Single Idea 6757

[catalogued under 14. Science / A. Basis of Science / 4. Prediction]

Full Idea

Explanation is prediction after the event and prediction is explanation before the event.

Gist of Idea

Explanation predicts after the event; prediction explains before the event


Alexander Bird (Philosophy of Science [1998], Ch.2)

Book Reference

Bird,Alexander: 'Philosophy of Science' [UCL Press 2000], p.72

A Reaction

A nice slogan, fitting Hempel's 'covering law' view of explanation. It doesn't seem quite right, because explanations and predictions are couched in very different language. Prediction implies an explanation; explanation implies a prediction.