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Federica Bocchi
University of Copenhagen
  1. Are We in a Sixth Mass Extinction? The Challenges of Answering and Value of Asking.Federica Bocchi, Alisa Bokulich, Leticia Castillo Brache, Gloria Grand-Pierre & Aja Watkins - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.
    In both scientific and popular circles it is often said that we are in the midst of a sixth mass extinction. Although the urgency of our present environmental crises is not in doubt, such claims of a present mass extinction are highly controversial scientifically. Our aims are, first, to get to the bottom of this scientific debate by shedding philosophical light on the many conceptual and methodological challenges involved in answering this scientific question, and, second, to offer new philosophical perspectives (...)
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    Pathogen versus microbiome causation in the holobiont.Aja Watkins & Federica Bocchi - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (1):1-6.
    In their paper “How Causal are Microbiomes? A Comparison with the Helicobacter pylori Explanation of Ulcers,” Lynch, Parke, and O’Malley successfully argue that certain causal attributions made to the microbiome have not satisfied Koch’s postulates nor the interventionist framework. However, their argument involves an implicit assumption that cases such as H. pylori are sufficiently similar to cases involving the microbiome, such that causal attributions to both should be evaluated according to the same causal framework. Our commentary targets this assumption. First, (...)
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    Metrics in Biodiversity Conservation and the Value-Free Ideal.Federica Bocchi - forthcoming - Synthese.
    This paper examines one aspect of the legacy of the Value-Free Ideal in conservation science: the view that measurements and metrics in conservation are value-free epistemic tools detached from ideological, ethical, social, and, generally, non-epistemic considerations. Contrary to this view, I will argue that traditional measurement practices entrenched in conservation are in fact permeated with non-epistemic values. I challenge the received view by revealing three non-epistemic assumptions underlying traditional metrics: 1) a human-environment demarcation, 2) the desirability of a people-free landscape, (...)
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  4. Kuhn’s ‘5th Law of Thermodynamics’: Measurement, Data, and Anomalies.Alisa Bokulich & Federica Bocchi - 2024 - In K. Brad Wray (ed.), Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions at 60. Cambridge University Press.
    We reconstruct Kuhn’s philosophy of measurement and data paying special attention to what he calls the “fifth law of thermodynamics”. According to this "law," there will always be discrepancies between experimental results and scientists’ prior expectations. The history of experiments to determine the values of the fundamental constants offers a striking illustration of Kuhn’s fifth law of thermodynamics, with no experiment giving quite the expected result. We highlight the synergy between Kuhn’s view and the systematic project of iteratively determining the (...)
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    Biodiversity vs. paleodiversity measurements: the incommensurability problem.Federica Bocchi - 2022 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 12 (4):1-24.
    Estimating whether the Earth’s biota is in the middle of a crisis relies heavily on comparisons between present and past data about biodiversity or biodiversity surrogates. Although the past is a crucial source of information to assess the severity of the current biodiversity crisis, substantive conceptual and methodological questions remain about how paleodiversity and biodiversity are to be properly compared. I argue that to justify claims of a current biodiversity crisis is harder than it appears. More precisely, I claim that (...)
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  6. Philosophy of Biology and Metaphysics: Reconsidering the Aristotelian Approach.Federica Bocchi - 2016 - Dissertation, Università Degli Studi di Parma
  7.  31
    Henry M. Cowles. The Scientific Method: An Evolution of Thinking from Darwin to Dewey. 384 pp., notes, index. Cambridge, Mass./London: Harvard University Press, 2020. $35 (cloth); ISBN 9780674976191. [REVIEW]Alisa Bokulich & Federica Bocchi - 2022 - Isis 113 (1):196-197.