Scientific models: the problem of representation

Autores

  • Olimpia Lombardi Universidad de Buenos Aires
  • Hernán Acorinti Universidad de Buenos Aires
  • Juan Camilo Martínez Universidad de Buenos Aires

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.11606/S1678-31662016000100008

Palavras-chave:

Representation. Quantum chemistry. Covalent bond. Incompatible models. Statistical mechanics

Resumo

This article focuses on the relationship between knowledge and representation. We consider the difficulties of the approaches that try to justify the representative character of models. We point out that the attempts to account for representation from a perspective that does not include the agent as a constitutive element lack enough philosophical support: the characterization of representation in unintentional terms face conceptual difficulties that are hard to overcome. As a positive proposal, we discuss a number of incompatible models to call into question the leading role of representation in scientific knowledge. Those cases show that scientific knowledge is generated because those models allow us to predict and manipulate the behavior of some variables of the system, even if this does not imply the possibility of describing how effectively the system is in its unobservable aspects. Finally, by providing a case where the same model integrates incompatible theories, we can extend our thesis to the domain of theories. The main hypothesis we try to establish is that, although the association between knowledge and representation must not be definitively given up, it should be relaxed so that the possibility of recognizing the legitimacy of non-representative knowledge be admitted

Biografia do Autor

Olimpia Lombardi, Universidad de Buenos Aires

Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Hernán Acorinti, Universidad de Buenos Aires

Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Juan Camilo Martínez, Universidad de Buenos Aires

Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Publicado

2016-06-06

Como Citar

Lombardi, O., Acorinti, H., & Martínez, J. C. (2016). Scientific models: the problem of representation. Scientiae Studia, 14(1), 151-174. https://doi.org/10.11606/S1678-31662016000100008

Edição

Seção

Artigos