Chapter

Final Definitions and Realism

Peter Achinstein

in The Book of Evidence

Published in print October 2001 | ISBN: 9780195143898
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833023 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195143892.003.0008

Series: Oxford Studies in the Philosophy of Science

 Final Definitions and Realism

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A final definition of ”potential evidence” is proposed, and it is shown how veridical, ES‐, and subjective evidence can all be defined using the concept of potential evidence. Hempel's ”conditions of adequacy” for a definition of evidence are examined to see which ones are appropriate. Finally, it is shown that the definitions of the evidence proposed commit one to scientific realism, and that instrumentalist interpretations of evidence that employ the concept of an ”explanatory connection” will not be possible.

Keywords: conditions of adequacy; ES‐evidence; evidence; explanatory connection; Hempel; instrumentalism; potential evidence; realism; subjective evidence; veridical evidence

Chapter.  9050 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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