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What is Metaphysical Equivalence?

Kristie Miller


Theories are metaphysically equivalent just if there is no fact of the matter that could render one theory true and the other false. In this paper I argue that if we are judiciously to resolve disputes about whether theories are equivalent or not, we need to develop testable criteria that will give us epistemic access to the obtaining of the relation of metaphysical equivalence holding between those theories. I develop such ‘diagnostic’ criteria. I argue that correctly inter-translatable theories are metaphysically equivalent, and what we need are ways of determining whether a putative translation is correct or not. To that end I develop a number of tools we can employ to discern whether a translation is a correct one.