Acta Biotheoretica

, Volume 57, Issue 1, pp 33–49

Species as a Process

Regular Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10441-008-9057-6

Cite this article as:
Rieppel, O. Acta Biotheor (2009) 57: 33. doi:10.1007/s10441-008-9057-6


Species are generally considered to be the basic units of evolution, and hence to constitute spatio-temporally bounded entities. In addition, it has been argued that species also instantiate a natural kind. Evolution is fundamentally about change. The question then is how species can remain the same through evolutionary change. Proponents of the species qua individuals thesis individuate species through their unique evolutionary origin. Individuals, or spatio-temporally located particulars in general, can be bodies, objects, events, or processes, or a combination of these. It is here argued that species are best understood as open or closed, causally integrated processual systems that also instantiate an historically conditioned homeostatic property cluster natural kind.



Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeologyThe Field MuseumChicagoUSA