causal complexity
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2021 ◽  
Vol 137 ◽  
pp. 39-45
Tiffany Hui-Kuang Yu ◽  
Kun-Huang Huarng ◽  
Duen-Huang Huang

Synthese ◽  
2021 ◽  
Andrea Roselli ◽  
Christopher Austin

AbstractPowers are properties defined by what they do. The focus of the large majority of the powers literature has been mainly put on explicating the (multifaceted) results of the production of a power in certain (multifaceted) initial conditions: but all this causal complexity is bound to be—and, in fact, it has proved to be—quite difficult to handle. In this paper we take a different approach by focusing on the very activity of producing those multifaceted manifestations themselves. In this paper, we propose an original account of what the essence of a power consists in which stems from a radical reconceptualisation of power-causation according to which counterfactuals are to be explained away by powers, and not vice-versa. We call this approach the dynamical operator account of powers. According to this account, the causal role of powers consists in their ensuring that the ontological transition from a stimulus S to a manifestation M happens. Powers thus have a dynamical essence which consists in the fundamental activity of generating the counterfactuals typically associated with them. We show that if one conceptualises this functional activity as the metaphysical fulcrum around which counterfactual-based causation revolves, one is granted not only an improved methodology to individuate powers but also a better understanding of their knowability, modality and directedness.

2021 ◽  
pp. 1-11
Asmeret Naugle ◽  
Stephen Verzi ◽  
Kiran Lakkaraju ◽  
Laura Swiler ◽  
Christina Warrender ◽  

2021 ◽  
pp. 205-233
James Wilson

This chapter examines the idea of contagion—of risk magnification and modulation through networks. The chapter examines three case studies, each of which raises different questions about the interplay of causal complexity, performativity, and policymaking: vaccination policy, drug resistant infections, and disease eradication. In vaccination policy, achieving herd immunity is often crucial, but attempts to do this are heavily dependent on public trust. Drug resistant infections arise, among other causes, through the inevitable impact of natural selection, and so require a shift towards an ecological perspective on disease. Finally, the possibility of disease eradication poses important questions about when and how to ensure that susceptible health threats are systematically and permanently removed from the environment.

2021 ◽  
Vol ahead-of-print (ahead-of-print) ◽  
Zhixiu Wang ◽  
Junying Liu ◽  
Xinya Guan

PurposeAlthough the global construction industry has made great contributions to economic development, industry corruption is a challenge for governments all over the world. This paper aims to investigate the causal complexity of organizational corruption by exploring the configuration effect of multiple induced conditions of corruption in the construction sector.Design/methodology/approachThis study is focused on bribery, a specific form of corrupt behavior through a scenario-based survey role-playing game in which participants encounter bribery. A total of 400 Chinese construction sector participants were randomly recruited to complete this survey.FindingsCompared with studies that have identified a number of factors associated with corruption in the construction sector, this study found asymmetry and complexity in the causality of organizational corruption. That is, when a variable causing corruption changes from one condition to its opposite – for example, from fierce to mild competition – the degree of corruption is not necessarily reduced as one may expect.Practical implicationsAnti-corruption measures should not rely solely on the net effects of discrete conditions and the interactions between multiple factors should not be ignored. In other words, anti-corruption strategies should not be implemented in isolation of their context, and pairing control measures with configurations is critical in controlling corruption. Finally, multiple configuration paths should be reconsidered when considering the degree of corruption reduction.Originality/valueThis study proposes a comprehensive analysis framework for addressing organizational corruption in the construction sector by investigating configuration effects of multiple induced conditions and offers a useful method for addressing corruption.

2021 ◽  
pp. 65-74
Chunyun Li

This chapter examines causal complexity. The determinants of improvement in working conditions in supplier factories in global supply chains are complex. The complexity arises from the interaction between heterogeneous actors (companies, auditing firms, suppliers) following a multiplicity of practices, combined with the effect of local institutional conditions and industry and workplace context. Along with the general lack of transparency in private regulation, this combination of causal factors leads to uncertainty with respect to cause–effect relationships. The central assumption of the private regulation model is that if standards are set by codes of conduct (whether based on international conventions or local laws), and if supplier factories comply with the codes, sweatshop conditions will be avoided and improvements will be made in the lives of workers in global supply chains. But this assumption may not be warranted; buyers and brands may not have the power to force suppliers to compel compliance. And within the businesses of most global buyers and retailers, sourcing may not be sufficiently well integrated with compliance, so the incentive effects of rewarding good factories that are making improvements in compliance are not realized in practice — even though such incentives are the very basis for the model of private regulation of first-tier supplier factories.

2021 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
María Ferreira Ruiz ◽  
Jon Umerez

In biology and philosophy of biology, discussing the notion of interaction leads to an examination of interactionism, which is, broadly speaking, the view that rejects gene-centrism and gene determinism and instead emphasizes the fact that traits of organisms are always the result of genes and environments. It has long been asserted that the nature-nurture problem requires an interactionist solution of sorts, the so-called interactionist consensus. This consensus, however, has been deemed insufficient and challenged by several authors triggering an extension of the debate among contestants and defenders. Unfortunately, part of the problem is that the views on causation that would ground claims about interactionism are not always made explicit in this debate, which renders those views somewhat complicated to assess. Moreover, it seems to be assumed that causal complexity excludes the possibility of characterizing, distinguishing, or comparing among causal contributions. By turning to a detailed survey of the origin of the debate and to some developments in the philosophy of causation, we will contend that this view is unwarranted, and that much of the debate around interactionism is based on the drawing of this (wrong) conclusion. We also examine implications of this analysis for the project to develop a framework based on the notion of inter-identities.

2021 ◽  
Beau Sievers ◽  
Evan DeFilippis

Yarkoni’s argument risks skepticism about the very possibility of social science: If social phenomena are too causally complex, normal scientific methods could not possibly untangle them. We argue that the problem of causal complexity is best approached at the level of scientific communities and institutions, not the modeling practices of individual scientists.

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