Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Organisational closure in biological organisms

Abstract : The central aim of this paper consists in arguing that biological organisms realize a specific kind of causal regime that we call "organisational closure"; i.e., a distinct level of causation, operating in addition to physical laws, generated by the action of material structures acting as constraints. We argue that organisational closure constitutes a fundamental property of biological systems since even its minimal instances are likely to possess at least some of the typical features of biological organisation as exhibited by more complex organisms. Yet, while being a necessary condition for biological organization, organisational closure underdetermines, as such, the whole set of requirements that a system has to satisfy in order to be taken as a paradigmatic example of organism. As we suggest, additional properties, as modular templates and control mechanisms via dynamical decoupling between constraints, are required to get the complexity typical of full-fledged biological organisms.
Complete list of metadatas

Cited literature [46 references]  Display  Hide  Download

https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00792436
Contributor : Matteo Mossio <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 9:36:01 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - 3:53:28 AM

File

Mossio_Moreno_organisms_HPLS_F...
Files produced by the author(s)

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : halshs-00792436, version 1

Citation

Matteo Mossio, Alvaro Moreno. Organisational closure in biological organisms. History and philosophy of Life Sciences, 2010, 32 (2-3), pp.269-288. ⟨halshs-00792436⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

266

Files downloads

113