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Imprecision

Nicholas Rescher ()
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Nicholas Rescher: Department of Philosophy, University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh PA 15260, U.S.A., http://www.pitt.edu/~rescher/

Review of Economics & Finance, 2017, vol. 7, pages 37-49

Abstract: This paper surveys the various modes of imprecision and seeks to clarify the concept of imprecision, to account for the pervasiveness of the phenomena, and to explain why we have to come to terms with it throughout our cognitive affairs. The structure of these deliberations will be as follows: Having set the stage for considering imprecision (in section 1), it will briefly elaborate upon each of them (in section 2). Next comes a discussion of two of the main ramifications of imprecision, namely vagueness (section 3) and oversimplification (section 4). There follows (in section 5) a consideration of why imprecision is inevitable in our cognitive dealings, and why this feature of investigation actually admits of an evolutionary explanation. The paper concludes (in section 6) with a retrospective glance at the overall situation from a philosophical point of view. Overall, the discussion is of an analytical cast, seeking to clarify the conceptual nature and operational bearing of imprecision within the cognitive scheme of things.

Keywords: Cognitive limits; Detail; Exactness; Imprecision; Knowledge; Oversimplification; Precision; Error; Cost-effectiveness (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A10 A12 B40 B50 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
Note: The author is a Distinguished University Professor of Philosophy.
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