PSA2016: The 25th Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association

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Still no work for a theory of grounding

There are prima facie reasons to think that the relation that obtains between a mechanism and the phenomena for which it is responsible is a grounding relation. If so, grounding might be the relation philosophers have tried to get at in the debate about mechanistic constitution or what I call “mechanism-dependence”. I will argue however that theory of Grounding cannot help us understand this relation. Relations of mechanism dependence often violate the formal conditions on grounding. More fundamentally, though, mechanism dependence cannot be understood as grounding because mechanism dependence is not one relation, but many.

Author Information:

Stuart Glennan    
Department of Philosophy
Butler University


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