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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 to define 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.


This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: P. D. Magnus "NK≠HPC" The Philosophical Quarterly (July 2014) 64 (256): 471-477 first published online March 22, 2014 doi:10.1093/pq/pqu010, which has been published in final form at 10.1093/pq/pqu010. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

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