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Correlational analysis of complex systems

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It is suggested that science is in the middle of an epistemological crisis brought about by the introduction of computational methods, in particular simulations, and that complexity theory is central to the resolution of this crisis. By consideration of previous epistemic crises it appears that a new epistemic criterion is required for evaluation of computer simulations, and a related new form of reasoning may be expected to appear. A concept of universality is proposed as an appropriate epistemic criterion, and a discussion of correlative reason offers support for this proposal. Connections are made to an epistemological claim of J.R. Royce based on factor analytic studies of human cognition.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Center for Natural and Human Sciences, Athabasca University, 1 University Drive, Athabasca, AB, Canada T9S 3A3

Publication date: 1999-03-01

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