סמינר מחקר 1 בינואר: The Exploratory Role of Models and Idealizations - Elay Shech
It has been argued by some that, apart from helping with tractability and drawing attention to factors in models that are not difference makers, idealizations play no substantive role in science. Others hold that idealizations do play a substantive role in science since they are essential for scientific explanation. In this talk I develop a midway position between these two extremes. I will argue that idealizations and limiting cases in models play an exploratory role in science, and that exploration is essential for scientific understanding. Four senses of exploration are presented: exploration of the structure and representational capacities of theory; proof-of-principle demonstrations; potential explanations; and exploring the suitability of target systems. I'll reflect on how my case studies and claims compare to accounts of idealization in the philosophy of science literature such as Michael Weisberg’s three-fold taxonomy.