Inference to the Best Explanation

Part of the Law, Governance and Technology Series book series (LGTS, volume 23)


Chapter  2 studies the problem of how to model evidential reasoning of the most common kind in criminal trials using the tools presented in Chap.  1. Chapter  2 analyzes two case studies of murder trials in which the evidential reasoning employed is based on inference to the best explanation and involves motive evidence. The chapter uses argument diagramming tools, argumentation schemes, and explanatory story-based scripts to model the evidential structure of the use of inference to the best explanation in both cases. Both cases are from textbooks used to teach students how to grasp the basics of pro-contra argumentation used in evidential reasoning in a criminal trial of a highly typical sort. The chapter offers the beginnings of a solution to the technical problem of combining argument and explanation in such cases, pointing the way forward to Chap.  3, where a method of evaluating explanations is built up.


Good Explanation Plausible Reasoning Argumentation Scheme Evidential Reasoning Hybrid Theory 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric (CRRAR)University of WindsorWindsorCanada

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