Models constitute an increasingly important object of study for philosophy of biology. Yet, no univocal and sufficiently comprehensive definitions of modeling and model are available. Here I adopt a specific notion of a model as a “stable target of explanation”, and use it to explore population genetics in a uncommon way. Mathematical population genetics is often referred to as a great set or “family” of models, where “models” mean, arguably, equations of gene frequencies or phenotypic change. In this sense, modeling is seen as an activity of equations specification, tuning, and calculation. The notion of a model as a “stable target of explanation” does not apply to population genetics equations. Rather, it is suitable for capturing Mendelian population, i.e. a formal combination space population genetics equations are about. One interesting result of my approach is to liken - at least for some epistemological characteristics - a formal system to organic systems called “model organisms” in experimental biology, like e.g. Drosophila melanogaster, or Caenorhabditis elegans. A single notion of a model, one that emphasizes model autonomy - with interesting epistemological problems about representation, explanation, and prediction - seems to capture effectively both Mendelian population and model organisms. Models as stable targets of explanation are systems selected for intensive research, yielding their stability and a cost-effective apparatus of experimental resources; they feature some degree of artificiality, and are never exhaustively known, even in case of complete artificiality.
|Citazione:||Serrelli, E. (2011). Mendelian population as a model, intended as a "stable target of explanation". Intervento presentato a: Conference of the European Philosophy of Science Association, October 5th-8th, Athens, Greece.|
|Carattere della pubblicazione:||Scientifica|
|Presenza di un coautore afferente ad Istituzioni straniere:||No|
|Titolo:||Mendelian population as a model, intended as a "stable target of explanation"|
|Data di pubblicazione:||ott-2011|
|Nome del convegno:||Conference of the European Philosophy of Science Association, October 5th-8th|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||02 - Intervento a convegno|