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Event: Workshop: Explanatory Power

Event date June 14, 2018 - June 15, 2018
Submission deadline November 01, 2017
Location Switzerland
Host(s) University of Geneva
Event website/information For more info, email

EXPLANATORY POWER – University of Geneva, 14-15 June 2018

A workshop in the in the DACH project “Inferentialism, Bayesianism, and Scientific Explanation”.


Over the last fifty years, many philosophers of science have addressed the question of what constitutes a scientific explanation. Less attention has been paid to the questions of when one explanation is better than another, and of whether and how the power of an explanation can be measured. This workshop will bring together philosophers and scientists to make progress on descriptive and normative issues about explanatory power. On the one hand, we aim to shed light on whether there exist inference patterns that are perceived as more explanatory. On the other hand, we aim to understand how explanatory power relates to rational degree of belief, confirmation, and causal strength. Finally, we hope to clarify whether one can understand explanatory power independently of any commitment to a particular account of explanation.


- Matteo Colombo (Tilburg University)
- Vincenzo Crupi (University of Turin)
- Laura Franklin-Hall (New York University)
- Tania Lombrozo (University of California, Berkeley)
- Raphael van Riel (University of Duisburg-Essen)


We invite the submission of abstracts (up to 1000 words) for contributed talks, to be emailed at by 1 November 2017. We especially welcome abstracts that relate explanatory power to inferentialist or Bayesian views on explanation, broadly construed. Applicants will be notified by 15 December 2017.


The workshop is organized by Marcel Weber (University of Geneva), Lorenzo Casini (University of Geneva & MCMP), Stephan Hartmann (MCMP, LMU), and Reuben Stern (MCMP, LMU) with the generous support of the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, and the Fondation Gretler.


For any query on the workshop or the project, email

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