204 found
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  1. Ceteris Paribus Laws.Alexander Reutlinger, Gerhard Schurz, Andreas Hüttemann & Siegfried Jaag - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Laws of nature take center stage in philosophy of science. Laws are usually believed to stand in a tight conceptual relation to many important key concepts such as causation, explanation, confirmation, determinism, counterfactuals etc. Traditionally, philosophers of science have focused on physical laws, which were taken to be at least true, universal statements that support counterfactual claims. But, although this claim about laws might be true with respect to physics, laws in the special sciences (such as biology, psychology, economics etc.) (...)
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  2.  13
    Philosophy of Science: A Unified Approach.Gerhard Schurz - 2013 - Routledge.
    Philosophy of Science: A Unified Approach combines a general introduction to philosophy of science with an integrated survey of all its important subfields. As the book’s subtitle suggests, this excellent overview is guided methodologically by "a unified approach" to philosophy of science: behind the diversity of scientific fields one can recognize a methodological unity of the sciences. This unity is worked out in this book, revealing all the while important differences between subject areas. Structurally, this comprehensive book offers a two-part (...)
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  3. Patterns of Abduction.Gerhard Schurz - 2008 - Synthese 164 (2):201-234.
    This article describes abductions as special patterns of inference to the best explanation whose structure determines a particularly promising abductive conjecture and thus serves as an abductive search strategy. A classification of different patterns of abduction is provided which intends to be as complete as possible. An important distinction is that between selective abductions, which choose an optimal candidate from given multitude of possible explanations, and creative abductions, which introduce new theoretical models or concepts. While selective abduction has dominated the (...)
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  4. Causality as a Theoretical Concept: Explanatory Warrant and Empirical Content of the Theory of Causal Nets.Gerhard Schurz & Alexander Gebharter - 2016 - Synthese 193 (4):1073-1103.
    We start this paper by arguing that causality should, in analogy with force in Newtonian physics, be understood as a theoretical concept that is not explicated by a single definition, but by the axioms of a theory. Such an understanding of causality implicitly underlies the well-known theory of causal nets and has been explicitly promoted by Glymour. In this paper we investigate the explanatory warrant and empirical content of TCN. We sketch how the assumption of directed cause–effect relations can be (...)
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  5.  45
    Impossibility Results for Rational Belief.Gerhard Schurz - 2019 - Noûs 53 (1):134-159.
    There are two ways of representing rational belief: qualitatively as yes-or-no belief, and quantitatively as degrees of belief. Standard rationality conditions are: consistency and logical closure, for qualitative belief, satisfaction of the probability axioms, for quantitative belief, and a relationship between qualitative and quantitative beliefs in accordance with the Lockean thesis. In this paper, it is shown that these conditions are inconsistent with each of three further rationality conditions: fallibilism, open-mindedness, and invariance under independent conceptual expansions. Restrictions of the Lockean (...)
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  6. Outline of a Theory of Scientific Understanding.Gerhard Schurz & Karel Lambert - 1994 - Synthese 101 (1):65-120.
    The basic theory of scientific understanding presented in Sections 1–2 exploits three main ideas.First, that to understand a phenomenonP (for a given agent) is to be able to fitP into the cognitive background corpusC (of the agent).Second, that to fitP intoC is to connectP with parts ofC (via arguments in a very broad sense) such that the unification ofC increases.Third, that the cognitive changes involved in unification can be treated as sequences of shifts of phenomena inC. How the theory fits (...)
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  7.  53
    Relevant Deduction.Gerhard Schurz - 1991 - Erkenntnis 35 (1-3):391 - 437.
    This paper presents an outline of a new theory of relevant deduction which arose from the purpose of solving paradoxes in various fields of analytic philosophy. In distinction to relevance logics, this approach does not replace classical logic by a new one, but distinguishes between relevance and validity. It is argued that irrelevant arguments are, although formally valid, nonsensical and even harmful in practical applications. The basic idea is this: a valid deduction is relevant iff no subformula of the conclusion (...)
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  8.  31
    Cognitive Success: A Consequentialist Account of Rationality in Cognition.Gerhard Schurz & Ralph Hertwig - 2019 - Topics in Cognitive Science 11 (1):7-36.
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  9.  99
    Explanation as Unification.Gerhard Schurz - 1999 - Synthese 120 (1):95-114.
  10.  81
    Ceteris Paribus Laws: Classification and Deconstruction. [REVIEW]Gerhard Schurz - 2002 - Erkenntnis 57 (3):351Ð372.
    It has not been sufficiently considered in philosophical discussions of ceteris paribus (CP) laws that distinct kinds of CP-laws exist in science with rather different meanings. I distinguish between (1.) comparative CP-laws and (2.) exclusive CP-laws. There exist also mixed CP-laws, which contain a comparative and an exclusive CP-clause. Exclusive CP-laws may be either (2.1) definite, (2.2) indefinite or (2.3) normic. While CP-laws of kind (2.1) and (2.2) exhibit deductivistic behaviour, CP-laws of kind (2.3) require a probabilistic or non-monotonic reconstruction. (...)
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  11.  94
    Probability, Approximate Truth, and Truthlikeness: More Ways Out of the Preface Paradox.Gustavo Cevolani & Gerhard Schurz - 2017 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 95 (2):209-225.
    The so-called Preface Paradox seems to show that one can rationally believe two logically incompatible propositions. We address this puzzle, relying on the notions of truthlikeness and approximate truth as studied within the post-Popperian research programme on verisimilitude. In particular, we show that adequately combining probability, approximate truth, and truthlikeness leads to an explanation of how rational belief is possible in the face of the Preface Paradox. We argue that our account is superior to other solutions of the paradox, including (...)
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  12. Zwart and Franssen’s Impossibility Theorem Holds for Possible-World-Accounts but Not for Consequence-Accounts to Verisimilitude.Gerhard Schurz & Paul Weingartner - 2010 - Synthese 172 (3):415 - 436.
    Zwart and Franssen’s impossibility theorem reveals a conflict between the possible-world-based content-definition and the possible-world-based likeness-definition of verisimilitude. In Sect. 2 we show that the possible-world-based content-definition violates four basic intuitions of Popper’s consequence-based content-account to verisimilitude, and therefore cannot be said to be in the spirit of Popper’s account, although this is the opinion of some prominent authors. In Sect. 3 we argue that in consequence-accounts , content-aspects and likeness-aspects of verisimilitude are not in conflict with each other, but (...)
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  13. What is 'Normal'? An Evolution-Theoretic Foundation for Normic Laws and Their Relation to Statistical Normality.Gerhard Schurz - 2001 - Philosophy of Science 68 (4):476-497.
    Normic laws have the form "if A, then normally B." They are omnipresent in everyday life and non-physical 'life' sciences such as biology, psychology, social sciences, and humanities. They differ significantly from ceteris-paribus laws in physics. While several authors have doubted that normic laws are genuine laws at all, others have argued that normic laws express a certain kind of prototypical normality which is independent of statistical majority. This paper presents a foundation for normic laws which is based on generalized (...)
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  14.  72
    The Meta‐Inductivist’s Winning Strategy in the Prediction Game: A New Approach to Hume’s Problem.Gerhard Schurz - 2008 - Philosophy of Science 75 (3):278-305.
    This article suggests a ‘best alternative' justification of induction (in the sense of Reichenbach) which is based on meta-induction . The meta-inductivist applies the principle of induction to all competing prediction methods which are accessible to her. It is demonstrated, and illustrated by computer simulations, that there exist meta-inductivistic prediction strategies whose success is approximately optimal among all accessible prediction methods in arbitrary possible worlds, and which dominate the success of every noninductive prediction strategy. The proposed justification of meta-induction is (...)
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  15.  91
    When Empirical Success Implies Theoretical Reference: A Structural Correspondence Theorem.Gerhard Schurz - 2009 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (1):101-133.
    Starting from a brief recapitulation of the contemporary debate on scientific realism, this paper argues for the following thesis : Assume a theory T has been empirically successful in a domain of application A, but was superseded later on by a superior theory T * , which was likewise successful in A but has an arbitrarily different theoretical superstructure. Then under natural conditions T contains certain theoretical expressions, which yielded T's empirical success, such that these T-expressions correspond (in A) to (...)
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  16.  19
    Zwart and Franssen’s Impossibility Theorem Holds for Possible-World-Accounts but Not for Consequence-Accounts to Verisimilitude.Gerhard Schurz & Paul Weingartner - 2010 - Synthese 172 (3):415-436.
    Zwart and Franssen’s impossibility theorem reveals a conflict between the possible-world-based content-definition and the possible-world-based likeness-definition of verisimilitude. In Sect. 2 we show that the possible-world-based content-definition violates four basic intuitions of Popper’s consequence-based content-account to verisimilitude, and therefore cannot be said to be in the spirit of Popper’s account, although this is the opinion of some prominent authors. In Sect. 3 we argue that in consequence-accounts, content-aspects and likeness-aspects of verisimilitude are not in conflict with each other, but in (...)
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  17.  94
    Verisimilitude and Belief Revision. With a Focus on the Relevant Element Account.Gerhard Schurz - 2011 - Erkenntnis 75 (2):203-221.
    The expansion or revision of false theories by true evidence does not always increase their verisimilitude. After a comparison of different notions of verisimilitude the relation between verisimilitude and belief expansion or revision is investigated within the framework of the relevant element account. We are able to find certain interesting conditions under which both the expansion and the revision of theories by true evidence is guaranteed to increase their verisimilitude.
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  18. The is-Ought Problem: An Investigation in Philosophical Logic.Gerhard Schurz - 1997 - Dordrecht, Netherland: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
    Schurz draws on modern alethic- deontic predicate logic to address the venerable yet enduring problem of whether what ought to be can be derived from what is. After two extensive introductory chapters supplying the background in philosophy and logic to readers unfamiliar with it, he examines such dimensions as the logical explication of Hume's thesis, the special Hume thesis, weakened versions of it, generalizations, some applications to ethical arguments, problems of identity and existence, whether there are analytic bridge principles, and (...)
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  19.  52
    The Revenge of Ecological Rationality: Strategy-Selection by Meta-Induction Within Changing Environments.Gerhard Schurz & Paul D. Thorn - 2016 - Minds and Machines 26 (1-2):31-59.
    According to the paradigm of adaptive rationality, successful inference and prediction methods tend to be local and frugal. As a complement to work within this paradigm, we investigate the problem of selecting an optimal combination of prediction methods from a given toolbox of such local methods, in the context of changing environments. These selection methods are called meta-inductive strategies, if they are based on the success-records of the toolbox-methods. No absolutely optimal MI strategy exists—a fact that we call the “revenge (...)
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  20. A Utility Based Evaluation of Logico-Probabilistic Systems.Paul D. Thorn & Gerhard Schurz - 2014 - Studia Logica 102 (4):867-890.
    Systems of logico-probabilistic (LP) reasoning characterize inference from conditional assertions interpreted as expressing high conditional probabilities. In the present article, we investigate four prominent LP systems (namely, systems O, P, Z, and QC) by means of computer simulations. The results reported here extend our previous work in this area, and evaluate the four systems in terms of the expected utility of the dispositions to act that derive from the conclusions that the systems license. In addition to conforming to the dominant (...)
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  21.  45
    Bayesian Pseudo-Confirmation, Use-Novelty, and Genuine Confirmation.Gerhard Schurz - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 45:87-96.
    According to the comparative Bayesian concept of confirmation, rationalized versions of creationism come out as empirically confirmed. From a scientific viewpoint, however, they are pseudo-explanations because with their help all kinds of experiences are explainable in an ex-post fashion, by way of ad-hoc fitting of an empirically empty theoretical framework to the given evidence. An alternative concept of confirmation that attempts to capture this intuition is the use novelty criterion of confirmation. Serious objections have been raised against this criterion. In (...)
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  22.  59
    Abduction as a Method of Inductive Metaphysics.Gerhard Schurz - 2020 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 98 (1):50-74.
    Like scientific theories, metaphysical theories can and should be justified by the inference of creative abduction. Two rationality conditions are proposed that distinguish scientific from speculative abductions: achievement of unification and independent testability. Particularly important in science is common cause abduction. The justification of metaphysical realism is structurally similar to scientific abductions: external objects are justified as common causes of perceptual experiences. While the reliability of common cause abduction is entailed by a principle of causality, the latter principle has an (...)
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  23.  32
    No Free Lunch Theorem, Inductive Skepticism, and the Optimality of Meta-Induction.Gerhard Schurz - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (5):825-839.
    The no free lunch theorem is a radicalized version of Hume’s induction skepticism. It asserts that relative to a uniform probability distribution over all possible worlds, all computable prediction algorithms—whether ‘clever’ inductive or ‘stupid’ guessing methods —have the same expected predictive success. This theorem seems to be in conflict with results about meta-induction. According to these results, certain meta-inductive prediction strategies may dominate other methods in their predictive success. In this article this conflict is analyzed and dissolved, by means of (...)
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  24.  29
    Meaning-Preserving Translations of Non-classical Logics into Classical Logic: Between Pluralism and Monism.Gerhard Schurz - 2022 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 51 (1):27-55.
    In order to prove the validity of logical rules, one has to assume these rules in the metalogic. However, rule-circular ‘justifications’ are demonstrably without epistemic value. Is a non-circular justification of a logical system possible? This question attains particular importance in view of lasting controversies about classical versus non-classical logics. In this paper the question is answered positively, based on meaning-preserving translations between logical systems. It is demonstrated that major systems of non-classical logic, including multi-valued, paraconsistent, intuitionistic and quantum logics, (...)
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  25. Reward Versus Risk in Uncertain Inference: Theorems and Simulations.Gerhard Schurz & Paul D. Thorn - 2012 - Review of Symbolic Logic 5 (4):574-612.
    Systems of logico-probabilistic reasoning characterize inference from conditional assertions that express high conditional probabilities. In this paper we investigate four prominent LP systems, the systems _O, P_, _Z_, and _QC_. These systems differ in the number of inferences they licence _. LP systems that license more inferences enjoy the possible reward of deriving more true and informative conclusions, but with this possible reward comes the risk of drawing more false or uninformative conclusions. In the first part of the paper, we (...)
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  26.  58
    Non-Monotonic Reasoning From an Evolution-Theoretic Perspective: Ontic, Logical and Cognitive Foundations.Gerhard Schurz - 2005 - Synthese 146 (1-2):37-51.
    In the first part I argue that normic laws are the phenomenological laws of evolutionary systems. If this is true, then intuitive human reasoning should be fit in reasoning from normic laws. In the second part I show that system P is a tool for reasoning with normic laws which satisfies two important evolutionary standards: it is probabilistically reliable, and it has rules of low complexity. In the third part I finally report results of an experimental study which demonstrate that (...)
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  27. Structural Correspondence, Indirect Reference, and Partial Truth: Phlogiston Theory and Newtonian Mechanics.Gerhard Schurz - 2011 - Synthese 180 (2):103-120.
    This paper elaborates on the following correspondence theorem (which has been defended and formally proved elsewhere): if theory T has been empirically successful in a domain of applications A, but was superseded later on by a different theory T* which was likewise successful in A, then under natural conditions T contains theoretical expressions which were responsible for T’s success and correspond (in A) to certain theoretical expressions of T*. I illustrate this theorem at hand of the phlogiston versus oxygen theories (...)
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  28.  7
    The Role of Reasoning and Pragmatics in the Modifier Effect.Corina Strößner & Gerhard Schurz - 2020 - Cognitive Science 44 (2).
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  29. The New Tweety Puzzle: Arguments Against Monistic Bayesian Approaches in Epistemology and Cognitive Science.Matthias Unterhuber & Gerhard Schurz - 2013 - Synthese 190 (8):1407-1435.
    In this paper we discuss the new Tweety puzzle. The original Tweety puzzle was addressed by approaches in non-monotonic logic, which aim to adequately represent the Tweety case, namely that Tweety is a penguin and, thus, an exceptional bird, which cannot fly, although in general birds can fly. The new Tweety puzzle is intended as a challenge for probabilistic theories of epistemic states. In the first part of the paper we argue against monistic Bayesians, who assume that epistemic states can (...)
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  30.  26
    Optimality Justifications: New Foundations for Foundation-Oriented Epistemology.Gerhard Schurz - 2018 - Synthese 195 (9):3877-3897.
    In this paper a new conception of foundation-oriented epistemology is developed. The major challenge for foundation-oriented justifications consists in the problem of stopping the justificational regress without taking recourse to dogmatic assumptions or circular reasoning. Two alternative accounts that attempt to circumvent this problem, coherentism and externalism, are critically discussed and rejected as unsatisfactory. It is argued that optimality arguments are a new type of foundation-oriented justification that can stop the justificational regress. This is demonstrated on the basis of a (...)
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  31. Pietroski and Rey on Ceteris Paribus Laws.Gerhard Schurz - 2001 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (2):359Ð370.
    , Pietroski and Rey ([1995]) suggested a reconstruction of ceteris paribus (CP)-laws, which — as they claim — saves CP-laws from vacuity. This discussion note is intended to show that, although Pietroski and Rey's reconstruction is an improvement in comparison to previous suggestions, it cannot avoid the result that CP-laws are almost vacuous. It is proved that if Cx is an arbitrary (nomological) event-type which has independently identifiable deterministic causes, then for every other (nomological) event-type Ax which is not strictly (...)
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  32. Completeness and Correspondence in Chellas–Segerberg Semantics.Matthias Unterhuber & Gerhard Schurz - 2014 - Studia Logica 102 (4):891-911.
    We investigate a lattice of conditional logics described by a Kripke type semantics, which was suggested by Chellas and Segerberg – Chellas–Segerberg (CS) semantics – plus 30 further principles. We (i) present a non-trivial frame-based completeness result, (ii) a translation procedure which gives one corresponding trivial frame conditions for arbitrary formula schemata, and (iii) non-trivial frame conditions in CS semantics which correspond to the 30 principles.
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  33.  42
    Ceteris Paribus and Ceteris Rectis Laws: Content and Causal Role.Gerhard Schurz - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (S10):1801-1817.
    This paper has three goals. The first goal is to work out the difference between literal ceteris paribus laws in the sense of “all others being equal” and ceteris rectis “laws” in the sense of “all others being right”. While cp laws involve a universal quantification, cr generalizations involve an existential quantification over the values of the remainder variables Z. As a result, the two differ crucially in their confirmability and lawlikeness. The second goal is to provide a classification of (...)
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  34. Qualitative Probabilistic Inference Under Varied Entropy Levels.Paul D. Thorn & Gerhard Schurz - 2016 - Journal of Applied Logic 19 (2):87-101.
    In previous work, we studied four well known systems of qualitative probabilistic inference, and presented data from computer simulations in an attempt to illustrate the performance of the systems. These simulations evaluated the four systems in terms of their tendency to license inference to accurate and informative conclusions, given incomplete information about a randomly selected probability distribution. In our earlier work, the procedure used in generating the unknown probability distribution (representing the true stochastic state of the world) tended to yield (...)
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  35. Paradoxes Solved by Simple Relevance Criteria.Paul Weingartner & Gerhard Schurz - 1986 - Logique Et Analyse 29 (113):3-40.
     
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  36.  6
    Analyzing Theories in the Frame Model.Stephan Kornmesser & Gerhard Schurz - 2020 - Erkenntnis 85 (6):1313-1346.
    The frame model was developed in cognitive psychology and imported into the philosophy of science in order to provide representations of scientific concepts and conceptual taxonomies. The aim of this article is to show that beside the representation of scientific concepts the frame model is an efficient instrument to represent and analyze scientific theories. That is, we aim to establish the frame model as a representation tool for the structure of theories within the philosophy of science. For this, we will (...)
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  37.  17
    Interactive Causes: Revising the Markov Condition.Gerhard Schurz - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (3):456-479.
    This article suggests a revision of the theory of causal nets. In section 1 we introduce an axiomatization of TCN based on a realistic understanding. It is shown that the causal Markov condition entails three independent principles. In section 2 we analyze indeterministic decay as the major counterexample to one of these principles: screening off by common causes. We call SCC-violating common causes interactive causes. In section 3 we develop a revised version of TCN, called TCN*, which accounts for interactive (...)
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  38.  87
    Causality and Unification: How Causality Unifies Statistical Regularities.Gerhard Schurz - 2015 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 30 (1):73-95.
    Two key ideas of scientific explanation−explanation as causal information and explanation as unification-have frequently been set into mutual opposition. This paper proposes a “dialectical solution” to this conflict, by arguing that causal explanations are preferable to non-causal ones, because they lead to a higherdegree of unification at the level of explaining statistical regularities. The core axioms of the theory of causal nets are justified because they offer the best if not the only unifying explanation of two statistical phenomena: screening off (...)
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  39.  75
    The No Free Lunch Theorem: Bad News for (White's Account of) the Problem of Induction.Gerhard Schurz - 2021 - Episteme 18 (1):31-45.
    White proposes an a priori justification of the reliability of inductive prediction methods based on his thesis of induction-friendliness. It asserts that there are by far more induction-friendly event sequences than induction-unfriendly event sequences. In this paper I contrast White's thesis with the famous no free lunch theorem. I explain two versions of this theorem, the strong NFL theorem applying to binary and the weak NFL theorem applying to real-valued predictions. I show that both versions refute the thesis of induction-friendliness. (...)
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  40.  76
    Meta-Induction and Social Epistemology: Computer Simulations of Prediction Games.Gerhard Schurz - 2009 - Episteme 6 (2):200-220.
    The justification of induction is of central significance for cross-cultural social epistemology. Different ‘epistemological cultures’ do not only differ in their beliefs, but also in their belief-forming methods and evaluation standards. For an objective comparison of different methods and standards, one needs (meta-)induction over past successes. A notorious obstacle to the problem of justifying induction lies in the fact that the success of object-inductive prediction methods (i.e., methods applied at the level of events) can neither be shown to be universally (...)
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  41.  46
    A Modeling Approach for Mechanisms Featuring Causal Cycles.Alexander Gebharter & Gerhard Schurz - 2016 - Philosophy of Science 83 (5):934-945.
    Mechanisms play an important role in many sciences when it comes to questions concerning explanation, prediction, and control. Answering such questions in a quantitative way requires a formal represention of mechanisms. Gebharter (2014) suggests to represent mechanisms by means of one or more causal arrows of an acyclic causal net. In this paper we show how this approach can be extended in such a way that it can also be fruitfully applied to mechanisms featuring causal feedback.
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  42.  41
    Erratum To: Causality as a Theoretical Concept: Explanatory Warrant and Empirical Content of the Theory of Causal Nets.Gerhard Schurz & Alexander Gebharter - 2016 - Synthese 193 (4):1105-1106.
  43.  66
    How Occam's Razor Provides a Neat Definition of Direct Causation.Alexander Gebharter & Gerhard Schurz - 2014 - In J. M. Mooij, D. Janzing, J. Peters, T. Claassen & A. Hyttinen (eds.), Proceedings of the UAI Workshop Causal Inference: Learning and Prediction. CEUR-WS. pp. 1-10.
    In this paper we show that the application of Occam’s razor to the theory of causal Bayes nets gives us a neat definition of direct causation. In particular we show that Occam’s razor implies Woodward’s (2003) definition of direct causation, provided suitable intervention variables exist and the causal Markov condition (CMC) is satisfied. We also show how Occam’s razor can account for direct causal relationships Woodward style when only stochastic intervention variables are available.
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  44. Meta-Induction and the Wisdom of Crowds.Paul D. Thorn & Gerhard Schurz - 2012 - Analyse & Kritik 34 (2):339-366.
    Meta-induction, in its various forms, is an imitative prediction method, where the prediction methods and the predictions of other agents are imitated to the extent that those methods or agents have proven successful in the past. In past work, Schurz demonstrated the optimality of meta-induction as a method for predicting unknown events and quantities. However, much recent discussion, along with formal and empirical work, on the Wisdom of Crowds has extolled the virtue of diverse and independent judgment as essential to (...)
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  45.  31
    Common Cause Abduction: The Formation of Theoretical Concepts and Models in Science.Gerhard Schurz - 2016 - Logic Journal of the IGPL 24 (4).
  46.  26
    Ostensive Learnability as a Test Criterion for Theory-Neutral Observation Concepts.Gerhard Schurz - 2015 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 46 (1):139-153.
    In the first part of my paper I discuss eight arguments in favour of the theory-dependence of observation: realistic content, guidance function of theories, perception as cognitive construction, expectation-dependence of perception, theory-dependence of scientific data, continuity between observational and theoretical concepts, language-dependence, and meaning holism. I argue that although these arguments make correct points, they do not exclude the existence of observations that are weakly theory-neutral in the sense that they don’t depend on acquired background knowledge. In the second part (...)
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  47.  15
    How Category Selection Impacts Inference Reliability: Inheritance Inference From an Ecological Perspective.Paul D. Thorn & Gerhard Schurz - 2021 - Cognitive Science 45 (4):e12971.
    This article presents results from a simulation‐based study of inheritance inference, that is, inference from the typicality of a property among a “base” class to its typicality among a subclass of the class. The study aims to ascertain which kinds of inheritance inferences are reliable, with attention to the dependence of their reliability upon the type of environment in which inferences are made. For example, the study addresses whether inheritance inference is reliable in the case of “exceptional subclasses” (i.e., subclasses (...)
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  48.  36
    A Frame-Theoretic Analysis of Two Rival Conceptions of Heat.Ioannis Votsis & Gerhard Schurz - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 43 (1):105-114.
  49. Scientific Explanation: A Critical Survey.Gerhard Schurz - 1995 - Foundations of Science 1 (3):429-465.
    This paper describes the development of theories of scientific explanation since Hempel's earliest models in the 1940ies. It focuses on deductive and probabilistic whyexplanations and their main problems: lawlikeness, explanation-prediction asymmetries, causality, deductive and probabilistic relevance, maximal specifity and homogenity, the height of the probability value. For all of these topic the paper explains the most important approaches as well as their criticism, including the author's own accounts. Three main theses of this paper are: (1) Both deductive and probabilistic explanations (...)
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  50.  24
    Causality and Unification: How Causality Unifies Statistical Regularities.Gerhard Schurz - 2015 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 30 (1):73.
    Two key ideas of scientific explanation - explanations as causal information and explanation as unification - have frequently been set into mutual opposition. This paper proposes a "dialectical solution" to this conflict, by arguing that causal explanations are preferable to non-causal explanations because they lead to a higher degree of unification at the level of the explanation of statistical regularities. The core axioms of the theory of causal nets are justified because they give the best if not the only unifying (...)
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