MTL PhilSci Net | Conférence “Reductionism, Constructionism and Explanation. The Case of Superconductivity” – Sorin Bangu, University of Bergen

8 septembre / September 8th, 3:30 – 5:30 pm
Sorin Bangu, University of Bergen (Norway)
“Reductionism, Constructionism and Explanation. The Case of Superconductivity”
Philosophy seminar room #927, 9th floor, Leacock building, McGill University (PLAN/MAP). Light refreshments will be served at 3:00 pm at Leacock 908.
It is perhaps old news that understanding-generating explanations of phenomena in biology, geology, economics, etc. are not, and cannot be, formulated in terms of (or in some sense reduced to) the basic constituents of reality, i.e., electrons, quarks, and other fundamental particles. These explanations are thus ‘higher-level’. While some argue that chemistry should also be on this list, it is surely controversial whether physics itself is (or could be) part of this group. This talk explores this possibility, namely that the explanation of superconductive properties of certain materials is an illustration of this kind of explanation.