Unification and explanation

Synthese 131 (1):145 - 154 (2002)
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Abstract

In this article we criticize two recent articles that examinethe relation between explanation and unification. Halonen and Hintikka (1999), on the one hand,claim that no unification is explanation. Schurz (1999), on the other hand, claims that all explanationis unification. We give counterexamples to both claims. We propose a pluralistic approach to the problem:explanation sometimes consists in unification, but in other cases different kinds of explanation(e.g., causal explanation) are required; and none of these kinds is more fundamental.

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2009-01-28

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Maarten Van Dyck
Ghent University

Citations of this work

The Unity of Science.Jordi Cat - 2013 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Can a reductionist be a pluralist?Daniel Steel - 2004 - Biology and Philosophy 19 (1):55-73.
Contextualism, explanation and the social sciences.Harold Kincaid - 2004 - Philosophical Explorations 7 (3):201 – 218.

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References found in this work

Explanatory unification and the causal structure of the world.Philip Kitcher - 1989 - In Philip Kitcher & Wesley Salmon (eds.), Scientific Explanation. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. pp. 410-505.
Explanation as unification.Gerhard Schurz - 1999 - Synthese 120 (1):95-114.

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