Causality and Explanation

Project leader:
Prof. Dr. Gerhard Schurz (Düsseldorf)

Postdoctoral Fellow:
Dr. Alexander Gebharter (Düsseldorf)


In this subproject intends to contribute to the development of a general theory of causality which is based on interventionist and graph-theoretic theories of causality, based on existing accounts in the literature. This theory should have verifiable empirical content and, hence,  genuine testing possibilities.

Within the work on this general goal, the project will focus on a factor-analysis as method of abducing causal graphs which explain statistical correlations by hidden common causes variables.  Moreover, the approach shall be supported by a theory of causal possibility knowledge that is based on causal independence-hypotheses.

The theory of causality shall be applied to the concept of explanation in a way which intends to connect the causal view of explanation, the view of explanation as unification and the expectation view of explanation.

The results shall be made gainful for the analysis of ceteris paribus laws (subproject “Ceteris-paribus Laws and Causality”) and dispositions (subproject “Dispositions and Causality).