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P.D. Magnus


It's wrong to think of Homeostatic Property Clusters as a definition of natural kinds.

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The Homeostatic Property Cluster (HPC) account of natural kinds has become popular since it was proposed by Richard Boyd in the late 1980s. Although it is often taken as a defining natural kinds as such, it is easy enough to see that something's being a natural kind is neither necessary nor sufficient for its being an HPC. This paper argues that it is better not to understand HPCs as defining what it is to be a natural kind but instead as providing the ontological realization of (some) natural kinds.


	AUTHOR = {P.D. Magnus},
	TITLE = {NK$\ne$HPC},
	JOURNAL = {Philosophical Quarterly},
	YEAR = {2014},
	MONTH = jul,
	VOLUME = {64},
	NUMBER = {256},
	PAGES = {471--477},
	DOI = {10.1093/pq/pqu010}

The first on-line draft of this paper was posted 28nov2013.