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dc.contributor.authorWilliams, D
dc.date.accessioned2022-06-07T08:12:41Z
dc.date.available2022-06-07T08:12:41Z
dc.date.issued2022
dc.identifier.issn0031-8116
dc.identifier.others11098-021-01722-0
dc.identifier.other1722
dc.identifier.urihttps://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/337780
dc.descriptionFunder: Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge; doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100000591
dc.description.abstract<jats:title>Abstract</jats:title><jats:p>Two striking claims are advanced on behalf of the free energy principle (FEP) in cognitive science and philosophy: (i) that it identifies a condition of the possibility of existence for self-organising systems; and (ii) that it has important implications for our understanding of how the brain works, defining a set of process theories—roughly, theories of the structure and functions of neural mechanisms—consistent with the free energy minimising imperative that it derives as a necessary feature of all self-organising systems. I argue that the conjunction of claims (i) and (ii) rests on a fallacy of equivocation. The FEP can be interpreted in two ways: as a claim about how it is possible to redescribe the existence of self-organising systems (the <jats:italic>Descriptive FEP</jats:italic>), and as a claim about how such systems maintain their existence (the <jats:italic>Explanatory FEP</jats:italic>). Although the Descriptive FEP plausibly does identify a condition of the possibility of existence for self-organising systems, it has no important implications for our understanding of how the brain works. Although the Explanatory FEP would have such implications if it were true, it does not identify a condition of the possibility of existence for self-organising systems. I consider various ways of responding to this conclusion, and I explore its implications for the role and importance of the FEP in cognitive science and philosophy.</jats:p>
dc.languageen
dc.publisherSpringer Science and Business Media LLC
dc.subjectArticle
dc.subjectFree energy principle
dc.subjectPredictive processing
dc.subjectPredictive coding
dc.subjectActive inference
dc.subjectProcess theories
dc.subjectMechanism
dc.titleIs the brain an organ for free energy minimisation?
dc.typeArticle
dc.date.updated2022-06-07T08:12:41Z
prism.endingPage1714
prism.issueIdentifier5
prism.publicationNamePhilosophical Studies
prism.startingPage1693
prism.volume179
dc.identifier.doi10.17863/CAM.85189
dcterms.dateAccepted2021-08-13
rioxxterms.versionofrecord10.1007/s11098-021-01722-0
rioxxterms.versionVoR
rioxxterms.licenseref.urihttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
dc.contributor.orcidWilliams, D [0000-0002-9774-2910]
dc.identifier.eissn1573-0883
cam.issuedOnline2021-09-07


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