There Is a Special Problem of Scientific Representation

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Philosophy of Science, ISSN: 0031-8248, Vol: 84, Issue: 5, Page: 970-981

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Boesch, Brandon
University of Chicago Press
Arts and Humanities
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article description
Callender and Cohen argue that there is no need for a special account of the constitution of scientific representation. I argue that scientific representation is communal and therefore deeply tied to the practice in which it is embedded. The communal nature is accounted for by licensing, the activities of scientific practice by which scientists establish a representation. A case study of the Lotka-Volterra model reveals how licensure is a constitutive element of the representational relationship. Thus, any account of the constitution of scientific representation must account for licensing, meaning that there is a special problemof scientific representation.