The messages of ontic openness to ecology

A view of our world as possessing an essential property such as being ontically open does carry several important messages to ecologists. The ubiquity of emergent properties or unexpected, rare events should, as such, be no surprise to us any longer. Meanwhile, we should not fall in despair; some predictability is still possible, although we should expect accuracy to be small and uncertainty to be high. Probably, understanding the world as propensities rather than fixed possibilities is the way out of this dilemma. The biological world as we see it around us now, its (bio)diversity consists of the part of the openness that was actually realized. It is, together with its individual components, unique and is "locked-in" from many path-dependent evolutionary events. It will never emerge again and as such it should be appreciated a lot more than seems to be the case at the moment.

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