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Deterministic Chance

Glynn, L; (2010) Deterministic Chance. The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science , 61 (1) pp. 51-80. 10.1093/bjps/axp020. Green open access

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Abstract

I argue that there are non-trivial objective chances (that is, objective chances other than 0 and 1) even in deterministic worlds. The argument is straightforward. I observe that there are probabilistic special scientific laws even in deterministic worlds. These laws project non-trivial probabilities for the events that they concern. And these probabilities play the chance role and so should be regarded as chances as opposed, for example, to epistemic probabilities or credences. The supposition of non-trivial deterministic chances might seem to land us in contradiction. The fundamental laws of deterministic worlds project trivial probabilities for the very same events that are assigned non-trivial probabilities by the special scientific laws. I argue that any appearance of tension is dissolved by recognition of the level-relativity of chances. There is therefore no obstacle to accepting non-trivial chance-role-playing deterministic probabilities as genuine chances.

Type: Article
Title: Deterministic Chance
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/bjps/axp020
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjps/axp020
Language: English
Additional information: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science following peer review. The version of record, Glynn, L; (2010) Deterministic Chance. The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 61 (1) pp. 51-80, is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjps/axp020.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1406964
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