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Earman on Underdetermination and Empirical Indistinguishability

By I. Douven and L. Horsten


Earman (1993) distinguishes three notions of empirical indistinguishability\ud and offers a rigorous framework to investigate how each of these notions\ud relates to the problem of underdetermination of theory choice. He uses\ud some of the results obtained in this framework to argue for a version of\ud scientific anti-realism. In the present paper we first criticize Earman’s\ud arguments for that position. Secondly, we propose and motivate a modification\ud of Earman’s framework and establish several results concerning\ud some of the notions of indistinguishability in this modified framework.\ud Finally, we interpret these results in the light of the realism/anti-realism\ud debate

Topics: Wijsbegeerte, Underdetermination, Empirical Indistinguishability, Realism/Anti-Realism Debate, Confirmation Theory
Year: 1998
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