How to Get Causes from Probabilities

Nancy Cartwright

in Nature's Capacities and Their Measurement

Published in print April 1994 | ISBN: 9780198235071
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597169 | DOI:

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

How to Get Causes from Probabilities

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In the context of linear causal systems, ‘How to Get Causes from Probabilities’ shows that given correct background information about other causal facts, certain probabilistic relations (like correlations and partial correlations) are both necessary and sufficient for the truth of new causal facts. This is done by showing how simple structural models from econometrics can be read causally if the conditions for identification of the model are met, and a generalized version of Reichenbach's principle of the common cause is assumed.

Keywords: cause; common cause; correlation; econometrics; identification; probabilities; Reichenbach

Chapter.  11071 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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