Causal Inference as Inference to the Best Explanation

Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
We argue that a modified version of Mill’s method of agreement can strongly confirm causal generalizations. This mode of causal inference implicates the explanatory virtues of mechanism, analogy, consilience, and simplicity, and we identify it as a species of Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE). Since rational causal inference provides normative guidance, IBE is not a heuristic for Bayesian rationality. We give it an objective Bayesian formalization, one that has no need of principles of indifference and yields responses to the Voltaire objection, van Fraassen’s Bad Lot objection, and John Norton’s recent objection to IBE.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Upload history
Archival date: 2022-07-13
View other versions
Added to PP

56 (#63,705)

6 months
56 (#13,938)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?