Models Don’t Decompose That Way: A Holistic View of Idealized Models

British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 70 (1):179-208 (2019)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Many accounts of scientific modelling assume that models can be decomposed into the contributions made by their accurate and inaccurate parts. These accounts then argue that the inaccurate parts of the model can be justified by distorting only what is irrelevant. In this paper, I argue that this decompositional strategy requires three assumptions that are not typically met by our best scientific models. In response, I propose an alternative view in which idealized models are characterized as holistically distorted representations that are justified by allowing for the application of various modelling techniques.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,227

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Models, confirmation, and chaos.Jeffrey Koperski - 1998 - Philosophy of Science 65 (4):624-648.
Understanding (With) Toy Models.Alexander Reutlinger, Dominik Hangleiter & Stephan Hartmann - 2016 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axx005.
Scientific Models.Stephen M. Downes - 2011 - Philosophy Compass 6 (11):757-764.
Differences between synchronic and idealized diachronic theory-elements: A reply to Martti Kuokkanen and Timo Tuomivaara. [REVIEW]Michaela Haasse - 1997 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 28 (2):359-366.
Darcy's Law and Structural Explanation in Hydrology.James R. Hofmann & Paul A. Hofmann - 1992 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1992:23 - 35.
Representing with physical models.Ronald Giere - 2009 - In Paul Humphreys & Cyrille Imbert (eds.), Models, Simulations, and Representations. Routledge.


Added to PP

118 (#152,745)

6 months
27 (#111,694)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Collin Rice
Colorado State University

Citations of this work

Model Evaluation: An Adequacy-for-Purpose View.Wendy S. Parker - 2020 - Philosophy of Science 87 (3):457-477.
Deidealization: No Easy Reversals.Tarja Knuuttila & Mary S. Morgan - 2019 - Philosophy of Science 86 (4):641-661.
Understanding realism.Collin Rice - 2019 - Synthese 198 (5):4097-4121.
Concrete Scale Models, Essential Idealization, and Causal Explanation.Christopher Pincock - 2022 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 73 (2):299-323.

View all 32 citations / Add more citations