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Introduction

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## Publications

Publications (130)

A.J. Cotnoir has argued that we should distinguish between two notions of proper parthood: outstripped part and non-identical part. Outstripped parthood is an asymmetric relation, but non-identical parthood is not. We argue, first, that the intuitions Cotnoir uses to motivate these notions do not always give the right verdict; and, second, that sys...

This paper offers a logico-algebraic investigation of AGM belief revision based on the logic of paradox ( $$\mathrm {LP}$$ LP ). First, we define a concrete belief revision operator for $$\mathrm {LP}$$ LP , proving that it satisfies a generalised version of the traditional AGM postulates. Moreover, we investigate to what extent the Levi and Harper...

Classical mereology seems unable to characterise the identity conditions of word types. For example, the same letter types ordered differently result in different word types; but mereological fusions of the same letters are identical, regardless of the order of the letters. We show, however, that by combining classical mereology with plural logic o...

According to N. Goodman, the Carnapian notion of similarity is useless in science and without interest for philosophy. In our paper we suggest that, given the current role that the notion of similarity has in managing biomedical big data, this drastic position should be revised, and similarity should be provided a scientifically useful philosophica...

What kind of reference (if any) do terms such as “pencil,” “chair,” “television,” and so on have? On the matter, a debate between directly referential theorists and descriptivist theorists is open. It is largely acknowledged that natural kind terms (such as “water,” “gold,” “tiger,” etc.) are directly referential expressions (cf. Putnam, 1975). Tha...

Graham Priest has recently proposed a solution to the problem of the One and the Many which involves inconsistent objects and a non-transitive identity relation. We show that his solution entails either that the object everything is identical with the object nothing or that they are mutual parts; depending on whether Priest goes for an extensional...

A popular stance amongst philosophers is one according to which, in Lewis’ words, “identity is utterly simple and unproblematic”. Building from Lewis’ famous passage on the matter, we reconstruct, and then criticize, an argument to the conclusion that identities cannot be grounded. With the help of relatively uncontroversial assumption concerning i...

This paper aims to provide a thorough overview of the ongoing debate about whether artifactual kind terms (such as ‘pencil,’ ‘chair,’ ‘television,’ and so on) have a directly referential or descriptivist semantics. Hilary Putnam (1975) originated the mentioned debate by arguing that artifactual kind terms refer directly ‐ as natural kind terms (lik...

In a computational program there can be two kinds of errors: (i) critical errors and (ii) non-critical errors. A critical error stops the program in a global way, which means the error cannot be fixed in the subsequent computation process. A non-critical error partially stops the computation program, and the error can be fixed in the subsequent com...

Per il dialeteismo ci sono contraddizioni vere. Questa concezione filosofica ha assunto una
forma chiara e definita a partire dal lavoro del filosofo e logico Graham Priest – uno dei
suoi padri fondatori, nonché uno dei suoi più strenui difensori. Questo libro intende portare il
dialeteismo all’attenzione di un ampio pubblico, che non sia solo quel...

Intervistati sul valore di questo testo, gli autori hanno dichiarato: «o questa affermazione è falsa, oppure questo è il miglior eserciziario di logica che sia mai stato scritto». Se la loro affermazione vi risulta poco comprensibile, ma avete intenzione di capirci qualcosa di più, questo eserciziario può fare al caso vostro! È uno strumento che in...

When the Necessity of Identity (NI) is combined with Composition as Identity (CAI), the contingency of composition (CC) is at risk. In the extant literature, either NI is seen as the basis for a refutation of CAI or CAI is associated with a theory of modality, such that: either NI is renounced (if counterpart theory is adopted); or CC is renounced...

The pragmatic logic of assertions shows a connection between ignorance and (informal) decidability. In it, we can express pragmatic factual ignorance and first-order ignorance as well as some of their variants. We also show how some pragmatic versions of second-order ignorance and of Rumsfeld-ignorance may be formulated. A specific variant of secon...

Conflicts between our best philosophical theories (BPTs) and our common beliefs are widespread. For example, if eliminativism is our BPT, then our BPT conflicts with common beliefs about the existence of middle-sized composite artifacts. ‘Compatibilism’ is the name usually given to a theoretical attitude, according to which, in the case of a confli...

Can an identity be the proper subject of an explanation? A popular stance, albeit not one often argued for, gives a negative answer to this question. Building from a contentious passage from Jaegwon Kim in this direction, we reconstruct an argument to the conclusion that identities, to the extent in which they are necessary, cannot be explained. Th...

Are identity criteria grounding principles? A prima facie answer to this question is positive. Specifically, two-level identity criteria can be taken as principles related to issues of identity among objects of a given kind compared with objects of a more basic kind. Moreover, they are grounding metaphysical principles of some objects with regard t...

The present paper is devoted to present two pragmatic logics and their corresponding intended interpretations according to which an illocutionary act of (scientific) hypothesis-making is justified by a scintilla of evidence. The paper first introduces a general pragmatic frame for assertions, expanded to hypotheses, AH and a hypothetical pragmatic...

This paper proposes a new dialetheic logic, a Dialetheic Logic with Exclusive Assumptions and Conclusions ((Formula presented.)), including classical logic as a particular case. In (Formula presented.), exclusivity is expressed via the speech acts of assuming and concluding. In the paper we adopt the semantics of the logic of paradox extended with...

Currently, there is not yet a full-fledged philosophical sub-discipline devoted to artifacts. In order to establish such a general philosophical discourse on artifacts, two topics are of special importance: artifact functionality and artifact categorization. Both are central to the question of what artifacts are in general and in particular. This i...

This paper presents a semantical analysis of the Weak Kleene Logics Kw3 and PWK from the tradition of Bochvar and Halldén. These are three-valued logics in which a formula takes the third value if at least one of its components does. The paper establishes two main results: a characterisation result for the relation of logical consequence in PWK –th...

According to the so-called strong variant of Composition as Identity (CAI), the Principle of Indiscernibility of Identicals can be extended to composition, by resorting to broadly Fregean relativizations of cardinality ascriptions. In this paper we analyze various ways in which this relativization could be achieved. According to one broad variety o...

In this paper, we use a 'normality operator' in order to generate Logics of Formal Inconsistency and Logics of Formal Undeterminedness from any subclassical many-valued logic that enjoys a truth-functional semantics. Normality operators express, in any many-valued logic, that a given formula has a classical truth value. In the first part of the pap...

In this paper, we extend the expressive power of the logics K3, LP and FDE with a normality operator, which is able to express whether a formula is assigned a classical truth value or not. We then establish classical recapture theorems for the resulting logics. Finally, we compare the approach via normality operator with the classical collapse appr...

The standard rule of single privative modification replaces privative modifiers by Boolean negation. This rule is valid, for sure, but also simplistic. If an individual a instantiates the privatively modified property (MF) then it is true that a instantiates the property of not being an F, but the rule fails to express the fact that the properties...

The aim of this paper is twofold: First, we present and develop a system of logic for pragmatics including the act of denial. Second, we analyse in our framework the so-called paradox of assertability. We show that it is possible to yield sentences that are not assertable. Moreover, under certain conditions, a symmetric result can be obtained: Ther...

According to the so-called strong variant of Composition as Identity (CAI), the Principle of Indiscernibility of Identicals can be extended to composition, by resorting to broadly Fregean relativizations of cardinality ascriptions. In this paper we analyze various ways in which this relativization could be achieved. According to one broad variety o...

The Knowability Paradox starts from the assumption that every truth is knowable and leads to the paradoxical conclusion that every truth is also actually known. Knowability has been traditionally associated with both contemporary verificationism and intuitionistic logic. We assume that classical modal logic in which the standard paradoxical argumen...

We introduce a new self-reference paradox, the rejectability liar, and we analyse its role in the dialetheic solution of self reference paradoxes.

In this introduction we sketch a short survey on the main issues of negation and m briefly resume the main topics of this special issue.

In To be is to be the object of a possible act of choice (Studia Logica, 96, 289–313, 2010) the authors defended Boolos’ thesis that plural quantification is part of logic. To this purpose, plural quantification was explained in terms of plural reference, and a semantics of plural acts of choice, performed by an ideal team of agents, was introduced...

Following the speech act theory, we take hypotheses and assertions as linguistic acts with different illocutionary forces. We assume that a hypothesis is justified if there is at least a scintilla of evidence for the truth of its propositional content, while an assertion is justified when there is conclusive evidence that its propositional content...

This paper investigates the question of how we manage to single out the natural number structure as the intended interpretation of our arithmetical language. Horsten (2012) submits that the reference of our arithmetical vocabulary is determined by our knowledge of some principles of arithmetic on the one hand, and by our computational abilities on...

This volume brings together recent papers on the logic and semantics of pluralities by leading researchers. Most of them focus on the debate whether pluralities are 'one' or 'many' and whether definite plurals such as the eight students stand for single collective entities (sums, sets) or rather refer plurally to several things at once.

The goal of this paper is to face the problem of classifying cognitive artifacts. We introduce it as a kind of a more general problem, namely the classification of artifacts. Specifically, we analyze R. Heersmink's recent proposal for a cognitive artifacts taxonomy (2013). Starting from some weaknesses of the proposal we formulate some steps toward...

In this paper we present Parconsistent Weak Kleene (PWK), a logic that first appeared in the works of Sören Halldén and Arthur Prior, and we establish a characterization result for PWK-consequence, thus providing necessary and sufficient conditions for B to be a consequence of Γ in PWK.

In Mathematics is megethology (Lewis, Philos Math 1:3–23, 1993) Lewis reconstructs set theory combining mereology with plural quantification. He introduces megethology, a powerful framework in which one can formulate strong assumptions about the size of the universe of individuals. Within this framework, Lewis develops a structuralist class theory,...

We reconsider Dalla Pozza and Garola's pragmatic interpretation of intuitionistic logic regarded as a logic of assertions and their justifications and its relations with classical logic. We recall an extension of this approach to a logic dealing
with assertions and obligations, related by a notion of causal implication developed especially by K. Ra...

In Mathematics is megethology (Lewis (1993). Philosophia Mathematica, 1(1), 3-23) David K. Lewis proposes a structuralist reconstruction of classical set theory based on mereology. In order to formulate suitable hypotheses about the size of the universe of individuals without the help of set-theoretical notions, he uses the device of Boolos’ plural...

According to strong composition as identity (CAI), the logical principles of one-one and plural identity can and should be extended to the relation between a whole and its parts. Otherwise, composition would not be legitimately regarded as an identity relation. In particular, several defenders of strong CAI have attempted to extend Leibniz’s Law to...

We cast doubts on the suggestion, recently made by Graham Priest, that glut theorists may express disagreement with the assertion of \(A\) by denying
\(A\). We show that, if denial is to serve as a means to express disagreement, it must be exclusive, in the sense of being correct only if what is denied is false only. Hence, it can’t be expressed in...

The goal of the paper "Pragmatic and dialogic interpretation of bi-intuitionism. Part I" [3] is to sketch the construction of a syntactic categorical model of the bi-intuitionistic logic of assertions and hypotheses AH, axiomatized in a sequent calculus AH-G1, and to show that such a model has a chirality-like structure inspired by the notion of di...

Logical orthodoxy has it that classical first-order logic, or some extension thereof, provides the right extension of the logical consequence relation. However, together with naïve but intuitive principles about semantic notions such as truth, denotation, satisfaction, and possibly validity and other naïve logical properties, classical logic quickl...

In this paper we present a modal extension L P ,K of the pragmatic language L P introduced by Dalla Pozza and Garola (1995). The descriptive part of L P ,K is the fusion of two modal languages, L and LK , endowed with two independent boxes, and K, interpreted as " it is proved that " and " it is known that ". We start introducing the language and d...

Dialetheism holds the thesis that certain sentences are dialetheias, i.e. both true and false, and devises several strategies for avoiding trivialism, the (classical) consequence that all sentences are true. Two such strategies are aimed at invalidating one of the most direct arguments for trivialism, viz. Curry's Paradox: a proof that you will win...

This special issue collects together nine new essays on logical consequence: the relation obtaining between the premises and the conclusion of a logically valid argument. The present paper is a partial, and opinionated, introduction to the contemporary debate on the topic. We focus on two influential accounts of consequence, the model-theoretic and...

According to classical logic, the acceptance of a dialetheia, a proposition that is both true and false, entails trivialism the output that every sentence is true. One way to accept dialetheias but avoid trivialism is to reject the general validity of classical logic, which is the view held by dialetheists, supporters of the existence of dialetheia...

We consider a “polarized” version of bi-intuitionistic logic [5, 2, 6, 4] as a logic of assertions and hypotheses and show that it supports a “rich proof theory” and an interesting categorical interpretation, unlike the standard approach of C. Rauszer’s Heyting-Brouwer logic [28, 29], whose categorical models are all partial orders by Crolard’s the...

An important aspect of the alleged logical inadequacy of identity criteria for artifact kinds is the lack of transitivity. This formal problem can be eliminated through the use of a tool allowing for the gradual approximation of inadequate but normally adopted identity criteria. Although this does not solve the problem of so-called ontological resp...

The general question (G) How do we categorize artifacts? can be subject to three different readings: an ontological, an epistemic and a semantic one. According to the ontological reading, asking (G) is equivalent to asking in virtue of what properties, if any, a certain artifact is an instance of some artifact kind: (O) What is it for an artifact a...

The Knowability Paradox is a logical argument showing that if all truths are knowable in principle, then all truths are, in fact, known. Many strategies have been suggested in order to avoid the paradoxical conclusion. A family of solutions –ncalled logical revision – has been proposed to solve the paradox, revising the logic underneath, with an in...

Aim of the paper is to present a new logic of technical malfunction. The need for this logic is motivated by a simple-sounding philosophical question: Is a malfunctioning corkscrew, which fails to uncork bottles, nonetheless a corkscrew? Or in general terms, is a malfunctioning F, which fails to do what Fs do, nonetheless an F? We argue that ‘malfu...

Aim of the paper is to make some steps towards a formal characterization of identity criteria. First of all, we analyse some logical requirements identity criteria are supposed to satisfy and observe that some commonly used identity criteria fail to meet some of them. We focus in particular on the equivalence requirement. We consider then the propo...

Identity criteria
are used to confer ontological respectability: Only entities with clearly determined identity criteria are ontologically acceptable. From a logical point of view, identity criteria should mirror the identity relation in being reflexive, symmetrical, and transitive. However, this logical constraint is only rarely met. More precisel...

In this paper, we give formalisations of two engineering concepts of technical function and present in more general terms the project of supporting functional description translation by ontological analysis. The formalisations are given within the foundational dolce ontology and the concepts formalised are as follows: (1) the function as defined in...

This paper presents a formalization of the notion of function as operation on flows as advanced in the Functional Basis approach of Stone and Wood. We first analyze the modeling of functions in this approach and identify the notions that are ontological significant for their formalization within the foundational ontology DOLCE. Then, we build the l...

The Knowability Paradox is a logical argument to the effect that, if there are truths not actually known, then there are unknowable truths. Recently, Alexander Paseau and Bernard Linsky have independently suggested a possible way to counter this argument by typing knowledge. In this article, we argue against their proposal that if one abstracts fro...

In this paper we disambiguate the design stance as proposed by Daniel C. Dennett, focusing on its application to technical artefacts. Analysing Dennett's work and developing his approach towards interpreting entities, we show that there are two ways of spelling out the design stance, one that presuppose also adopting Dennett's intentional stance fo...

In “Mathematics is megethology,” Lewis reconstructs set theory using mereology and plural quantification (MPQ). In his recontruction he assumes from the beginning that there is an infinite plurality of atoms, whose size is equivalent to that of the set theoretical universe. Since this assumption is far beyond the basic axioms of mereology, it might...

The topic of this paper is the notion of technical (as opposed to biological) malfunction. It is shown how to form the property being a malfunctioning F from the property F and the property modifier malfunctioning (a mapping taking a property to a property). We present two interpretations of malfunctioning. Both interpretations agree that a malfunc...

In this paper we argue that the challenge of the formalization of functions not merely consists of analyzing and formalizing yet another concept; the challenge may also consist of formalizing a concept that is to be taken as a family resemblance concept in the Wittgensteinian sense. We focus on engineering for giving this argument and indicate brie...

According to [5], the best way to formalize the notion of technical function is to treat such a notion as a family resemblance concept. A family resemblance concept (the term is due to L. Wittgenstein) is characterized and understood in terms of a network of similarity relations that link the various members of the class. Essential to an analysis o...

Aim of the paper is to revise Boolos’ reinterpretation of second-order monadic logic in terms of plural quantification ([4], [5]) and expand it to full second order logic. Introducing the idealization of plural acts of choice, performed by
a suitable team of agents, we will develop a notion of plural reference. Plural quantification will be then ex...

Sometimes mereologists have problems with counting. We often don't want to count the parts of maximally connected objects as full-fledged objects themselves, and we don't want to count discontinuous objects as parts of further, full-fledged objects. But whatever one takes “full-fledged object” to mean, the axioms and theorems of classical, extensio...

In this paper we consider the emerging position in metaphysics that artifact functions characterize real kinds of artifacts. We analyze how it can circumvent an objection by David Wiggins (Sameness and substance renewed, 2001, 87) and then argue that this position, in comparison to expert judgments, amounts to an interesting fine-grained metaphysic...

In [Parts of classes. Oxford: Basil Blackwell (1991; Zbl 0900.03061)] and [“Mathematics is megethology”, Philos. Math., III. Ser. 1, No. 1, 3–23 (1993)], D. Lewis defends both the innocence of plural quantification and of mereology. However, he himself claims that the innocence of mereology is different from that of plural reference, where referenc...

In this paper we present a formal characterization of the engineering concepts of behavior and function of technical artifacts. We capture the meanings that engineers attach to these concepts by formalizing, within the formal ontology DOLCE, the five meanings of artifact behavior and the two meanings of function that Chandrasekaran and Josephson id...

Relativists maintain that identity is always relative to a general term (RI). According to them, the notion of absolute identity has to be abandoned and replaced by a multiplicity of relative identity relations for which Leibniz's Law does not hold. For relativists RI is at least as good as the Fregean cardinality thesis (FC), which contends that a...

Consider the following argument: (Premise 1) If a librarian is a classifier and (Premise 2) a librarian classifies (among the other things) the documents of a library, and (Premise 3) to classify documents is equivalent to classifying the objects of a knowledge base, but (Premise 4) to classify the objects of a knowledge base is equivalent to produ...

From a logical point of view, identity criteria should mirror the identity relation in being reflexive, symmetrical, and transitive. However, the relation representing the identity condition fails to be transitive in many cases. We consider the proposals given so far to give logical adequacy to inadequate identity conditions. We focus on the most r...

Identity criteria are used to confer ontological respectability: Only entities with clearly determined identity criteria are ontologically acceptable. From a logical point of view, identity criteria should mirror the identity relation in being reflexive, symmetrical, and transitive. However, this logical constraint is only rarely met. More precisel...

The goal of the paper is to analyse some specific features of a very central concept for top-level ontologies for information
systems: i.e. the concept of artefact. Specifically, we analyse the relation to be a copy of that is strongly linked to the notion of artefact and—as we will demonstrate—could be useful to distinguish artefacts from objects...

The Knowability Paradox is a logical argument that, starting from the plainly innocent assumption that every true proposition is knowable, reaches the strong conclusion that every true proposition is known; i.e. if there are unknown truths, there are unknowable truths. The paradox has been considered a problem for every theory assuming the Knowabil...

Counterfeits and copies are central notions in e-commerce. But an adequate ontological characterization of them is not still available. This paper tries to fill the gap. It offers an ontological analysis of the notion of counterfeit as opposed to that of copy. While it seems clear that there cannot be a copy without an original, for instance, of a...

Nicholas Rescher, in The Limits of Science (1984), argued that: «perfected science is a mirage; complete knowledge a chimera» . He reached the above conclusion from a logical argument known as Fitch’s Paradox of Knowability. The argument, starting from the assumption that every truth is knowable, proves that every truth is also actually known and,...

P.T. Geach has maintained (see, e.g., Geach (1967/1968)) that identity (as well as dissimilarity) is always relative to a general term. According to him, the notion of absolute
identity has to be abandoned and replaced by a multiplicity of relative identity relations for which Leibniz’s Law – which
says that if two objects are identical they have t...

## Projects

Project (1)

This project explores the view that definite plurals like 'the students' refer to several individuals at once, rather than referring to a single plurality, sum, or set. In particular, it explores support from natural language for that view.