© 1993

Optimum Inductive Methods

A Study in Inductive Probability, Bayesian Statistics, and Verisimilitude


Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 232)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Introduction

    1. Roberto Festa
      Pages 1-9
  3. Inductive Probabilities, Bayesian Statistics, and Verisimilitude

  4. De Finetti’s Theorem, GC-Systems, and Dirichlet Distributions

  5. Verisimilitude, Disorder, and Optimum Prior Probabilities

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 154-194

About this book


This book deals with a basic problem arising within the Bayesian approach 1 to scientific methodology, namely the choice of prior probabilities. The problem will be considered with special reference to some inference methods used within Bayesian statistics (BS) and the so-called theory of inductive 2 probabilities (T/P). In this study an important role will be played by the assumption - defended by Sir Karl Popper and the supporters of the current verisimilitude theory (VT) - that the cognitive goal of science is the achievement of a high degree of truthlikeness or verisimilitude. A more detailed outline of the issues and objectives of the book is given in Section 1. In Section 2 the historical background of the Bayesian approach and the verisimilitude theory is briefly illustrated. In Section 3, the methods used in TIP and BS for making multinomial inference~ are considered and some conceptual relationships between TIP and BS are pointed out. In Section 4 the main lines of a new approach to the problem of the choice of prior probabilities are illustrated. Lastly, in Section 5 >the structure of the book is described and a first explanation of some technical terms is provided.


argue bayesian statistics knowledge logic philosophy of science probability science statistics

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Fellow of the Department of Philosophy of ScienceUniversity of GroningenThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Optimum Inductive Methods
  • Book Subtitle A Study in Inductive Probability, Bayesian Statistics, and Verisimilitude
  • Authors R. Festa
  • Series Title Synthese Library
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1993
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-0-7923-2460-7
  • Softcover ISBN 978-90-481-4318-4
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-015-8131-8
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XIV, 194
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Logic
    Statistics, general
    Philosophy of Science
  • Buy this book on publisher's site