Rani Lill Anjum

Rani Lill Anjum
Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) · Department of Economics and Resource Management (IØR)

PhD

About

75
Publications
20,852
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785
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Introduction
I am philosopher at NMBU, where I lead CauseHealth and the Centre for Applied Philosophy of Science together with Elena Rocca. I work on philosophy of medicine and science.

Publications

Publications (75)
Article
Full-text available
A new approach is proposed for assessing causality in pharmacovigilance. The Dx3 approach is designed to qualitatively evaluate three types of dispositions when assessing whether a particular medicine has or could have caused a certain adverse event. These are: the drug disposition; the pre-disposition of the patient taking the drug (vulnerability)...
Chapter
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In this chapter we discuss the idea of complexity. While this concept is widely used, its meaning and interpretation usually remain implicit. We show that a mereological view, in which complexity is seen as composition of multiple unchanged parts, motivates an investigation that starts from the separation of causal factors, and their investigation...
Chapter
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This book is intended as an intellectual resource for clinicians and healthcare professionals who are interested in digging deeper into the philosophical foundations of their daily practice. It is a tool for understanding some of the philosophical motivations and rationality behind the way medicine and healthcare are studied, evaluated and practice...
Chapter
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From the philosophical perspective presented in the first part of this book, together with the clinical application of this framework in the second part, it follows that we must change the way we approach causal evidence of health and illness conceptually, methodologically and practically. This has some practical consequences for the clinical encou...
Chapter
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This chapter offers a philosophical diagnosis of the challenges that medicine is facing, regarding medically unexplained symptoms and complex illnesses. We propose that a crucial problem comes from applying a Humean regularity theory of causality, in which a cause is understood as something that always provokes the same effect under ideal condition...
Chapter
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In this chapter we argue that a genuine revision of the norms and practices in clinical work needs to start from a revision of the way we think about the world, and in particular the way we think about the most foundational concepts, such as causality. We present the dispositionalist theory of causality and explain why this theory is better suited...
Chapter
Regularity is often taken as the starting point of our causal knowledge. But pure constant conjunctions are not what science finds. Even in randomised controlled trials, we do not discover a regular frequency of occurrence of some effect. The dispositionalist is able to explain the evidence of science in terms of the ontology of real causal powers...
Article
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This ‘Erice Call for Change’ is a report from a group of experts, patients and patient representatives who met in Erice in September 2019 following previous similar meetings after the original Erice Declaration (1996). The aim of the meeting was to discuss the challenge of causal complexity and individual variation in modern healthcare. The group’s...
Article
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Since the introduction of evidence-based medicine, there have been discussions about the epistemic primacy of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) for establishing causality in medicine and public health. A growing movement within philosophy of science calls instead for evidential pluralism: that we need more than one single method to investigate he...
Chapter
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In order to make predictions about potential harms and benefits of treatments for the single patient, pharmacology needs to gain deep causal knowledge. That is, one needs to understand the causal mechanism underlying a certain outcome. Here, we base our argument on a particular philosophical framework, causal dispositionalism, which urges that caus...
Book
Full-text available
This open access book is a unique resource for health professionals who are interested in understanding the philosophical foundations of their daily practice. It provides tools for untangling the motivations and rationality behind the way medicine and healthcare is studied, evaluated and practiced. In particular, it illustrates the impact that thin...
Article
Full-text available
Measurements of environmental toxicity from long-term exposure to oil contamination have delivered inaccurate and contradictory results regarding the potential harms for humans and ecosystems. This has led to a methodological discourse, in which orthodox approaches to risk assessment of oil toxicity are questioned. We argue that methodological stan...
Article
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Scientists seek to eliminate all forms of bias from their research. However, all scientists also make assumptions of a non-empirical nature about topics such as causality, determinism and reductionism when conducting research. Here, we argue that since these 'philosophical biases' cannot be avoided, they need to be debated critically by scientists...
Preprint
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Pre-print of chapter 4 in Anjum and Mumford, What Tends to Be. The Philosophy of Dispositional Modality, Routledge 2018
Article
A question has been raised in recent years as to whether the risk field, including analysis, assessment, and management, ought to be considered a discipline on its own. As suggested by Terje Aven, unification of the risk field would require a common understanding of basic concepts, such as risk and probability; hence, more discussion is needed of w...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Objectives The ‘reproducibility crisis’ revealed the need for a deep reflection on current approaches to evidence evaluation and their reliability (Begley and Ellis,2012; Ioannidis, 2005, Prinz et al(2011). Hidden moderators (Hanin, 2017), publication bias and low power have been identified as possible sources for such results (Etz and Vandekerckho...
Article
This paper is an introduction to the conference, The Guidelines Challenge, held in Oxford in October 2017. My aim is to explain our motivation for organising this conference, as part of the research project Causation, Complexity, and Evidence in Health Sciences (CauseHealth). Depending on the professional starting point, the guidelines challenge ca...
Chapter
Analytic philosophers have in recent decades rediscovered powers as the basis for an all-encompassing metaphysics and philosophy of nature. What recommends the powers view is its explanatory utility, including a putative explanation of potentiality. Powers can be understood as the elements in the world that provide the grounding for potentiality in...
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Evidence-based medicine (EBM) continues to be vigorously debated and person-centered healthcare (PCH) has been proposed as an improvement. But is PCH offered as a supplement to or as a replacement of EBM? Prima facie PCH only concerns the practice of medicine, while the contended features of EBM also include specific methods and the biomedical mode...
Article
Rationale, aims and objectives: Evidence-based medicine has two components. The methodological or ontological component consists of randomized controlled trials and their systematic review. This makes use of a difference-making conception of cause. But there is also a policy component that makes a recommendation for uniform intervention, based on...
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No abstract is available for this article.
Conference Paper
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Article
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Free will is a problem of modality, hampered by a commitment to modal dualism: the view that there is only necessity and pure contingency. If we have necessity, then things couldn't have been otherwise, against the Principle of Alternate Possibilities (AP). If there is complete contingency, then the agent seems to have no control over her actions,...
Article
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The results of sport would not interest us if either they were necessitated or they were a matter of pure chance. And if either case were true, the playing of sport would seem to make no sense either. This poses a dilemma. But there is something between these two options, namely the dispositional modality. Sporting prowess can be understood as a di...
Article
Strand and Parkkinen criticize our dispositional account of causation in evidence-based medicine for failing to provide a proper epistemology of causal knowledge. In particular, they claim that we do not explain how causal inferences should be drawn. In response, we point out that dispositionalism does indeed have an account of the epistemology of...
Article
There are a number of dispositionalist solutions to the free will problem based on freedom consisting in the agent's exercise of a power. But if a subject a is free when they exercise their power P, there is an objection to be overcome from the possibility of power implantation. A brainwasher, rather than directly manipulating a subject's movements...
Article
Miles and Mezzich offer a substantial and focussed account of a “crisis” of knowledge, care, compassion and costs in modern medicine. Their claim is that an over-emphasis on scientific, even scientistic medicine, has resulted in the depersonalisation of care. In response, they propose an emergent model of clinical practice grounded in person-centre...
Article
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If one’s solution to the free will problem is in terms of real causal powers of agents then one ought to be an incompatibilist. Some premises are contentious but the following new argument for incompatibilism is advanced: 1. If causal determinism is true, all events are necessitated 2. If all events are necessitated, then there are no powers 3....
Article
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Medically unexplained symptoms (MUS) remain recalcitrant to the medical profession, proving less suitable for homogenic treatment with respect to their aetiology, taxonomy and diagnosis. While the majority of existing medical research methods are designed for large scale population data and sufficiently homogenous groups, MUS are characterised by t...
Article
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Mumford and Anjum’s Getting Causes from Powers is an ambitious and original contribution to the literature on causation, a welcome departure from Humean approaches which reductively analyze causation in terms of regularities or counterfactual conditionals. The authors develop an account of causation as the exercising of powers, a view they call “ca...
Article
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Mumford and Anjum's Getting Causes from Powers is an ambitious and original contribution to the literature on causation, a welcome departure from Humean approaches which reductively analyze causation in terms of regularities or counterfactual conditionals. The authors develop an account of causation as the exercising of powers, a view they call ''c...
Article
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This paper explores the nature of causation within the framework of evidence-based practice (EBP) for health care. The aims of the paper were first to define and evaluate how causation is presently accounted for in EBP; second, to present an alternative causal account by which health care can develop in both its clinical application and its scienti...
Article
This book develops the theory of causal dispositionalism. Others have already suggested that a theory of causation would follow from an ontology of real dispositions or powers. This book attempts to show how. The book argues that powers come together in complex partnerships producing something together that they could not have produced alone. They...
Article
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Most philosophical theories of causation are informed by theoretical physics. This area is characterised by its extensive use of idealised models and theoretical abstractions. Any causal interaction is typically considered within a clearly defined and closed system. Theoretical physics thus bears little resemblance to the macroscopic world with whi...
Article
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The orthodox view of the fundamentals of causality can be traced back to the empiricist philosophy of David Hume. Hume said that for causality to occur, the cause and effect must be spatially together, the cause must occur before the effect and must always be followed by that type of effect. Hume also thought that our concept of cause included nece...
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Complexity should be at the heart of any viable theory of causation. Without it, we cannot give a sensible account of the importance of context. With many causal factors in play, jointly producing an effect, we come to understand the context-sensitive nature of causation. Cases of hypersensitivity, unintended consequences and antipathetic reactions...
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Omissions are sometimes linked to responsibility. A harm can counterfactually depend on an omission to prevent it. If someone had the ability to prevent a harm but didn’t, this could suffice to ground their responsibility for the harm (Moore 2009: 304). Michael S. Moore’s claim is illustrated by the tragic case of Peter Parker, shortly after he be...
Article
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There has been much discussion of powers or real dispositions in the past decade , but there remains an issue that has been inadequately treated. This concerns the precise modal value that comes with dispositionality. We contend in this paper that dispositionality involves a non-alethic, sui generis, irreducible modality. Dispositions only tend tow...
Article
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Hume thought that if you believed in powers, you believed in necessary connections in nature. He was then able to argue that there were none such because anything could follow anything else. But Hume wrong-footed his opponents. A power does not necessitate its manifestations: rather, it disposes towards them in a way that is less than necessary but...
Article
Does A cause B simply if A prevents what would have prevented B? Such a case is known as double prevention: where we have the pre-vention of a prevention. One theory of causation is that A causes B when B counterfactually depends on A and, as there is such a dependence, proponents of the view must rule that double prevention is causation. However,...

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