Underdetermination and the Claims of Science

eBook (PDF), 207 Pages
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Claims about the underdetermination of theory by data are often hidden in an umbra of obscurity and a penumbra of equivocation. So many various phenomena pass for "underdetermination" that it is tempting to think that it is no unified phenomenon at all, so Chapter 1 provides a framework within which all these worries can be seen as species of one genus: A claim of underdetermination involves (at least implicitly) a set of rival theories, a standard of responsible judgment, and a scope of circumstances in which responsible choice between the rivals is impossible. Within this framework, later chapters examine several varieties and alleged examples of underdetermination. The author is an associate professor of philosophy at the University at Albany, SUNY. This was the author's PhD thesis in Philosophy at UC San Diego. It was developed into a series of papers, many of which are available on his website.
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P.D. Magnus
November 11, 2011
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