Authors
Andrew Wayne
University of Guelph
Abstract
The goal of this paper is to show how scientific explanation functions in the context of idealized models. It argues that the aspect of explanation most urgently requiring investigation is the nature of the connection between global theories and explanatory local models. This aspect is neglected in traditional accounts of explanation. The paper examines causal, minimal model, and structural accounts of model-based explanation. It argues that they too fail to offer an account of the connection with global theory that can justify the explanatory power of an idealized local model, and consequently these accounts are unable effectively to distinguish explanatory from non-explanatory models. On the account proposed here, scientific explanation requires theoretical integration between the local model described in the explanation and a global theory with independent explanatory power.
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DOI 10.1007/s13194-017-0190-4
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References found in this work BETA

Making Things Happen. A Theory of Causal Explanation.Michael Strevens - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):233-249.
Explanation and Scientific Understanding.Michael Friedman - 1974 - Journal of Philosophy 71 (1):5-19.
Explaining Science: A Cognitive Approach.Jeffrey S. Poland - 1988 - Philosophical Review 100 (4):653-656.
Explanatory Unification.Philip Kitcher - 1981 - Philosophy of Science 48 (4):507-531.
Galilean Idealization.Ernan McMullin - 1985 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 16 (3):247.

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