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Conceptual Roles of Evolvability across Evolutionary Biology: Between Diversity and Unification

Villegas, Cristina and Love, Alan C. and Nuño de la Rosa, Laura and Brigandt, Ingo and Wagner, Günter P. (2021) Conceptual Roles of Evolvability across Evolutionary Biology: Between Diversity and Unification. [Preprint]

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Abstract

A number of biologists and philosophers have noted the diversity of interpretations of evolvability in contemporary evolutionary research. Different clusters of research defined by co-citation patterns or shared methodological orientation sometimes concentrate on distinct conceptions of evolvability. We examine five different activities where the notion of evolvability plays conceptual roles in evolutionary biological investigation: setting a research agenda, characterization, explanation, prediction, and control. Our analysis of representative examples demonstrates how different conceptual roles of evolvability are quasi-independent and yet exhibit important relationships across scientific activities. It also provides us with the resources to detail two distinct strategies for how evolvability can help to synthesize disparate areas of research and thereby potentially serve as a unifying concept in evolutionary biology.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Villegas, Cristinacrvilleg@ucm.es0000-0002-6402-5288
Love, Alan C.aclove@umn.edu
Nuño de la Rosa, Lauralauranun@ucm.es0000-0003-0513-0077
Brigandt, Ingobrigandt@ualberta.ca000-0003-0283-1337
Wagner, Günter P.gunter.wagner@yale.edu
Additional Information: To appear in: Evolvability. T. Hansen, D. Houle, M. Pavličev, and C. Pélabon (eds), Vienna Series in Theoretical Biology, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.
Keywords: characterization, concepts, control, evolvability, explanation, prediction, research agenda, unification
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
General Issues > Structure of Theories
Depositing User: Ingo Brigandt
Date Deposited: 31 Aug 2021 04:06
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2021 04:06
Item ID: 19517
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
General Issues > Structure of Theories
Date: 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19517

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