Things Happen. A Theory of Causal Explanation.Michael Strevens - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):233-249.
Mental Causation.Stephen Yablo - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (2):245-280.

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