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Bayesian Statistical Inference and Approximate Truth

Vassend, Olav B. (2016) Bayesian Statistical Inference and Approximate Truth. In: UNSPECIFIED.

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Abstract

Scientists and Bayesian statisticians often study hypotheses that they know to be false. This creates an interpretive problem because the Bayesian probability of a hypothesis is supposed to represent the probability that the hypothesis is true. I investigate whether Bayesianism can accommodate the idea that false hypotheses are sometimes approximately true or that some hypotheses or models can be closer to the truth than others. I argue that the idea that some hypotheses are approximately true in an absolute sense is hard to square with Bayesianism, but that the notion that some hypotheses are comparatively closer to the truth than others can be made compatible with Bayesianism, and that this provides an adequate and potentially useful solution to the interpretive problem. Finally, I compare my ``verisimilitude'' solution to the interpretive problem with a ``counterfactual'' solution recently proposed by Jan Sprenger.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Vassend, Olav B.vassend@wisc.edu
Keywords: Bayesian statistics, verisimilitude, closeness to the truth, interpretation of probability, Bayesian inference
Subjects: General Issues > Models and Idealization
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Depositing User: Olav Vassend
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2016 16:56
Last Modified: 29 Oct 2016 16:56
Item ID: 12551
Subjects: General Issues > Models and Idealization
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Date: 28 October 2016
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/12551

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