Perspectival models and theory unification

Abstract
Given that scientific realism is based on the assumption that there is a connection between a model's predictive success and its truth, and given the success of multiple incompatible models in scientific practice, the realist has a problem. When the different models can be shown to arise as different approximations to a unified theory, however, one might think the realist to be able to accommodate such cases. I discuss a special class of models and argue that a realist interpretation has to understand these models of a system as ‘ perspectival ’, in close analogy to different spatial perspectives onto the same object. For this sort of case, I also respond to Morrison's recent claim that in the process of unifying models into an overarching theory, explanatory and descriptive power are lost, leaving the unified theory with less of a claim to a realist interpretation than the models themselves. Introduction Perspectival models from singular perturbation problems Unification of perspectives without losses of explanatory power Perspectives as different levels of a system Perspectival models, idealizations and pluralism
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/bjps/axi128
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 29,848
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Twilight of the Perfect Model Model.Paul Teller - 2001 - Erkenntnis 55 (3):393-415.
Two Concepts of Intertheoretic Reduction.Thomas Nickles - 1973 - Journal of Philosophy 70 (April):181-201.
Science as Representation: Flouting the Criteria.Bas C. van Fraassen - 2004 - Philosophy of Science 71 (5):794-804.

View all 6 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
One Phenomenon, Many Models: Inconsistency and Complementarity.Margaret Morrison - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 42 (2):342-351.
On the Import of Constraints in Complex Dynamical Systems.Cliff Hooker - 2013 - Foundations of Science 18 (4):757-780.
One Phenomenon, Many Models: Inconsistency and Complementarity.Margaret Morrison - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 42 (2):342-351.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total downloads
80 ( #71,238 of 2,210,506 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #166,029 of 2,210,506 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature