Synthese

http://link.springer.com/journal/11229

List of Papers (Total 344)

Lessons from the Large Hadron Collider for model-based experimentation: the concept of a model of data acquisition and the scope of the hierarchy of models

According to the hierarchy of models (HoM) account of scientific experimentation developed by Patrick Suppes and elaborated by Deborah Mayo, theoretical considerations about the phenomena of interest are involved in an experiment through theoretical models that in turn relate to experimental data through data models, via the linkage of experimental models. In this paper, I dispute ...

Time travel, hyperspace and Cheshire Cats

H. G. Wells’ Time Traveller inhabits uniform Newtonian time. Where relativistic/quantum travelers into the past follow spacetime curvatures, past-bound Wellsians must reverse their direction of travel relative to absolute time. William Grey and Robin Le Poidevin claim reversing Wellsians must overlap with themselves or fade away piecemeal like the Cheshire Cat. Self-overlap is ...

The epistemic superiority of experiment to simulation

This paper defends the naïve thesis that the method of experiment has per se an epistemic superiority over the method of computer simulation, a view that has been rejected by some philosophers writing about simulation, and whose grounds have been hard to pin down by its defenders. I further argue that this superiority does not come from the experiment’s object being materially ...

Predictive processing and the representation wars: a victory for the eliminativist (via fictionalism)

In this paper I argue that, by combining eliminativist and fictionalist approaches toward the sub-personal representational posits of predictive processing, we arrive at an empirically robust and yet metaphysically innocuous cognitive scientific framework. I begin the paper by providing a non-representational account of the five key posits of predictive processing ...

The logic of epistemic justification

Theories of epistemic justification are commonly assessed by exploring their predictions about particular hypothetical cases—predictions as to whether justification is present or absent in this or that case. With a few exceptions, it is much less common for theories of epistemic justification to be assessed by exploring their predictions about logical principles. The exceptions are ...

On pain experience, multidisciplinary integration and the level-laden conception of science

Multidisciplinary models aggregating ‘lower-level’ biological and ‘higher-level’ psychological and social determinants of a phenomenon raise a puzzle. How is the interaction between the physical, the psychological and the social conceptualized and explained? Using biopsychosocial models of pain as an illustration, I argue that these models are in fact level-neutral compilations of ...

Why the Canberra plan won’t help you do serious metaphysics

Jackson (From metaphysics to ethics, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1998) argues that conceptual analysis plays a modest, albeit crucial, role in ‘serious metaphysics’: roughly, the project of demystifying phenomena we take to be mysterious by locating them in the natural world. This defence of conceptual analysis is associated with ‘the Canberra Plan’, a philosophical ...

Bayesian cognitive science, predictive brains, and the nativism debate

The rise of Bayesianism in cognitive science promises to shape the debate between nativists and empiricists into more productive forms—or so have claimed several philosophers and cognitive scientists. The present paper explicates this claim, distinguishing different ways of understanding it. After clarifying what is at stake in the controversy between nativists and empiricists, and ...

Can the empirical sciences contribute to the moral realism/anti-realism debate?

An increasing number of moral realists and anti-realists have recently attempted to support their views by appeal to science. Arguments of this kind (such as evolutionary debunking arguments or arguments from moral disagreement) are typically criticized on the object-level. In addition, however, one occasionally also comes across a more sweeping metatheoretical skepticism. ...

Assertion, belief, and context

This paper argues for a treatment of belief as essentially sensitive to certain features of context. The first part gives an argument that we must take belief to be context-sensitive in the same way that assertion is, if we are to preserve appealing principles tying belief to sincere assertion. In particular, whether an agent counts as believing that p in a context depends on the ...