The role of unification in micro-explanations of physical laws

TitleThe role of unification in micro-explanations of physical laws
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsWeber, E, Lefevere, M
JournalTheoria - revista de teoria historia y fundamentos de la ciencia

In the literature on scientific explanation, there is a classical distinction between explanations of particular facts and explanations of laws. This paper is about explanations of laws, more specifically about microexplanations of laws in physics. We investigate whether providing unificatory information has a surplus value in micro-explanations of physical laws. Unificatory information is information that provides ontological unification in the sense defined by Uskali Mäki. We argue that providing unificatory information may lead to explanations with more explanatory power (we use Jim Woodward’s concept of explanatory power for that) and that it may lead to more strongly supported explanations.

Citation Key4265612
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