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Deterministic Chance

Glynn, Luke (2010) Deterministic Chance. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 61 (1). pp. 51-80.

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Abstract

I argue that there are non-trivial objective chances (that is, objective chances other than 0 and 1) even in deterministic worlds. The argument is straightforward. I observe that there are probabilistic special scientific laws even in deterministic worlds. These laws project non-trivial probabilities for the events that they concern. And these probabilities play the chance role and so should be regarded as chances as opposed, for example, to epistemic probabilities or credences.
The supposition of non-trivial deterministic chances might seem to land us in contradiction. The fundamental laws of deterministic worlds project trivial probabilities for the very same events that are assigned non-trivial probabilities by the special scientific laws. I argue that any appearance of tension is dissolved by recognition of the level-relativity of chances. There is therefore no obstacle to accepting non-trivial chance-role-playing deterministic probabilities as genuine chances.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Glynn, Lukelglynn@caltech.edu
Keywords: Chance; Determinism; Best Systems Analysis; Special Sciences; Mendelian Genetics
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Molecular Biology/Genetics
General Issues > Determinism/Indeterminism
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Depositing User: Dr. Luke Fenton-Glynn
Date Deposited: 08 May 2013 14:24
Last Modified: 08 May 2013 14:24
Item ID: 9728
Journal or Publication Title: British Journal for the Philosophy of Science
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Official URL: http://bjps.oxfordjournals.org/content/61/1/51.ful...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1093/bjps/axp020
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Molecular Biology/Genetics
General Issues > Determinism/Indeterminism
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Date: 2010
Page Range: pp. 51-80
Volume: 61
Number: 1
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9728

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