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Changing Use of Formal Methods in Philosophy: Late 2000s vs. Late 2010s

Fletcher, Samuel C. and Knobe, Joshua and Wheeler, Gregory and Woodcock, Brian A. (2021) Changing Use of Formal Methods in Philosophy: Late 2000s vs. Late 2010s. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Traditionally, logic has been the dominant formal method within philosophy. Are logical methods still dominant today, or have the types of formal methods used in philosophy changed in recent times? To address this question, we coded a sample of philosophy papers from the late 2000s and from the late 2010s for the formal methods they used. The results indicate that (a) the proportion of papers using logical methods remained more or less constant over that time period but (b) the proportion of papers using probabilistic methods was approximately three times higher in the late 2010s than it was in the late 2000s. Further analyses explored this change by looking more closely at specific methods, specific levels of technical engagement, and specific subdisciplines within philosophy. These analyses indicate that the increasing proportion of papers using probabilistic methods was pervasive, not confined to particular probabilistic methods, levels of sophistication, or subdisciplines.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Fletcher, Samuel C.scfletch@umn.edu0000-0002-9061-8976
Knobe, Joshuajoshua.knobe@yale.edu
Wheeler, Gregorygregory.r.wheeler@gmail.com
Woodcock, Brian A.brianwoodcock99@gmail.com
Keywords: Formal methods in philosophy, digital humanities, metaphilosophy, Philosophical Studies, logic, probability
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Logic
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Depositing User: Prof. Samuel C. Fletcher
Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2021 14:31
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2021 14:31
Item ID: 19575
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Logic
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Date: 14 September 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19575

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