The role of Bayesian philosophy within Bayesian model selection

European Journal for Philosophy of Science 3 (1):101-114 (2013)
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Bayesian model selection has frequently been the focus of philosophical inquiry (e.g., Forster, Br J Philos Sci 46:399–424, 1995; Bandyopadhyay and Boik, Philos Sci 66:S390–S402, 1999; Dowe et al., Br J Philos Sci 58:709–754, 2007). This paper argues that Bayesian model selection procedures are very diverse in their inferential target and their justification, and substantiates this claim by means of case studies on three selected procedures: MML, BIC and DIC. Hence, there is no tight link between Bayesian model selection and Bayesian philosophy. Consequently, arguments for or against Bayesian reasoning based on properties of Bayesian model selection procedures should be treated with great caution



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Jan Sprenger
University of Turin