Can Multiple Realisation be Explained?

Alexander Franklin

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Abstract

Multiple realisation prompts the question: how is it that multiple systems all exhibit the same phenomena despite their different underlying properties? In this paper I develop a framework for addressing that question and argue that multiple realisation can be reductively explained. I illustrate this position by applying the framework to a simple example – the multiple realisation of electrical conductivity. I defend my account by addressing potential objections: contra (e.g.) Polger and Shapiro (2016), Batterman (2018), and Sober (1999), I claim that multiple realisation is commonplace, that it can be reductively explained, but that it requires a sui generis reductive explanatory strategy.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPhilosophy
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sep 2020

Bibliographical note

The research for this paper has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, grant agreement No 771509.

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