more from Peter Lipton

Single Idea 16819

[catalogued under 14. Science / D. Explanation / 3. Best Explanation / a. Best explanation]

Full Idea

According to Inference to the Best Explanation we do not infer the best actual explanation; rather we infer that the best of the available potential explanations is an actual explanation.

Gist of Idea

IBE is inferring that the best potential explanation is the actual explanation


Peter Lipton (Inference to the Best Explanation (2nd) [2004], 04 'Spelling')

Book Reference

Lipton,Peter: 'Inference to the Best Explanation (2nd ed)' [Routledge 2004], p.58

A Reaction

Clearly to say that you should just accept the best available explanation is asking for trouble, if all the available explanations are absurd. But what are the criteria for saying the best one is the actual one?