New publication of A.C.-Dussault : “Two Notions of Ecological Function”

Antoine C.-Dussault signs a paper entitled : ”Two Notions of Ecological Function” in the journal Philosophy of Science.


This paper discusses Millstein’s (2020) criticism of the consensus view formed against selected-effects ecological functions. I argue that Millstein’s defense of coevolution-based selected-effects ecological functions applies to a notion of function as an activity, whereas proponents of the consensus view are concerned with a notion of ecological function as the contribution of an organism, population, species, or abiotic item to the maintenance of its community and/or the functioning of its ecosystem. Millstein’s arguments hence do not invalidate the consensus view but draw attention to a notion of function that has been neglected in philosophical discussions and that deserves more attention.