The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

TitleThe Structure of Scientific Theories, Explanation, and Unification. A Causal-Structural Account
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsLeuridan, B
JournalThe British Journal for the Philosophy of Science
Volume65
Number4
Pagination717–771
Abstract

What are scientific theories and how should they be represented? In this article, I propose a causal–structural account, according to which scientific theories are to be represented as sets of interrelated causal and credal nets. In contrast with other accounts of scientific theories (such as Sneedian structuralism, Kitcher’s unificationist view, and Darden’s theory of theoretical components), this leaves room for causality to play a substantial role. As a result, an interesting account of explanation is provided, which sheds light on explanatory unification within a causalist framework. The theory of classical genetics is used as a case study.

DOI10.1093/bjps/axt015
Citation Keyleuridan2013structure
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