Mathematical Explanation In Biology
Explanation In Biology: An Enquiry Into The Diversity Of Explanatory Patterns In The Life Sciences
Biology has proved to be a rich source of examples in which mathematics plays a role in explaining some physical phenomena. In this paper, two examples from evolutionary biology, one involving periodical cicadas and one involving bee honeycomb, are examined in detail. I discuss the use of such examples to defend platonism about mathematical objects, and then go on to distinguish several different varieties of mathematical explanation in biology. I also connect these discussions to issues concerning generality in biological explanation, and to the question of how to pick out which mathematical properties are explanatorily relevant.
Mathematical explanation, Biology, Indispensability, Optimization
P.-A. Braillard And C. Malaterre
Alan Richard Baker.
"Mathematical Explanation In Biology".
Explanation In Biology: An Enquiry Into The Diversity Of Explanatory Patterns In The Life Sciences.