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Reconstructing RealityModels, Mathematics, and Simulations$
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Margaret Morrison

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199380275

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199380275.001.0001

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Legitimating Simulation

Legitimating Simulation

Methodological Issues of Verification and Validation

(p.248) 7 Legitimating Simulation
Reconstructing Reality

Margaret Morrison

Oxford University Press

In order to properly assess the status of simulation knowledge our focus should include the degree of uncertainty inherent in different aspects of the simulation outputs. Related to the question of uncertainty are the methodological issues surrounding verification and validation. While simulation clearly has links to methodological features of both experiment and modelling, it ought not to be assimilated with one or the other, nor should it be considered a hybrid. The methodological structure associated with computer simulation provides us with a type of knowledge that is uniquely generated and raises its own epistemological concerns, concerns that require a careful and subtle approach when assessing epistemic warrant. The focus of this chapter is an investigation of the processes involved in legitimating simulation data, taken in their own right. What distinguishes verification and validation from the sort of hypothesis testing characteristic of experiment is that it introduces new approaches for addressing epistemic questions about the accuracy and reliability of simulation.

Keywords:   error, uncertainty, verification, validation, validation experiments, hypothesis testing

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