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An inferential conception of scientific representation

Suárez, Mauricio (2004) An inferential conception of scientific representation. Philosophy of Science, 71 (5). pp. 767-779. ISSN 0031-8248

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Identification Number: 10.1086/421415


This paper defends an inferential conception of scientific representation. It approaches the notion of representation in a deflationary spirit, and minimally characterizes the concept as it appears in science by means of two necessary conditions: its essential directionality and its capacity to allow surrogate reasoning and inference. The conception is defended by showing that it successfully meets the objections that make its competitors, such as isomorphism and similarity, untenable. In addition the inferential conception captures the objectivity of the cognitive representations used by science, it sheds light on their truth and completeness, and it explains the source of the analogy between scientific and artistic modes of representation.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2004 Philosophy of Science Association
Divisions: CPNSS
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Q Science > Q Science (General)
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2011 15:48
Last Modified: 14 Jul 2024 20:48

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