Translator Disclaimer
1 July 2007 Revisiting Chamberlin: Multiple Working Hypotheses for the 21st Century
Author Affiliations +
Abstract
The method of multiple working hypotheses, developed by the 19th-century geologist T. C. Chamberlin, is an important philosophical contribution to the domain of hypothesis construction in science. Indeed, the concept is particularly pertinent to recent debate over the relative merits of two different statistical paradigms: null hypothesis testing and model selection. The theoretical foundations of model selection are often poorly understood by practitioners of null hypothesis testing, and even many proponents of Chamberlin's method may not fully appreciate its historical basis. We contend that the core of Chamberlin's message, communicated over a century ago, has often been forgotten or misrepresented. Therefore, we revisit his ideas in light of modern developments. The original source has great value to contemporary ecology and many related disciplines, communicating thoughtful consideration of both complexity and causality and providing hard-earned wisdom applicable to this new age of uncertainty.
LOUIS P. ELLIOTT and BARRY W. BROOK "Revisiting Chamberlin: Multiple Working Hypotheses for the 21st Century," BioScience 57(7), (1 July 2007). https://doi.org/10.1641/B570708
JOURNAL ARTICLE
7 PAGES

This article is only available to subscribers.
It is not available for individual sale.
+ SAVE TO MY LIBRARY

SHARE
ARTICLE IMPACT
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS
Get copyright permission
Back to Top