32 found
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  1. Robustness Analysis as Explanatory Reasoning.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2018 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 69 (1):275-300.
    When scientists seek further confirmation of their results, they often attempt to duplicate the results using diverse means. To the extent that they are successful in doing so, their results are said to be robust. This paper investigates the logic of such "robustness analysis" [RA]. The most important and challenging question an account of RA can answer is what sense of evidential diversity is involved in RAs. I argue that prevailing formal explications of such diversity are unsatisfactory. I propose a (...)
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  2. The Logic of Explanatory Power.Jonah N. Schupbach & Jan Sprenger - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (1):105-127.
    This article introduces and defends a probabilistic measure of the explanatory power that a particular explanans has over its explanandum. To this end, we propose several intuitive, formal conditions of adequacy for an account of explanatory power. Then, we show that these conditions are uniquely satisfied by one particular probabilistic function. We proceed to strengthen the case for this measure of explanatory power by proving several theorems, all of which show that this measure neatly corresponds to our explanatory intuitions. Finally, (...)
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  3. Experimental Explication.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (3):672-710.
    Two recently popular metaphilosophical movements, formal philosophy and experimental philosophy, promote what seem to be conflicting methodologies. Nonetheless, I argue that the two can be mutually supportive. I propose an experimentally-informed variation on explication, a powerful formal philosophical tool introduced by Carnap. The resulting method, which I call “experimental explication,” provides the formalist with a means of responding to explication's gravest criticism. Moreover, this method introduces a philosophically salient, positive role for survey-style experiments while steering clear of several objections that (...)
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  4.  59
    Bayesianism and Scientific Reasoning.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2022 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    This book explores the Bayesian approach to the logic and epistemology of scientific reasoning. Section 1 introduces the probability calculus as an appealing generalization of classical logic for uncertain reasoning. Section 2 explores some of the vast terrain of Bayesian epistemology. Three epistemological postulates suggested by Thomas Bayes in his seminal work guide the exploration. This section discusses modern developments and defenses of these postulates as well as some important criticisms and complications that lie in wait for the Bayesian epistemologist. (...)
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  5. The role of explanatory considerations in updating.Igor Douven & Jonah N. Schupbach - 2015 - Cognition 142 (C):299-311.
    There is an ongoing controversy in philosophy about the connection between explanation and inference. According to Bayesians, explanatory considerations should be given weight in determining which inferences to make, if at all, only insofar as doing so is compatible with Strict Conditionalization. Explanationists, on the other hand, hold that explanatory considerations can be relevant to the question of how much confidence to invest in our hypotheses in ways which violate Strict Conditionalization. The controversy has focused on normative issues. This paper (...)
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  6. New Hope for Shogenji's Coherence Measure.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (1):125-142.
    I show that the two most devastating objections to Shogenji's formal account of coherence necessarily involve information sets of cardinality . Given this, I surmise that the problem with Shogenji's measure has more to do with his means of generalizing the measure than with the measure itself. I defend this claim by offering an alternative generalization of Shogenji's measure. This alternative retains the intuitive merits of the original measure while avoiding both of the relevant problems that befall it. In the (...)
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  7. Probabilistic Alternatives to Bayesianism: The Case of Explanationism.Igor Douven & Jonah N. Schupbach - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
    There has been a probabilistic turn in contemporary cognitive science. Far and away, most of the work in this vein is Bayesian, at least in name. Coinciding with this development, philosophers have increasingly promoted Bayesianism as the best normative account of how humans ought to reason. In this paper, we make a push for exploring the probabilistic terrain outside of Bayesianism. Non-Bayesian, but still probabilistic, theories provide plausible competitors both to descriptive and normative Bayesian accounts. We argue for this general (...)
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  8.  84
    Inference to the Best Explanation, Cleaned Up and Made Respectable.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2017 - In Kevin McCain & Ted Poston (eds.), Best Explanations: New Essays on Inference to the Best Explanation. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. pp. 39-61.
    Despite decades of focused philosophical investigation, Inference to the Best Explanation still lacks a precise articulation and compelling defense. The primary reason for this is that it is not at all clear what it means for a hypothesis to be the best available explanation of the evidence. This paper first seeks to rectify this problem by developing a formal explication of the explanatory virtue of power. A resulting account of IBE is then evaluated as a form of uncertain inference. Overall, (...)
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  9. Comparing Probabilistic Measures of Explanatory Power.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (5):813-829.
    Recently, in attempting to account for explanatory reasoning in probabilistic terms, Bayesians have proposed several measures of the degree to which a hypothesis explains a given set of facts. These candidate measures of "explanatory power" are shown to have interesting normative interpretations and consequences. What has not yet been investigated, however, is whether any of these measures are also descriptive of people’s actual explanatory judgments. Here, I present my own experimental work investigating this question. I argue that one measure in (...)
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  10. Robustness, Diversity of Evidence, and Probabilistic Independence.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2015 - In Uskali Mäki, Stéphanie Ruphy, Gerhard Schurz & Ioannis Votsis (eds.), Recent Developments in the Philosophy of Science. Cham: Springer. pp. 305-316.
    In robustness analysis, hypotheses are supported to the extent that a result proves robust, and a result is robust to the extent that we detect it in diverse ways. But what precise sense of diversity is at work here? In this paper, I show that the formal explications of evidential diversity most often appealed to in work on robustness – which all draw in one way or another on probabilistic independence – fail to shed light on the notion of diversity (...)
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  11. Is the Bad Lot Objection Just Misguided?Jonah N. Schupbach - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (1):55-64.
    In this paper, I argue that van Fraassen's "bad lot objection" against Inference to the Best Explanation [IBE] severely misses its mark. First, I show that the objection holds no special relevance to IBE; if the bad lot objection poses a serious problem for IBE, then it poses a serious problem for any inference form whatever. Second, I argue that, thankfully, it does not pose a serious threat to any inference form. Rather, the objection misguidedly blames a form of inference (...)
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  12. On a Bayesian analysis of the virtue of unification.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2005 - Philosophy of Science 72 (4):594-607.
    In three recent papers, Wayne Myrvold and Timothy McGrew have developed Bayesian accounts of the virtue of unification. In his account, McGrew demonstrates that, ceteris paribus, a hypothesis that unifies its evidence will have a higher posterior probability than a hypothesis that does not. Myrvold, on the other hand, offers a specific measure of unification that can be applied to individual hypotheses. He argues that one must account for this measure in order to calculate correctly the degree of confirmation that (...)
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  13.  57
    On the alleged impossibility of Bayesian Coherentism.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 141 (3):323-331.
    The success of Bovens and Hartmann’s recent “impossibility result” against Bayesian Coherentism relies upon the adoption of a specific set of ceteris paribus conditions. In this paper, I argue that these conditions are not clearly appropriate; certain proposed coherence measures motivate different such conditions and also call for the rejection of at least one of Bovens and Hartmann’s conditions. I show that there exist sets of intuitively plausible ceteris paribus conditions that allow one to sidestep the impossibility result. This shifts (...)
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  14.  83
    Troubles for Bayesian Formal Epistemology? A Response to Horgan.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2017 - Res Philosophica 95 (1):189-197.
    This paper responds to Terry Horgan’s recent critique of Bayesian formal epistemology. I argue that each of Horgan’s criticisms misses its mark when Bayesianism is viewed as putting forward an inductive logic of confidences. Along the way, I explore the nature, scope, and limits of a defensible brand of Bayesianism.
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  15.  62
    Hypothesis Competition beyond Mutual Exclusivity.Jonah N. Schupbach & David H. Glass - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (5):810-824.
    Competition between scientific hypotheses is not always a matter of mutual exclusivity. Consistent hypotheses can compete to varying degrees either directly or indirectly via a body of evidence. We motivate and defend a particular account of hypothesis competition by showing how it captures these features. Computer simulations of Bayesian inference are used to highlight the limitations of adopting mutual exclusivity as a simplifying assumption to model scientific reasoning, particularly due to the exclusion of hypotheses that may be true. We end (...)
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  16.  44
    Explanatory Power and Explanatory Justice.Jonah N. Schupbach & Jan Sprenger - manuscript
    Crupi and Tentori (2012) propose a condition of adequacy for any Bayesian measure of explanatory power, which they call Explanatory Justice. They criticize a measure recently defended by Schupbach and Sprenger(2011) for failing to satisfy this condition, and they offer a new explanatorily just measure of explanatory power. In this paper, we investigate Explanatory Justice’s merits as a condition of adequacy. We offer three arguments against this condition, thus supporitng the idea that a measure of explanatory power should rather be (...)
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  17. Is the conjunction fallacy tied to probabilistic confirmation?Jonah N. Schupbach - 2012 - Synthese 184 (1):13-27.
    Crupi et al. (2008) offer a confirmation-theoretic, Bayesian account of the conjunction fallacy—an error in reasoning that occurs when subjects judge that Pr( h 1 & h 2 | e ) > Pr( h 1 | e ). They introduce three formal conditions that are satisfied by classical conjunction fallacy cases, and they show that these same conditions imply that h 1 & h 2 is confirmed by e to a greater extent than is h 1 alone. Consequently, they suggest (...)
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  18.  45
    Studies in the Logic of Explanatory Power.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2011 - Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh
    Human reasoning often involves explanation. In everyday affairs, people reason to hypotheses based on the explanatory power these hypotheses afford; I might, for example, surmise that my toddler has been playing in my office because I judge that this hypothesis delivers a good explanation of the disarranged state of the books on my shelves. But such explanatory reasoning also has relevance far beyond the commonplace. Indeed, explanatory reasoning plays an important role in such varied fields as the sciences, philosophy, theology, (...)
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  19.  21
    Conjunctive explanation: Is the explanatory gain worth the cost?David H. Glass & Jonah N. Schupbach - 2023 - In Jonah N. Schupbach & David H. Glass (eds.), Conjunctive Explanations: The Nature, Epistemology, and Psychology of Explanatory Multiplicity. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 144-169.
    This chapter develops and defends a formal epistemology of conjunctive explanation by determining the conditions under which multiple distinct explanations are better than one. The general approach is to identify an appropriate measure of explanatory goodness that can then be applied to conjunctive explanations. If a conjunctive explanation is to be preferred it needs to have greater explanatory virtue (e.g., power or scope) with respect to the evidence, but this explanatory gain is insufficient on its own. Given a conjunctive explanation’s (...)
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  20.  42
    On the Logical Structure of Best Explanations.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2023 - Philosophy of Science 90 (5):1150-1160.
    Standard articulations of Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE) imply the uniqueness claim that exactly one explanation should be inferred in response to an explanandum. This claim has been challenged as being both too strong (sometimes agnosticism between candidate explanatory hypotheses seems the rational conclusion) and too weak (in cases where multiple hypotheses might sensibly be conjointly inferred). I propose a novel interpretation of IBE that retains the uniqueness claim while also allowing for agnostic and conjunctive conclusions. I then argue (...)
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  21. Experimental Philosophy Meets Formal Epistemology.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2016 - In Wesley Buckwalter & Justin Sytsma (eds.), Blackwell Companion to Experimental Philosophy. Malden, MA: Blackwell. pp. 535-544.
    Formal epistemology is just what it sounds like: epistemology done with formal tools. Coinciding with the general rise in popularity of experimental philosophy, formal epistemologists have begun to apply experimental methods in their own work. In this entry, I survey some of the work at the intersection of formal and experimental epistemology. I show that experimental methods have unique roles to play when epistemology is done formally, and I highlight some ways in which results from formal epistemology have been used (...)
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  22.  7
    Paley, William.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2021 - In Stewart Goetz & Charles Taliaferro (eds.), The Encyclopedia of Philosophy of Religion. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 1-4.
    This entry provides a brief summary of the works of William Paley (1743–1805) that are of most interest and relevance to contemporary philosophy of religion.
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  23.  25
    Experimental Philosophy Meets Formal Epistemology.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2016 - In Wesley Buckwalter & Justin Sytsma (eds.), Blackwell Companion to Experimental Philosophy. Malden, MA: Blackwell. pp. 535–544.
    Formal epistemology is just what it sounds like: epistemology done with formal tools. Coinciding with the general rise in popularity of experimental philosophy, formal epistemologists have begun to apply experimental methods in their own work. In this entry, I survey some of the work at the intersection of formal and experimental epistemology. I show that experimental methods have unique roles to play when epistemology is done formally, and I highlight some ways in which results from formal epistemology have been used (...)
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  24.  65
    Must the Scientific Realist be a Rationalist?Jonah N. Schupbach - 2007 - Synthese 154 (2):329-334.
    Marc Alspector-Kelly claims that Bas van Fraassen’s primary challenge to the scientific realist is for the realist to find a way to justify the use of some mode of inference that takes him from the world of observables to knowledge of the world of unobservables without thereby abandoning empiricism. It is argued that any effort to justify such an “inferential wand” must appeal either to synthetic a priori or synthetic a posteriori knowledge. This disjunction turns into a dilemma for the (...)
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  25.  15
    Conjunctive Explanations: The Nature, Epistemology, and Psychology of Explanatory Multiplicity.Jonah N. Schupbach & David H. Glass (eds.) - 2023 - New York, NY: Routledge.
    Philosophers and psychologists are increasingly investigating the conditions under which multiple explanations are better in conjunction than they are individually. This book brings together leading scholars to provide an interdisciplinary and unified discussion of such "conjunctive explanations." The book starts with an introductory chapter expounding the notion of conjunctive explanation and motivating a multifaceted approach to its study. The remaining chapters are divided into three parts. Part I includes chapters on "The Nature of Conjunctive Explanations." Each chapter illustrates distinct ways (...)
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  26. Paley’s Inductive Inference to Design.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2005 - Philosophia Christi 7 (2):491-502.
    In a recent article, Graham Oppy offers a lucid and intriguing examination of William Paley's design argument. Oppy sets two goals for his article. First, he sets out to challenge the "almost universal assumption" that Paley's argument is inductive by revealing it actually to be a deductive argument. Second, he attempts to expose Paley's argument as manifestly poor when interpreted in this way. I will argue that Oppy is unsuccessful in accomplishing his first goal, leaving his second goal quite irrelevant. (...)
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  27.  70
    The Possibility of Coherentism and the Stringency of Ceteris Paribus Conditions.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2015 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 30 (1):43.
    In, I put forward a “possibility result” for Bayesian Coherentism, showing that there exist plausible sets of ceteris paribus conditions that imply that coherence is truth-conducive. Against this result, Schubert argues that the specific ceteris paribus conditions I consider are “jointly inconsistent”. In this article, I prove to the contrary that these conditions can consistently be enforced while allowing degrees of coherence to vary. Next, I consider a related criticism, inspired by Olsson’s constraints on ceteris paribus conditions. This leads to (...)
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  28.  37
    Review of Thomas S. Kuhn, The Last Writings of Thomas S. Kuhn: Incommensurability in Science. [REVIEW]Jonah N. Schupbach - 2023 - Review of Metaphysics 77 (1):151-154.
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  29. Review of Michael Strevens, Depth: An Account of Scientific Explanation[REVIEW]Stephan Hartmann & Jonah N. Schupbach - 2010 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2010 (6).
  30.  18
    Longing to Know: The Philosophy of Knowledge for Ordinary People. [REVIEW]Jonah N. Schupbach - 2004 - Philosophia Christi 6 (1):155-158.
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  31.  21
    Review of Esther Meek, Longing to Know: The Philosophy of Knowledge for Ordinary People. [REVIEW]Jonah N. Schupbach - 2004 - Philosophia Christi 6 (1):155-158.
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  32. Review of Ernest Sosa, Reflective Knowledge: Apt Belief and Reflective Knowledge, Volume II. [REVIEW]Jonah N. Schupbach - 2010 - Review of Metaphysics 63 (3):722-724.