The Cybernetic “General Model Theory”: Unifying Science or Epistemic Change?

he Cybernetic “General Model Theory”: Unifying Science or Epistemic Change?

  • February 2018 Perspectives on Science 26(1):76-96

September 2020


With the marginalization of cybernetics, efforts to develop a universal epistemological method ceased as well. But the question remains open as to whether cybernetics contributed to the reconceptualization of the model and the popularity of scientific modeling since the mid-twentieth century. The present study approaches this question using the example of the general model theory of the German cyberneticist Herbert Stachowiak. Although this theory failed to produce a unifying and common model concept, its characteristics point toward a change in epistemological positions that is important for today’s scientific practice and also anticipated recent developments in the philosophy of science.

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