Model Pluralism

Philosophy of the Social Sciences 50 (2):91-114 (2019)
  Copy   BIBTEX


This paper introduces and defends an account of model-based science that I dub model pluralism. I argue that despite a growing awareness in the philosophy of science literature of the multiplicity, diversity, and richness of models and modeling practices, more radical conclusions follow from this recognition than have previously been inferred. Going against the tendency within the literature to generalize from single models, I explicate and defend the following two core theses: any successful analysis of models must target sets of models, their multiplicity of functions within science, and their scientific context and history and for almost any aspect x of phenomenon y, scientists require multiple models to achieve scientific goal z.

Similar books and articles

Understanding pluralism in climate modeling.Wendy Parker - 2006 - Foundations of Science 11 (4):349-368.
Modeling model selection in model pluralism.Till Grüne-Yanoff & Caterina Marchionni - 2018 - Journal of Economic Methodology 25 (3):265-275.
Two models of pluralism and tolerance.Will Kymlicka - 1992 - Analyse & Kritik 14 (1):33-56.
Integrative pluralism.Sandra D. Mitchell - 2002 - Biology and Philosophy 17 (1):55-70.
Feminist implications of model-based science.Angela Potochnik - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 43 (2):383-389.
Causal models and evidential pluralism in econometrics.Alessio Moneta & Federica Russo - 2014 - Journal of Economic Methodology 21 (1):54-76.


Added to PP

97 (#137,022)

6 months
21 (#71,131)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Walter Veit
University of Bristol

References found in this work

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.Thomas S. Kuhn - 1962 - Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Edited by Ian Hacking.
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.Thomas Samuel Kuhn - 1962 - Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Edited by Otto Neurath.
How the laws of physics lie.Nancy Cartwright - 1983 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The meaning of 'meaning'.Hillary Putnam - 1975 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7:131-193.

View all 67 references / Add more references