On Criteria for Formal Theory Building: Applying Logic and Automated Reasoning Tools to the Social Sciences

Jaap Kamps, University of Amsterdam

This paper provides practical operationalizations of criteria for evaluating scientific theories, such as the consistency and falsifiability of theories and the soundness of inferences, that take into account definitions. The precise formulation of these criteria is tailored to the use of automated theorem provers and automated model generators--generic tools from the field of automated reasoning. The use of these criteria is illustrated by applying them to a first order logic representation of a classic organization theory, Thompson’s Organizations in Action.

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