Nicola Lettieri

"Ius In Silico". Legal Science and Generative Epistemology

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The use of computer simulations to describe, explain or predict real phenomena is now a common practice in many fields of scientific investigation. In recent years, the epistemological paradigm of simulation has gained a significant role in social sciences thanks to the spread of agent based models, the mainstay of a research program that aims at studying social dynamics «in silico», generating and reproducing them within artificial societies simulated by the computer. Legal science has so far fallen behind in the use of such methodology. Yet, agent based models seem to open interesting perspectives to the analysis of the interactions between individuals, society and legal norms. The paper discusses the congruity of the simulation method to the aims of legal studies. Starting point: a consideration on the identity of legal science and its objectives.

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