Particle Physics

Massimi, M. (2018) Perspectival Modeling. Philosophy of Science, 85(3), 335-359

The goal of this article is to address the problem of inconsistent models, and the challenge it poses for perspectivism. I analyse the argument, draw attention to some hidden premises behind it, and deflate them. Then I introduce the notion of perspectival models as a distinctive class of modeling practices, whose primary function is exploratory. I illustrate perspectival modeling with two examples taken from contemporary high-energy physics at LHC, CERN, which are designed to show how a plurality of seemingly incompatible models (suitably understood) is methodologically crucial to advance the realist quest in cutting-edge areas of scientific inquiry.

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McCoy, C.D. and Massimi, M. (2017) Simplified Models: a New Perspective on Models as Mediators. European Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 8(1), 99-123 

We introduce a novel point of view on the “models as mediators” frame- work in order to emphasize certain important epistemological questions about models in science which have so far been little investigated. To illustrate how this perspective can help answer these kinds of questions, we explore the use of simplified models in high energy physics research beyond the Standard Model. We show in detail how the construction of simplified models is grounded in the need to mitigate pressing epistemic problems concerning the uncertainty inherent in the present theoretical and experimental contexts.

 doi: 10.1007/s13194-017-0178-0