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Understanding from models
Workshop: Understanding from models
Venue: IHPST Paris.
Date: 03 November 2017
Many philosophers hold that explanation is intimately tied to understanding, specifically many hold that the goal of scientific explanation is to provide understanding of physical phenomena or in general of nature (de Regt 2013; Hempel 1965; Strevens 2008, 2013). The views on the relation between explanation and understanding range from largely dismissive (Hempel 1965; Trout 2002) which see the scientific understanding as a pragmatic or psychological by-product of explanation which is not a proper subject of philosophical inquiry, and which should rather belong to psychology; to proposals to treat the understanding independently from the explanation i.e. that there could be understanding without explanation (Lipton 2009; Schurz and Lambert 1994; Newman 2012, 2017). The views in between these two extremes can best be formulated as a claim that there could not be understanding without explanation (Bangu 2013, 2017; Strevens 2008, 2013; Khalifa 2012).
However, in recent years a convergent set of ideas started to emerge, that link the structure of scientific models directly to understanding (Bokulich 2008; Batterman and Rice 2014; Van Riel 2015).
The aim of this workshop is to examine the common features of these accounts, and whether it is possible to formulate a unified theory of scientific understanding that stems from models themselves.
Alisa Bokulich (Center for Philosophy & History of Science at Boston University/Durham University, UK)
Marion Vorms (University of London-Birkbeck, Department of Psychological Sciences/IHPST (CNRS/ Université Paris I Sorbonne))-TBC
Sorin Bangu (University of Bergen, Norway)
Samuel Schindler (Centre for Science Studies at Aarhus University, Denmark)
Philippe Huneman (IHPST (CNRS/ Université Paris I Sorbonne)-TBC
Daniel Kostic (IHPST (CNRS/ Université Paris I Sorbonne)