Ways in which coherence is confirmation conducive

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Moretti, Luca
preprint description
Recent works in epistemology show that the claim that coherence is truth conducive – in the sense that, given suitable ceteris paribus conditions, more coherent sets of statements are always more probable – is dubious and possibly false. From this, it does not follows that coherence is a useless notion in epistemology and philosophy of science. Dietrich and Moretti 2005 have proposed a formal of account of how coherence is confirmation conducive – that is, of how the coherence of a set of statements facilitates the confirmation of such statements. This account is grounded in two confirmation transmission properties that are satisfied by some of the measures of coherence recently proposed in the literature. These properties explicate everyday and scientific uses of coherence. In his paper, I review the main findings of Dietrich and Moretti 2005 and define two evidence gathering properties that are satisfied by the same measures of coherence and constitute further ways in which coherence is confirmation conducive. At least one of these properties vindicates important applications of the notion of coherence in everyday life and in science.