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  1. added 2019-04-22
    Reduction.Andreas Hüttemann & Alan Love - 2016 - In Paul Humphreys (ed.), The Oxford Handbook in Philosophy of Science. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 460-484.
    Reduction and reductionism have been central philosophical topics in analytic philosophy of science for more than six decades. Together they encompass a diversity of issues from metaphysics and epistemology. This article provides an introduction to the topic that illuminates how contemporary epistemological discussions took their shape historically and limns the contours of concrete cases of reduction in specific natural sciences. The unity of science and the impulse to accomplish compositional reduction in accord with a layer-cake vision of the sciences, the (...)
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  2. added 2018-02-25
    Should Explanations Omit the Details?Darren Bradley - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.
    There is a widely shared belief that the higher level sciences can provide better explanations than lower level sciences. But there is little agreement about exactly why this is so. It is often suggested that higher level explanations are better because they omit details. I will argue instead that the preference for higher level explanations is just a special case of our general preference for informative, logically strong, beliefs. I argue that our preference for informative beliefs entirely accounts for why (...)
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  3. added 2017-12-01
    Inter-Theory Relations in Quantum Gravity: Correspondence, Reduction, and Emergence.Karen Crowther - 2017 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics.
    Relationships between current theories, and relationships between current theories and the sought theory of quantum gravity (QG), play an essential role in motivating the need for QG, aiding the search for QG, and defining what would count as QG. Correspondence is the broad class of inter-theory relationships intended to demonstrate the necessary compatibility of two theories whose domains of validity overlap, in the overlap regions. The variety of roles that correspondence plays in the search for QG are illustrated, using examples (...)
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  4. added 2017-05-19
    Renormalizability, Fundamentality and a Final Theory: The Role of UV-Completion in the Search for Quantum Gravity.Karen Crowther & Niels Linnemann - 2017 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axx052.
    Principles are central to physical reasoning, particularly in the search for a theory of quantum gravity (QG), where novel empirical data is lacking. One principle widely adopted in the search for QG is UV completion: the idea that a theory should (formally) hold up to all possible high energies. We argue---/contra/ standard scientific practice---that UV-completion is poorly-motivated as a guiding principle in theory-construction, and cannot be used as a criterion of theory-justification in the search for QG. For this, we explore (...)
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  5. added 2016-09-21
    Reviewing Reduction in a Preferential Model‐Theoretic Context.Emma Ruttkamp & Johannes Heidema - 2005 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 19 (2):123 – 146.
    In this article, we redefine classical notions of theory reduction in such a way that model-theoretic preferential semantics becomes part of a realist depiction of this aspect of science. We offer a model-theoretic reconstruction of science in which theory succession or reduction is often better - or at a finer level of analysis - interpreted as the result of model succession or reduction. This analysis leads to 'defeasible reduction', defined as follows: The conjunction of the assumptions of a reducing theory (...)
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  6. added 2015-03-23
    Intertheoretic Reduction: A Neuroscientist's Field Guide.Paul M. Churchland & Patricia S. Churchland - 1992 - In Y. Christen & P. S. Churchland (eds.), Neurophilosophy and Alzheimer's Disease. Cambridge: Springer Verlag. pp. 18--29.
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  7. added 2015-03-11
    Montague Reduction, Confirmation, and the Syntax-Semantics Relation.Stephan Hartmann & Kristina Liefke - manuscript
    Intertheoretic relations are an important topic in the philosophy of science. However, since their classical discussion by Ernest Nagel, such relations have mostly been restricted to relations between pairs of theories in the natural sciences. In this paper, we present a model of a new type of intertheoretic relation, called 'Montague Reduction', which is assumed in Montague's framework for the analysis and interpretation of natural language syntax. To motivate the adoption of our new model, we show that this model extends (...)
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  8. added 2015-02-14
    Theoretical Identities as Explanantia and Explananda.Kevin Morris - 2011 - American Philosophical Quarterly 48 (4):373-385.
    The mind-brain identity theory, the thesis that sensations are identical with properties or processes of the brain, was introduced into contemporary discussion by U.T. Place, Herbert Feigl, and J.J.C Smart in the 1950s. Despite its widespread rejection in the following decades, the identity theory has received several carefully articulated defenses in recent years. Aside from developing novel responses to well-known arguments against the identity theory, contemporary identity theorists have argued that the epistemological resources available to support the adoption of identities (...)
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  9. added 2014-04-01
    Species-Specific Properties and More Narrow Reductive Strategies.Ronald P. Endicott - 1993 - Erkenntnis 38 (3):303-21.
    In light of the phenomenon of multiple realizability, many philosophers wanted to preserve the mind-brain identity theory by resorting to a “narrow reductive strategy” whereby one (a) finds mental properties which are (b) sufficiently narrow to avoid the phenomenon of multiple realization, while being (c) explanatorily adequate to the demands of psychological theorizing. That is, one replaces the conception of a mental property as more general feature of cognitive systems with many less general properties, for example, replacing the conception of (...)
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  10. added 2014-03-23
    Collapse of the New Wave.Ronald P. Endicott - 1998 - Journal of Philosophy 95 (2):53-72.
    I critically evaluate the influential new wave account of theory reduction in science developed by Paul Churchland and Clifford Hooker. First, I cast doubt on claims that the new wave account enjoys a number of theoretical virtues over its competitors, such as the ability to represent how false theories are reduced by true theories. Second, I argue that the genuinely novel claim that a corrected theory must be specified entirely by terms from the basic reducing theory is in fact too (...)
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  11. added 2014-03-19
    Post-Structuralist Angst - Critical Notice: John Bickle, Psychoneural Reduction: The New Wave.Ronald P. Endicott - 2001 - Philosophy of Science 68 (3):377-393.
    I critically evaluate Bickle’s version of scientific theory reduction. I press three main points. First, a small point, Bickle modifies the new wave account of reduction developed by Paul Churchland and Clifford Hooker by treating theories as set-theoretic structures. But that structuralist gloss seems to lose what was distinctive about the Churchland-Hooker account, namely, that a corrected theory must be specified entirely by terms and concepts drawn from the basic reducing theory. Set-theoretic structures are not terms or concepts but the (...)
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  12. added 2010-04-26
    Reinforcing the Three ‘R's: Reduction, Reception, and Replacement.Ronald P. Endicott - 2007 - In M. Schouten & H. Looren de Jong (eds.), The Matter of the Mind: Philosophical Essays on Psychology, Neuroscience, and Reduction. Blackwell.
    Philosophers of science have offered different accounts of what it means for one scientific theory to reduce to another. I propose a more or less friendly amendment to Kenneth Schaffner’s “General Reduction-Replacement” model of scientific unification. Schaffner interprets scientific unification broadly in terms of a continuum from theory reduction to theory replacement. As such, his account leaves no place on its continuum for type irreducible and irreplaceable theories. The same is true for other accounts that incorporate Schaffner's continuum, for example, (...)
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  13. added 2009-12-16
    Eliminativist Undercurrents in the New Wave Model of Psychoneural Reduction.Cory Wright - 2000 - Journal of Mind and Behavior 21 (4):413-436.
    "New wave" reductionism aims at advancing a kind of reduction that is stronger than unilateral dependency of the mental on the physical. It revolves around the idea that reduction between theoretical levels is a matter of degree, and can be laid out on a continuum between a "smooth" pole (theoretical identity) and a "bumpy" pole (extremely revisionary). It also entails that both higher and lower levels of the reductive relationship sustain some degree of explanatory autonomy. The new wave predicts that (...)
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