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Durham Emergence Project

Fellowship


How does changing from a levels-based framework to one based on scale affect central questions about strong emergence?


Participants

Patrick McGivern


Project Description

The overarching research question for this project is:

How does changing from a levels based framework to one based on scale affect central questions about strong emergence?

These central questions are:

- How should strong emergence be defined within a scales-based framework?

- How should downward causation be characterized, given a scales-based framework?

- How does a shift to a scales-based framework affect arguments against strong emergence – in particular, those based on principles of causal closure at some level?

More specific research questions are described below, after the background section. The motivation for this research is the thought that a framework based on scale is better suited to characterizing emergence in the context of empirical science than one based on levels.