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The Error Statistical Philosophy

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Long-standing debates regarding the roles and justification of statistical methods revolve around implicit assumptions about the nature of scientific inference and the roles of probability in learning about the world in the face of errors and uncertainties. Such assumptions are philosophical, and a central goal for a philosopher of statistics is to make them explicit. My discussion will consider a philosophy of science that may be associated with statistical methods based on frequentist error probabilities (“error statistical” methods). Such an error statistical philosophy, if it is to be adequate, should tell us (a) how to interpret, evaluate, and justify uses of the formal tools, as well as (b) how to avoid chronic fallacies and paradoxical examples that are (apparently) licensed by them.

This talk is part of the MRC Biostatistics Unit Seminars series.

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