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Fine-Tuning as old evidence, double-counting, and the multiverse

Friederich, Simon (2019) Fine-Tuning as old evidence, double-counting, and the multiverse. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, 31. pp. 363-377. ISSN 0269-8595

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Abstract

The idea that there might be multiple universes with different parameters of nature is often considered an attractive response to the finding that various parameters appear to be delicately fine-tuned for life. The present paper investigates whether the appeal to fine-tuning can legitimately be combined with an appeal to independent empirical evidence for other universes or whether, as suggested by Cory Juhl, combining such appeals inevitably results in illegitimate double counting of the finding that the parameters are right for life. In doing so, the paper takes into account the fact that the parameters' life-friendliness is old evidence for us, which makes Bayesianism's problem of old evidence relevant to Bayesian analysis of its evidential impact. Ultimately, the verdict reached is that the warning of double counting is helpful, but that double counting can in principle be avoided. The paper highlights remaining independent challenges against the fine-tuning argument for the multiverse.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Friederich, Simonemail@simonfriederich.eu0000-0003-4372-5995
Keywords: fine-tuning, Bayesianism, old-evidence problem, anthropic reasoning
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Evidence
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Depositing User: Dr. Simon Friederich
Date Deposited: 05 Jan 2020 10:52
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2020 10:52
Item ID: 16784
Journal or Publication Title: International Studies in the Philosophy of Science
Publisher: Routledge: Francis and Taylor
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1080/02698595.2019.1565214
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Cosmology
General Issues > Evidence
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Date: 9 April 2019
Page Range: pp. 363-377
Volume: 31
ISSN: 0269-8595
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/16784

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