Scientific representation in an interaction-based setting

Nicolas Clerbout

Instituto de Filosofía
Convenio de Desempeño Humanidades, Artes y Ciencias Sociales
Univertsidad de Valparaíso

4 y 5 de diciembre de 2014

Recent works on the notion of scientific representation can broadly be classified as giving priority either to representation-as-relation or to representing-as-activity. We argue that neither perspective gave the significance it deserves to the communicational, interactional dimension of representation – not even the second one even though it does insist on agency.

To be more specific, we argue that accounting for this dimension is actually so relevant that it motivates a certain shift of perspective, where representation is in a way deposed of its primitive character by expression2 and interaction (communication); and where representing is not only the product of the activity and intention of a sole agent, but instead thought in terms of interaction.

As a conclusion and proposal for future work, we argue that the conceptual and formal framework of the dialogical approach3 – which has mainly been applied to mathematical logic – provides the perspective we need to meet our requirements. We describe the main points of the foreseen approach, the benefits we can expect from it and the challenges one is likely to encounter on this path.