Edoardo Datteri

Simulation, Explanation, and the Role of Generalizations in Cognitive Science

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Some methodological and epistemological issues related to the setting-up and performing of good simulation experiments in cognitive (neuro)science are intimately connected with philosophical problems concerning the nature of scientific explanation. Of particular interest, in this connection, is the problem of understanding the role of generalizations in neuroscientific explanation. In this article, it will be argued that mechanistic explanations in neuroscience are essentially based on exceptionless regularities (contrary to what is often claimed in philosophical reflections on the nature of neuroscientific explanation). This view has several implications for what concerns the methodological problem of building accurate simulations of adaptive and intelligent behaviors.

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