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Experiments, Simulations, and Epistemic Privilege

Parke, Emily C. (2014) Experiments, Simulations, and Epistemic Privilege. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Experiments are commonly thought to have epistemic privilege over simulations. Two ideas underpin this belief: First, experiments generate greater inferential power than simulations, and second, simulations cannot surprise us the way experiments can. In this paper I argue that neither of these claims is true of experiments versus simulations in general. We should give up the common practice of resting in-principle judgments about the epistemic value of cases of scientific inquiry on whether we classify those cases as experiments or simulations, per se. To the extent that either methodology puts researchers in a privileged epistemic position, this is context-sensitive.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Parke, Emily C. eparke@sas.upenn.edu
Keywords: experiment, simulation, modeling, materiality, epistemic value, experimental evolution, surprise
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
General Issues > Experimentation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Depositing User: Emily Parke
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2014 10:32
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2014 21:58
Item ID: 10664
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
General Issues > Experimentation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Date: 2014
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/10664

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