The book then discusses another group of issues ("whether it is, what it is, how and why it is"), which determined the argumentation, the axiomatic ordering of the sciences, and concludes with a demonstration on the basis of concrete ...
We propose to model preference change as the change of an agent’s preference state in response to the agent accepting a preference affect. The preference state of an agent is ruled by various inferential commitments. Accepting a preference affect will likely bring the preference state into inconsistency. The model shows how the preference state needs to be adjusted to restore consistency. In particular, it shows which path restoration will take, conditional on the previous preference state and the available dynamic information, (...) and it determines how the ensuing preference state will look like. (shrink)
Standardly, mental properties like beliefs, desires, fears, etc. are analysed as relations between the agent, to whom the predicate is ascribed, and a proposition, which is the intentional content of this property. According to this relational analysis, having a thought implies having its content present to the mind. This has wide-ranging philosophical implications, e.g. for the possibility of children and animals having intentional mental properties, or for the problem of knowing one’s own thoughts. Further, according to the relational analysis, the (...) causal efficacy of mental properties must be in virtue of their content. This implies that folk-psychological explanations acquire a special status, for they employ mental properties as the explanans of behaviour. Mental properties can be conceived of as causally efficacious, and hence like standard scientific explanans, only if a satisfactory account is provided how they are causally efficacious in virtue of their semantic content. A successful account of this sort, I submit, does not exist as of yet; hence it seems, on the relational account, that folk psychological explanations are non-scientific, if they are explanations at all. (shrink)
Cancer-related electronic support groups (ESGs) may be regarded as a complement to face-to-face groups when the latter are available, and as an alternative when they are not. Advantages over face-to-face groups include an absence of barriers imposed by geographic location, opportunities for anonymity that permit sensitive issues to be discussed, and opportunities to find peers online. ESGs can be especially valuable as navigation aids for those trying to find a way through the healthcare system and as a guide to the (...) cancer journey. Outcome indicators that could be used to evaluate the quality of ESGs as navigation aids need to be developed and tested. Conceptual models for the navigator role, such as the Facilitating Navigator Model, are appropriate for ESGs designed specifically for research purposes. A Shared or Tacit Model may be more appropriate for unmoderated ESGs. Both conceptual models raise issues in Internet research ethics that need to be address. (shrink)
The purpose of the work was to produce a framework to guide the development of meritorious clinical trial proposals. The framework consists of essential features of rigourous methodology, ethical acceptability, and a component referred to as "community context". These three domains were woven together in a checklist format under the headings of general, scientific and ethical considerations. Since texts concerning clinical trial methodology do not integrate ethics criteria and ethics guidelines do not provide detailed scientific criteria in obvious and practical (...) ways, we outline a more contemporary and comprehensive set of guidelines. (shrink)
Three of Zygmunt Bauman’s recent books are assessed to present insights into the recent development of his thought and the challenges it poses to the social sciences, humanities and the wider public. By reading Bauman’s recent work through the influence he takes from Georg Simmel, the former’s disparate recent work is understood as an attempt at the cultivation of critical and ethical engagement through the externalization and objectification of his own subjective culture. The more radical elements of Bauman’s work are (...) emphasized in his attempts to stimulate a counter-culture through encouraging critical analysis of society. It is proposed that he achieves this through ‘polylogic’ discourse and engagement with the public. Sociology is presented as a tool of freedom through ‘defamiliarizing the familiar’ and Bauman’s most powerful tool in this is the demonstration of his particular critical view of the world. The broad-ranging engagement with diverse topics in his recent books enables him to place this critical perspective, rather than a particular topic or issue, at the centre of his work. The metaphorical and other literary devices used by Bauman to stimulate critique and in particular to spur on the radical potential of youth are highlighted as some of his most powerful contributions. (shrink)
Drawing on critical analyses of the internet inspired by Gilles Deleuze and the Marxist autonomia movement, this paper suggests a way of understanding the impact of the internet and digital culture on identity and social forms through a consideration of the relationship between controls exercised through the internet, new subjectivities constituted through its use and new labour practices enabled by it. Following Castells, we can see that the distinction between user, consumer and producer is becoming blurred and free labour is (...) being provided by users to corporations. The relationship between digital technologies and sense of community, through their relationship to the future, is considered for its dangers and potentials. It is proposed that the internet may be a useful tool for highlighting and enabling social connections if certain dangers can be traversed. Notably, current remedies for the lack of trust on the internet are questioned with an alternative, drawing on Zygmunt Bauman and Georg Simmel, proposed which is built on community through a vision of a ‘shared network’. (shrink)
We introduce a new metric for interdisciplinarity, based on co-author publication history. A published article that has co-authors with quite different publication histories can be deemed relatively “interdisciplinary,” in that the article reflects a convergence of previous research in distinct sets of publication outlets. In recent work, we have shown that this interdisciplinarity metric can predict citations. Here, we show that the journal Cognitive Science tends to contain collaborations that are relatively high on this interdisciplinarity metric, at about the 80th (...) percentile of all journals across both social and natural sciences. Following on Goldstone and Leydesdorff, we describe how scientometric tools provide a valuable means of assessing the role of cognitive science in broader scientific work, and also as a tool to investigate teamwork and distributed cognition. We describe how data-driven metrics of this kind may facilitate this exploration without relying upon rapidly changing discipline and topic keywords associated with publications. (shrink)
Governance theories impact how corporations are run, which in turn impacts societal well-being. This dynamic is commonly accepted, as evidenced by the flood of articles exploring the links between corporate governance and corporate social responsibility. This article supplements current corporate governance theories with Catholic social thought to address burgeoning societal issues such as the increasing trust gap, income inequality, and an overemphasis on financial compensation as the primary way to motivate senior managers. The authors propose a shift away from agency (...) theory and stakeholder theory, both of which, with their limited depictions of the motivations of managers, have contributed to excessive executive compensation. Instead, the authors develop an alternative—justice stewardship theory—which integrates organizational justice theory, the principles of stewardship theory, and the insights of 150 years of CST. (shrink)
Special issue. With contributions by Anouk Barberouse, Sarah Francescelli and Cyrille Imbert, Robert Batterman, Roman Frigg and Julian Reiss, Axel Gelfert, Till Grüne-Yanoff, Paul Humphreys, James Mattingly and Walter Warwick, Matthew Parker, Wendy Parker, Dirk Schlimm, and Eric Winsberg.
It is argued that one can learn from minimal economic models. Minimal models are models that are not similar to the real world, do not resemble some of its features, and do not adhere to accepted regularities. One learns from a model if constructing and analysing the model affects one’s confidence in hypotheses about the world. Economic models, I argue, are often assessed for their credibility. If a model is judged credible, it is considered to be a relevant possibility. Considering (...) such relevant possibilities may affect one’s confidence in necessity or impossibility hypotheses. Thus, one can learn from minimal economic models. (shrink)
Many scientific models lack an established representation relation to actual targets and instead refer to merely possible processes, background conditions, and results. This article shows how such models can be appraised. On the basis of the discussion of how-possibly explanations, five types of learning opportunities are distinguished. For each of these types, an example—from economics, biology, psychology, and sociology—is discussed. Contexts and purposes are identified in which the use of a model offers a genuine opportunity to learn. These learning opportunities (...) offer novel justifications for modeling practices that fall between the cracks of standard representationalist appraisals of models. (shrink)
If citizens’ behavior threatens to harm others or seems not to be in their own interest, it is not uncommon for governments to attempt to change that behavior. Governmental policy makers can apply established tools from the governmental toolbox to this end. Alternatively, they can employ new tools that capitalize on the wealth of knowledge about human behavior and behavior change that has been accumulated in the behavioral sciences. Two contrasting approaches to behavior change are nudge policies and boost policies. (...) These policies rest on fundamentally different research programs on bounded rationality, namely, the heuristics and biases program and the simple heuristics program, respectively. This article examines the policy–theory coherence of each approach. To this end, it identifies the necessary assumptions underlying each policy and analyzes to what extent these assumptions are implied by the theoretical commitments of the respective research program. Two key results of this analysis are that the two policy approaches rest on diverging assumptions and that both suffer from disconnects with the respective theoretical program, but to different degrees: Nudging appears to be more adversely affected than boosting does. The article concludes with a discussion of the limits of the chosen evaluative dimension, policy–theory coherence, and reviews some other benchmarks on which policy programs can be assessed. (shrink)
ABSTRACTIn his recent book, Rodrik [. Economics rules. Why economics works, when it fails, and how to tell the difference. Oxford University Press] proposes an account of model pluralism according to which multiple models of the same target are acceptable as long as one model is more useful for one purpose and another is more useful for another purpose. How, then, is the right model for the purpose selected? Rodrik roughly outlines a selection procedure, which we formalize to enhance understanding (...) of his account of model pluralism and to advance the critical discussion. (shrink)
Some scholars see interdisciplinarity as a special case of a broader unificationist program. They accept the unification of the sciences as a regulative ideal, and derive from this the normative justification of interdisciplinary research practices. The crucial link for this position is the notion of integration: integration increases the cohesion of concepts and practices, and more specifically of explanations, ontologies, methods and data. Interdisciplinary success then consists in the integration of fields or disciplines, and this constitutes success in the sense (...) that unification is epistemically desirable. In contrast to this account, I defend the thesis that successful interdisciplinary interaction does not necessarily imply the integration of these disciplines. I show this at the hand of two cases. In both the case of evolutionary game theory and the case of hyperbolic discounting, genuine interdisciplinary exchange took place. From both exchanges, the respective economic fields emerged substantially altered – it wasn’t just a juxtaposition of disciplines in which disciplinary identities remained unchanged. Yet in neither case did the disciplines integrate. Rather, they developed their own concepts and methods, their own explanations, own ontologies, and their own views of what proper data standards were. Furthermore, the fields that emerged from these exchanges were very successful, if measured at the hand of properties like explanatory success, increase of control, bibliometrics and grant yields. Thus, I argue, there are cases of interdisciplinary success without integration. (shrink)
The development of evolutionary game theory is closely linked with two interdisciplinary exchanges: the import of game theory into biology, and the import of biologists’ version of game theory into economics. This paper traces the history of these two import episodes. In each case the investigation covers what exactly was imported, what the motives for the import were, how the imported elements were put to use, and how they related to existing practices in the respective disciplines. Two conclusions emerged from (...) this study. First, concepts derived from the unity of science discussion or the unification accounts of explanation are too strong and too narrow to be useful for analysing these interdisciplinary exchanges. Secondly, biology and economics—at least in relation to EGT—show significant differences in modelling practices: biologists seek to link EGT models to concrete empirical situations, whereas economists pursue conceptual exploration and possible explanation.Keywords: Models; Evolutionary game theory; Interdisciplinarity; Unification; Unity of science; Theory import; Biology; Economics. (shrink)
This response to Reiss ?explanatory paradox? argues that some economic models might be true, and that many economic models are not intended for providing how-actually explanations, but rather how-possibly explanations. Therefore, two assumptions of Reiss? paradox are not true, and the paradox disappears.
Philosophers of science studying scientific practice often consider it a methodological requirement that their conceptualization of "model" closely connects with the understanding and use of models by practicing scientists. Occasionally, this connection has been explicitly made (Hutten 1954, Suppes 1961, Morgan and Morrison 1999, Bailer-Jones 2002, Lehtinen and Kuorikoski 2007, Kuorikoski 2007, Morgan 2012a). These studies have been dominated by a focus on the—relatively similar forms of—mathematical models in physics and economics. Yet it has become increasingly evident that the way (...) models are conceptualized is very different in some other sciences, where philosophers' accounts of models' characteristics and .. (shrink)
Modelling cannot be characterized as isolating, nor models as isolations. This article presents three arguments to that effect, against Uskali Mäki's account of models. First, while isolation proceeds through a process of manipulation and control, modelling typically does not proceed through such a process. Rather, modellers postulate assumptions, without seeking to justify them by reference to a process of isolation. Second, while isolation identifies an isolation base?a concrete environment it seeks to control and manipulate?modelling typically does not identify such a (...) base. Rather, modellers construct their models without reference to concrete environments, and only later seek to connect their models to concrete situations of the real world. Third, Mäki argues that isolation employs idealization to control for disturbing factors, but does not affect the factors or mechanisms that are supposed to be isolated. However, models typically make idealizing assumptions about the factors and mechanisms that are the focus of investigation. Thus, even the product of modelling often cannot be characterized as isolation. (shrink)
Game?theoretic models consist of a formal game structure and an informal model narrative or story. When game theory is employed to model economic situations, the stories play a central role in interpreting, constructing and solving game structures. We analyse the architecture of game theory and distinguish between game models and the theory proper. We present the different functions of the model narrative in the application of game models to economic situations. In particular, we show how model narratives support the choice (...) of solution concepts defined and provided by the theory proper. We further argue that the narrative's role in interpretation, construction and solution makes it a necessary part of a game model that is intended to be a model of an economic situation. We conclude that game theory is not a universal theory of rationality, but only offers tools to model specific situations at varying degrees and kinds of rationality. (shrink)
:In this paper, we analyse the difference between two types of behavioural policies – nudges and boosts. We distinguish them on the basis of the mechanisms through which they are expected to operate and identify the contextual conditions that are necessary for each policy to be successful. Our framework helps judging which type of policy is more likely to bring about the intended behavioural outcome in a given situation.
When social scientists began employing evolutionary game theory (EGT) in their disciplines, the question arose what the appropriate interpretation of the formal EGT framework would be. Social scientists have given different answer, of which I distinguish three basic kinds. I then proceed to uncover the conceptual tension between the formal framework of EGT, its application in the social sciences, and these three interpretations. First, I argue that EGT under the biological interpretation has a limited application in the social sciences, chiefly (...) because strategy replication often cannot be sensibly interpreted as strategy bearer reproduction in this domain. Second, I show that alternative replication mechanisms imply interpersonal comparability of strategy payoffs. Giving a meaningful interpretation to such comparisons is not an easy task for many social situations, and thus limits the applicability of EGT in this domain. Third, I argue that giving a new interpretation both to strategy replication and selection solves the issue of interpersonal comparability, but at the costs of making the new interpretation incompatible with natural selection interpretations of EGT. To the extent that social scientists seek such a natural selection interpretation, they face a dilemma: either face the challenge that interpersonal comparisons pose, or give up on the natural selection interpretation. By identifying these tensions, my analysis pleas for greater awareness of the specific purposes of EGT modelling in the social sciences, and for greater sensitivity to the underlying microstructure on which the evolutionary dynamics and other EGT solution concepts supervene. (shrink)
This paper provides arguments to philosophers, scientists, administrators and students for why science students should be instructed in a mandatory, custom-designed, interdisciplinary course in the philosophy of science. The argument begins by diagnosing that most science students are taught only conventional methodology: a fixed set of methods whose justification is rarely addressed. It proceeds by identifying seven benefits that scientists incur from going beyond these conventions and from acquiring abilities to analyse and evaluate justifications of scientific methods. It concludes that (...) teaching science students these skills makes them better scientists. Based on this argument, the paper then analyses the standard philosophy of science curriculum, and in particular its adequacy for teaching science students. It is argued that the standard curriculum on the one hand lacks important analytic tools relevant for going beyond conventional methodology—especially with respect to non-epistemic normative aspects of scientific practice—while on the other hand contains many topics and tools that are not relevant for the instruction of science students. Consequently, the optimal way of training science students in the analysis and evaluation of scientific methods requires a revision of the standard curriculum. Finally, the paper addresses five common characteristics of students taking such a course, which often clash with typical teaching approaches in philosophy. Strategies how best to deal with these constraints are offered for each of these characteristics. (shrink)
The five studies of this special section investigate the role of models and similar representational tools in interdisciplinarity. These studies were all written by philosophers of science, who focused on interdisciplinary episodes between disciplines and sub-disciplines ranging from physics, chemistry and biology to the computational sciences, sociology and economics. The reasons we present these divergent studies in a collective form are three. First, we want to establish model-exchange as a kind of interdisciplinary event. The five case studies, which are summarized (...) in Section 2 below, show the relevance of this kind. Arguing for the relative unity of these cases will, we hope, re-orient the current debate over interdisciplinarity so as to reflect more appropriately the importance of this kind. We discuss our view of the current state of the debate in Section 3. The evidence from these cases also helps us to develop a taxonomy of interdisciplinary model exchanges in Section 4da taxonomy, we would like to add, that might be useful for the discussion of interdisciplinary exchanges beyond the context of models and their transfer. The second reason for presenting these studies together is that they provide an important source of evidence for the philosophy of science. Over the last three decades, philosophy of science has increasingly differentiated into philosophies of various disciplines. This differentiation in our view has greatly increased our understanding of the scientific practices of the respective disciplines, including the epistemological and methodological standards and conventions on which these practices are based and by which they are evaluated. But it has also made it harder to compare these practices and standards across disciplines. The studies we present here are case studies of interdisciplinary exchange: they focus on the transfer, collaborative construction or parallel use of models and similar representational tools. They therefore provide a unique opportunity to investigate various disciplinary treatments of the same or at least similar representational tools. This allows the identification and comparison of different disciplinary practices and their underlying conventions as well as of the respective normative standards of their evaluation. By tracing the paths along which models travel between disciplines and research fields we can observe to which extent discipline-external practices associated with an adopted tool are retained or replaced by disciplineinternal practices. This generates invaluable information about both disciplinarity and interdisciplinarity. We develop this argument further in Section 5. The third reason for presenting these studies in collective form is that their philosophical analysis also has important normative implications for the notion of interdisciplinarity itself. Too often in the current (non-philosophical) discourse is interdisciplinarity cast as an exclusively integrative project: interdisciplinary exchange is often claimed to be successful only if the involved disciplines become mutually more integrated as a consequence of this process. In contrast to this, many of the cases presented here show that interdisciplinary exchange can be scientifically highly successful, even if at the end of the exchange disciplinary borders remain fully intact. Indeed, borders can be fruitfully crossed without any integration across these borders. Such considerations of divergence in scientific practices and tools offer arguments against a naïve plea for unitarian or non-pluralist versions of interdisciplinarity. Disciplinary divergences may have their justifications, and attempting exchanges that require the reduction of these divergences may consequently not be justified. We pursue this argument further in Section 6. (shrink)