Inductive Logic

induction (in logic)

induction, in logic, a form of argument in which the premises give grounds for the conclusion but do not necessitate it. Induction is contrasted with deduction, in which true premises do necessitate the conclusion. An important form of induction is the process of reasoning from the particular to the general. Francis Bacon in his Novum Organum (1620) elucidated the first formal theory of inductive logic, which he proposed as a logic of scientific discovery, as opposed to deductive logic, the logic of argumentation. Both processes, however, are used constantly in research. By observation of events (induction) and from principles already known (deduction), new hypotheses are formulated; the hypotheses are tested by applications; as the results of the tests satisfy the conditions of the hypotheses, laws are arrived at—by induction; from these laws future results may be determined by deduction. David Hume has influenced 20th-century philosophers of science who have focused on the question of how to assess the strength of different kinds of inductive argument (see Nelson Goodman; Sir Karl Raimund Popper). For a classic account of inductive arguments see J. S. Mill, System of Logic (1843).

See also R. Swinburne, ed., The Justification of Induction (1974); J. Cohen, An Introduction to the Philosophy of Induction and Probability (1989).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

Foundations of Inductive Logic
Roy Harrod.
Harcourt Brace, 1957
FREE! Logic, Deductive and Inductive
John Grier Hibben.
Charles Scribner's Sons, 1905
Challenge and Response: Justification in Ethics
Carl Wellman.
Southern Illinois University Press, 1971
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 2 "Induction"
The Rationality of Induction
D. C. Stove.
Clarendon Press, 1986
Rational Induction: An Analysis of the Method of Science and Philosophy
Homer H. Dubs.
The University of Chicago Press, 1930
Inductive Probability
John Patrick Day.
Humanities Press, 1961
Probability and Induction
William Kneale.
Clarendon Press, 1949
Induction: Some Current Issues
Henry E. Kyburg Jr.; Ernest Nagel; Wesleyan Conference on Induction.
Wesleyan University Press, 1963
Definition and Induction: A Historical and Comparative Study
Kisor Kumar Chakrabarti.
University of Hawaii Press, 1995
Hume's Problem: Induction and the Justification of Belief
Colin Howson.
Clarendon Press, 2000
The Divine Lawmaker: Lectures on Induction, Laws of Nature, and the Existence of God
John Foster.
Clarendon Press, 2004
The New Organon
Lisa Jardine; Michael Silverthorne; Francis Bacon.
Cambridge University Press, 2000
The Evolution of Reason: Logic as a Branch of Biology
William S. Cooper.
Cambridge University Press, 2001
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