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Landes, Jürgen ORCID: 0000-0003-3105-6624 (2020): Variety of evidence and the elimination of hypotheses. In: European Journal for Philosophy of Science, Vol. 10
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Varied evidence for a hypothesis confirms it more strongly than less varied evidence, ceteris paribus. This epistemological Variety of Evidence Thesis enjoys long-standing widespread intuitive support. Recent literature has raised serious doubts that the correlational approach of explicating the thesis can vindicate it. By contrast, the eliminative approach due to Horwich vindicates the Variety of Evidence Thesis but only within a relatively narrow domain. I investigate the prospects of extending the eliminative approach to a larger domain by considering a larger class of sensible explications of evidential variety. For a large subclass class of such explications I show how to construct cases in which the less diverse body of evidence for a hypothesis confirms more strongly. I hence argue that these prospects are dire since the eliminative approach widely fails to vindicate the thesis.