Acta Biotheoretica

, Volume 39, Issue 2, pp 141–149 | Cite as

How-possibly explanations in biology

  • David B. Resnik


Biologists in many different fields of research give how-possibly explanations of the phenomena they study. Although such explanations lack empirical support, and might be regarded by some as “unscientific,” they play an important heuristic role in biology by helping biologists develop theories and concepts and suggesting new areas of research. How-possibly explanations serve as a useful framework for conducting research in the absence of adequate empiri cal data, and they can even become how-actually explanations if they gain enough empirical support.


Empirical Support Heuristic Role Important Heuristic 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • David B. Resnik
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of WyomingLaramieU.S.A.

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