Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP)

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Exploring Scientific Method: Evidence, Explanation, and Unification in Science (8-9 May 2017)

Idea & Motivation

Philosophical investigation into scientific method is a well-established area within the philosophy of science. The aim of this workshop is to advance our understanding of three central topics within this investigation: the role that evidence plays in science; the structure of scientific explanations; and the role of unification in science. To this end, the following questions will be addressed. Concerning evidence: In what sense is it better to gather evidence from various sources? What does it mean for evidence to be reliable? Can biased research furnish good evidence? As regards explanation: How should we characterise causal explanation? Is causal explanation possible in quantum mechanics? How are various different forms of explanation in science related? Can certain of them be fruitfully thought of as species of a single genus? Finally, unification: What is the best way to characterise the inferential structure of certain types of unifying explanation? How do unifying hypotheses guide theory construction?

Organizing Committee

  • Lorenzo Casini (Geneva/MCMP)
  • Michael Cuffaro (University of Western Ontario/MCMP)
  • Molly Kao (Université de Montréal)
  • Reuben Stern (LMU Munich/MCMP)


Day 1 (08 May 2017)

10:00 - 11:00 Michael Cuffaro: Algorithmic How-Possibly Explanation
11:15 - 12:15 Laura Felline: A role for Mechanistic Explanation in Physics: the Measurement Problem
12:15 - 14:00 Lunch
14:00 - 15:00 Barbara Osimani: Reliability and Replication: Statistics Meets Formal Epistemology
15:15 - 16:15 Alex Reutlinger: What is Epistemically Wrong With Biased Research?
16:30 - 17:30 Lorenzo Casini and Radin Dardashti: How Minimal Models Explain -- Within and Outside Physics

Day 2 (09 May 2017)

10:00 - 11:00 Ben Eva and Reuben Stern: Asymmetric Explanatory Power
11:15 - 12:15 Andreas Hüttemann: Causation in an Explanatory Context
12:15 - 14:00 Lunch
14:00 - 15:00 Juergen Landes: Variety of Evidence
15:15 - 16:15 Molly Kao: Unification as a Strategy for Pursuit
16:30 - 17:30 Branden Fitelson: Confirmation, Causation, and Simpson’s Paradox



Edmund-Rumpler-Str. 9
Room A 181
80939 München

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