On under-determination in cosmology

Citation data:

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, ISSN: 1355-2198, Vol: 46, Issue: 1, Page: 57-69

Publication Year:
2014
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Repository URL:
http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9866
DOI:
10.1016/j.shpsb.2013.06.003
Author(s):
Butterfield, Jeremy
Publisher(s):
Elsevier BV, Elsevier
Tags:
Arts and Humanities, Physics and Astronomy
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article description
I discuss how modern cosmology illustrates under-determination of theoretical hypotheses by data, in ways that are different from most philosophical discussions. I emphasise cosmology's concern with what data could in principle be collected by a single observer (Section 2 ); and I give a broadly sceptical discussion of cosmology's appeal to the cosmological principle as a way of breaking the under-determination (Section 3 ).

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