Ontological Solutions to the Problem of Induction

Logos and Episteme 13 (1):65-74 (2022)
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Abstract

The idea of the uniformity of nature, as a solution to the problem of induction, has at least two contemporary versions: natural kinds and natural necessity. Then there are at least three alternative ontological ideas addressing the problem of induction. In this paper, I articulate how these ideas are used to justify the practice of inductive inference, and compare them, in terms of their applicability, to see whether each of them is preferred in addressing the problem of induction. Given the variety of contexts in which inductive inferences are made, from natural science to social science and to everyday thinking, I suggest that no singular idea is absolutely preferred, and a proper strategy is probably to welcome the plurality of ideas helpful to induction, and to take pragmatic considerations into account, in order to judge in every single case.

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Mohammad Mahdi Hatef
Iranian Institute of Philosophy (Alumnus)

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